Contemporary education is very much different from the traditional education. Paul Freire’s perspective is one of the most interesting, contemporary, philosophical thoughts. He propagates a pedagogical approach which revolves around students’ dialog. Engaging students in a co-operative dialog process helps to develop a variety of skills in students. It contributes to the academic and social development of students as well. Dialog process is important for enhancing community and building social capital. Students learn to socialize better because of this approach.
Dialog process is supported by cooperation and collaborative learning strategies. Stephan Yelon says those strategies promote three key elements of student learning. They are reflection, support system and preparation for life. Students should learn to work in teams. Teachers should engage students in dialog process by which they learn to be a part of a discussion. They also come to know how to construct knowledge in a manner that is meaningful to them.
Every teacher develops his or her way of teaching and he or she uses a personal pedagogy. In other words, this is defined as the way teachers teach their students. There are different kinds of pedagogies. Some interesting kinds are:
These pedagogical constructs are used differently for different levels of education by different pedagogues.
Learning by listening: This approach is also called “learning by being told” model. This is a very traditional method which holds lectures very important. This mode of teaching becomes successful only when the instruction is very dynamic. Otherwise this mode of teaching-learning activity turns out to be very dull. This method can be modified and implemented in the contemporary education scenario. The lectures can be recorded and can be put on a digital environment. Students can hear it whenever they want.
Discovery learning: In this mode students go to the library, search literature and learn by discovering information. Nowadays with the internet searching information has become easy and it does not require much time. This is a highly constructive way of learning which is best suited for self-motivated students and also for higher levels of education.
Learning by doing: This is a practical form of learning which gives students “hands-on experience” in what they do. This method is prevalent in science classes since the experiments need to be done in order to learn things.
Learning through discussion and debate: Learning becomes most effective when it happens in a small group. A small class with an effective instructor does great things in the world. Discussions and debates are very popular modes of learning both in the traditional and contemporary education.
Blended learning: This mode of education makes use of factors like body language, greeting, socializing, face-to-face contact etc. This kind of learning is a new development which can be used in technology-supported learning too.
There are a lot of pedagogical methods in vogue. The teaching methods need to be designed and molded by respective teachers to suit their students. For effective learning to happen different contexts need to use different teaching methods.
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