Teaching Tip Tuesday: The Inevitability of Learning

submitted by maherk@augsburg.edu

In 1933, a speech given by John Dewey at Teachers College, Columbia University was published by the New York Times. In it, he describes what a utopian vision for education might be. He opens, “the most utopian thing about Utopia is that there are no schools at all.” Recognizing the limits of the institution of schooling, Dewey argued for learning by association, experiences together, much like apprenticeships, driving the collective education for the Utopians. Key to Dewey’s idea was what he called “the inevitability of learning” and that the utopians became utopian only when they had moved away from an acquisitive society (where they sought to acquire knowledge in order to acquire things) to an inquisitive society.

This month’s EDTalks will focus on the experiences had by our students. On April 14, Jason Lukasik will speak to the curricular theories and history that underpin experiential learning. On April 28, Joe Underhill will reflect on the evolving nature of the River Semester, and how he continually engages students in teaching “by doing and by example.” As Augsburg is committed to creating meaningful experiences with our students, these talks, and Dewey’s piece, help us to focus on the necessary move from “acquisitive” to “inquisitive.”

The speech can be found here: http://www.yorku.ca/rsheese2/3410/utopia.htm

Teaching Tips are posted on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of every month.

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