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Teaching as a form of love

03 Oct

The third principle Andrew Metcalfe and Ann Game derive from their corpus of interviews is Teaching as a form of love.

Teachers can see potential only when the teaching relationship is characterised by love and respect. Whereas desire is partial, because it is self-centred, pedagogic love keeps teachers and students open-minded, patient and respectful of differences. There is no conflict between the teacher’s duty of care and their duty to teach because care is at the heart of the teaching relation. Teachers can teach a love of learning, a love of a discipline, a love of life, only if they love teaching.

I will not even presume to get autobiographical about this one. Instead let me commend a vlog item (March 2007) by Clarissa Kelly, an American/British woman living in England.

It is interesting, I feel, that a UTS/Department of Education study that I participated in from 2001 to 2003 found in the context of the much more mundane concept of scaffolding learning that:

The common distinction between teacher-centred and learner-centred is unhelpful; what in fact happens is a constant interplay between the two. Classes where students are seen as worthy conversational partners do tend to be marked by successful scaffolding, however, as in such classes teachers are more attuned to the degree to which students are taking on new knowledge.

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