Members: Laura McGroary
This discussion was about are feelings on the class, what we learned overall, and if we think what we learned will help us in future classes. I said that I felt as if I progressed as the class went on. On the first project, I really struggled with what I was supposed to right about and was a little confused, but then, with all the feedback, I had a better idea of what I was doing for the second one. I do think this class will help me with future classes. This was my first college writing class and it gave me an idea of what my future professors will be expecting from me and how I will need to write to succeed in my future classes. Overall, I felt that this was a good class for helping me understand what college writing is like and I think a lot of my classmates would agree.
Topic: We will discuss what we learned in this class. How we felt about each project and if we feel prepared for writing classes we will take in the future.
Date and Time: Friday 12/6 3 pm
Location: Sykes, Second floor, Center for student involvement
Positive: I really like these ideas and I think they support your topic really well.
Constructive: I think this is a good thesis, maybe by adding a quote from Percy, it could make it even stronger.
Percy: I really like the quotes you chose and I think they support your ideas really well.
Positive: I think these are really like these ideas you chose and I think they work well in your essay.
Constructive: Maybe just clean up your thesis a little bit and make it flow better.
Percy: Adding a quote from Percy for you first topic and third topic might help prove your points.
Positive: I think you have really good ideas and I think they work really well in your essay.
Constructive: I think you thesis maybe too wordy and readers may have a hard time following.
Percy: I like the quotes you chose from Percy and I think they explain your ideas really well.
Positive: I really like your ideas and overall I think they are good ways to teach without actually teaching.
Constructive: Maybe start your paragraph where you are explaining your subpoints, with exactly what you subpoints is, so readers don’t have to search for what each paragraph is about.
Percy: I liked the quotes you chose from Percy and they helped prove your ideas. I also like the quotes you chose from Freire too.
In this discussion group we will be talking about the similarities and difference between Percy and Freire. We will discuss both of their views on the education system.
Where: Eco Grounds (First floor of Sykes)
When: Friday at 2pm
In this discussion group, we started with the idea of how social media impacts people’s lives. We all immediately agreed that social media negatively affects people. People only post things online that they believe other people will like or that will make them seem cool. For example, when people are at parties they are always posting videos that look like they are having fun, but sometimes that person might not even be a party person, but they just want to seem cool to their peers. One member of the discussion said, “social media distorts reality.” Which we all could agree with. You never see someone’s true self by looking at their social media page. We also discussed how all the fun and excitement of a new experience is taken away because all people can think about is taking pictures or what their friends and followers are gonna think on social media. This related to Percy’s ideas in “The Loss of the Creature.” People no longer even realize that when they see something amazing, they immediately are reaching for their phone.
Throughout the world, the education system faces a contradiction between the student-teacher relationship. In “The ‘Banking’ Concept of Education”, Freire discusses his view on this relationship saying, “the teacher knows everything and the students know nothing” and “the teacher chooses and enforces his choice; and the students comply”. At West Chester University, we face some of the problems that Friere mentions and the only way to fix the problem is to start making changes.
In order to bridge the gap that separates students and teachers West chester University needs to start taking steps in order to better their education system. First year students at West Chester are required to take First Year Experience, where they learn about college and what they will need to succeed. Each week the class meets as a big group and then on Fridays we meet in smaller groups called breakout sessions. I found that this one of the few benefits that this class has. These breakout sessions are helpful in getting to know your professor on a closer level rather than just listening to them talk to a class of 150 students. This could be beneficial for each class students take. Once a week students could have breakout classes with their professor and 5-6 other students. By doing this, students would be able to get to know their teacher on a closer level. Also, students that are more introverted would be able to ask their questions in a smaller environment without feeling the judgement and stares of a whole class. Through these small group classes students and teachers will get to know each other on a more personal level.
Another step that can be taken to resolve the gap between teachers and their students is the general education courses. Friere says, “the teacher chooses the program content, and the students (who were not considered) adapt to it.” This quote relates to general education classes because students aren’t allowed to decide. They just have to take these courses even if they don’t apply to their major. This could really hinder the students success in that class because they might not be interested in a class they are being forced to take. Overall, that same mindset could affect the students relationship with their professor. If a student doesn’t want to be in a certain class or is not interested in the subject of the class, how are they going to be able to form a relationship with that teacher. In order to avoid this teacher-student contradiction, I think the requirements of general education classes should be removed or at least lessened. This will help solve the problem because students will be able to take more classes that they actually have an interest in; and thus might be more willing to form a relationship with their professor.
By taking these small steps, it could lead to a bigger change and knock down the barrier between students and teachers. Then they would be able to see each other as equals rather than their boss just talking at them.
Topic Selection: topic #3
Topic Proposal: I want to focus on the two different types of learning discussed in Freire’s essay, The Banking concept and Problem-posing education. I want to focus on how each is used at West Chester University and how each impact the relationships between students and professors.
Team Selection: by myself
Working thesis: In Freire’s essay, he defines “The Banking Concept of Education”, but also “Problem-posing Education”. These styles of teaching can be seen on the West Chester University campus, but how does each one impact the teacher-student relationship?
“Problem-posing education does not and cannot serve the interests of the oppressor… In the revolutionary process, the leaders cannot utilize the banking method as an interim measure, justified on grounds of expediency with the intention of later behaving in a genuinely revolutionary fashion.” (page 6)
“Banking education (for obvious reasons) attempts, by mythicizing reality, to conceal certain facts which explain the way human beings exist in the world; problem-posing education sets itself the task of demythologizing.” (page 5)
Our discussion group started with the question, “Is in-class learning or hands on experience more beneficial to students?” We could all agree that hands-on, real life experience is more beneficial. For example, in a science class you can talk about formulas all you want, but you might not actually understand what you are learning until you perform an experiment. We also said that, in real life experiences, you will mess up and be able to learn from your mistakes, but if you mess up on a test you won’t get a second chance. We also all agreed that we are visual learners, so that hands-on learning works best for us. But, we did consider that some students might not enjoy this type of learning if the are more reserved and don’t really like to participate. The down side of that though, is that some students could just be trying to get an A and aren’t actually retaining the information they are given. Then they face the problem of memorizing, but not actually learning.
Our discussion group referred to the third prompt for our first writing project. We started with the questions, “How does a student befriend a professor?” and “Is it relatively easy or hard to establish a relationship with them?” We all agreed that it really depends on the students’ personality. If a student is very shy or introverted it would probably be harder for them to form a relationship with their professors. But, we also talked about how there is a gap between the student and the professor. The professor is the boss and it might be difficult for some students to look past that and see them as more of a friend that is trying to help them. The prompt provides a quote from Freire, that states, “Education must begin with the solution of the teacher-student contradiction.” We all agreed with that statement and listed many different examples of how a student could overcome that barrier with their professor. Students can make small changes, such as sitting in the front of the class, making eye contact, and asking questions. The professors also help break that barrier by providing their students with office hours, where they them can ask questions one-on-one. Overall, there are many ways in befriending a professor and overcoming the “teacher-student contradiction”.
Our discussion started with the statement, “teachers know everything and students know nothing.” I would consider this a common belief in the world today. We all agreed that teachers should make sure that their students are understanding the information and that they aren’t just talking at them. One member of the discussion said, “The whole thing made me think of a suppressed society” where students are being forced to learn by how the teacher is teaching and not in a way that is actually beneficial to the student. We also said, sometimes, teachers might not care if the students are actually retaining the information, and they could just talk at them to get all the information out. I think that this idea “that teachers know everything and students know nothing” has become such a common thought, because you are paying so much money for an education and that must mean that you are learning everything you need to. But, I also believe that everybody learns in different ways and that there can not just be one standard way of teaching.