There are no translations available.
‘Education is not
John Dewey, pedagogue.
Education is much about how we relate to our mind individually and collectively. One factor contributing to the complexity of the debate on education comes from the multiplicity of stakeholders:
The Center for Mindfulness has launched a special program for teachers, visit their webpage.
Understanding the brain/mind functioning is decisive to develop a sustainable education system
Bauer states synthetically that schools are about brain, minds, creativity, motivation and cooperation. All these elements are dynamic phenomena which all have a neurobiological foundation. We understand his intention as aiming to demonstrate that schools should be lively and human greenhouses.
Without understanding the way the brain works, emotions generated and handled, trust built and human cooperation fostered, it is a very uncertain endeavor to influence how schools should work. Motivation, cooperation and relations find their origin in the brain structure and functioning.
Role models and mirror effect as learning principles
In the way parents and teachers behave can children not only recognize who they are but also who they could be in terms of potential and development possibilities. Children live in the corridors of thoughts held by their educators. Through the relations we have with children and teenagers, we shape in a decisive way what they will become. This should not be a reason to strive for perfection as teacher or parent but build on this process to activate motivation and enthusiasm in the mind of the children and teenagers they are responsible for. This can be called the ‘resonance’ phenomena.
Pedagogical principles: imposing, shaping and resonating. An evolutionary process.
Shaping as an educational principle or as Bauer calls it ‘the plastic principle’, aim at training people through repeated practice. In the brain, this provokes the liberation of the hormone responsible for happiness if and when a feeling of having reached a certain level of mastery has been reached. The problem is that being courageous enough to repeat as many times as need to form proper neuronal connections in the brain to be performing a task properly is not that easy and one does not always feel like it.
Resonating is the educational principle that Bauer promotes in his book and to which we strongly relate ourselves personally. The first component is that children and teenagers learn through their relationships to adults. The second component is that that children and teenagers feel the motivation their educators have for a topic or domain. When both components are coming into play, healthy relationships and motivated educators, there is the unique chance that kids resonate with this state and make major learning experience through a deeply felt motivation to learn. As parents, we can give the example of the same kid taught the same topic by two different teachers and being one year motivated and the next not while intellectually still liking the topic. The level of felt enthusiasm in the classroom impacts directly if the kids will be themselves motivated or not.
In this context, teachers can use terms such as:
Teacher are encouraged to promote conditional uncertainty.
The profession of teacher
This is made easier to teachers if they themselves have access to their strengths and weaknesses, feel confident and are mindful of their own needs. This helps them to be authentic and spontaneous and be role models inspiring young people in their holistic development.
In operational terms, a decisive moment is the first few minutes at the start of the class, when teachers and pupils/students come together. If the teacher is in touch with him or herself, can be spontaneous and take the thread of the discussion with grace, the chances that the class will run OK. If the start is about missing children, missing papers or homework, there are less chances that the attention will be positively established in the social unit of the classroom.
The role of parent
Parents have a key role to play to support the school and teachers community. Schools are one of the spaces that children/young people are part of as homes, sport places, streets, friends’ houses, shops and so on are. In each of these social spaces there are rules meant to help the functioning of the group that occupies it. Parents cannot expect to delegate solely to the teacher the upbringing of their kids in terms of social behaviors. They are the relay to the world outside schools. Without their sustained efforts outside schools, it is unfair to expect from the teachers to establish successful social environment, filled with respect and peace.
Children see the world through the eyes of their parents. If the parents do not respect authentically the teachers, their kids will also not be able to respect the teacher, at least in the early ages. If we consider that learning is conditioned primarily by the quality of the human relations, the above becomes a major source of problem for the learning process.