There are many opinions about the purpose of education in our country. It can be hard for teachers to figure out their role until they decide what education means to them.
Determining the purpose of education can be difficult for teachers, especially when administrators and legislators implement rubrics and standards that seem to disrupt rather than improve the system. By adhering to a few key principles, teachers can more easily identify their role in the classroom and help create successful students.
Cultivate Critical Thinking
Children who study hard might be able to repeat information in class or recall facts to answer correctly on exams, but this doesn’t help cultivate the ability to think critically about issues. Teachers can’t assign lessons that require children to memorize information and expect them to succeed. It isn’t enough for students to simply know facts on the road toward academic and career success. By showing students how to reason, analyze, understand, and reflect upon the processes through which they use and apply information, teachers can administer lessons while cultivating crucial developmental skills.
Pinpointing Student Passions
With each student, teachers notice different priorities, interests, and passions. Whether a student enjoys promoting environmental responsibility, debugging software, or cultivating artistic talent, teachers should examine the topics that excite their pupils and incorporate these interests into lessons. Not only will students become more engaged when they can see themselves in and relate to lessons, teachers will find greater purpose of education when they are able establish deeper connections with children.
Providing Students with a Purpose
For many students, school seems to be the traditional course through which they must travel to reach adulthood. Children might not realize that their school experiences, interactions, and behaviors all contribute to the person they will become. Relay to students that the purpose of education is not only academic, but also promotes their growth as a contributing member of society. Teachers should recognize opportunities to instill valuable lessons regarding empathy for others, working through problems, collaborating on projects as a team, and debating issues through reason without igniting conflict. These lessons will ensure students are prepared for life after they leave the classroom.
Though these are only a few of the ways through which educators can find and promote a comprehensive purpose of education, there exist key components to providing a complete school experience that benefits the whole child. When educators focus on shaping student minds through focusing on the ways in which children think and approach problems, they will see progress regarding lesson engagement and test performance. While the purpose of education includes equipping students with information, it is most important to show children how to use their minds by applying material learned in class when faced with situations in the real world.
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