The ten fundamentals challenge: is your middle ground, my middle ground?

Ten fundamentals of progressive education. How many do you agree with

Ten Fundamentals

1) Progressive education is in the domain of the social sciences and is not an art or natural science

2) Progressive views should be embedded in praxis based upon a philosophical and theoretical educational tradition.

3) The purpose of progressive education can be viewed pragmatically as a critical pedagogy for a democratic Society in a dialectical conversation with the knowledge of the past and a progressive vision of the future

4) Progressive education gives primacy to independent thinking based on knowledge and not knowledge itself

5) Progressive practitioners are collaborative and outward looking

6) Progressive education is evidence informed (not evidence based) based upon practice informed research using qualitative and quantitative research methods.

7) Cognition is not based upon memory it’s holistic; social and emotional

8) Progressives see knowledge from a fallibilist perspective; constructed but not transmitted

9) Pedagogical approaches are used dependent upon context not on dogmatic assumptions. Pedagogical approaches include; teacher talk, inquiry / discovery based learning and assessment but are structured within a framework of communication, instruction and supportive feedback (see the dynamic model of educational effectiveness (Creemers & Kyriakides, 2006)

10) Progressive education views knowledge of the world as mediated, separate to the way the world is and socially real


3 thoughts on “The ten fundamentals challenge: is your middle ground, my middle ground?

  1. I found this series of posts to be interesting and illuminating.

    I answered agree to every question although sometimes I wished I could have added a rider to my answer.

    For Instance….

    3 I would not suggest that I also think that trads or neo-trads are inward looking and not co-operative.

    6 I think knowledge is often transmitted and combined with real world perceptions to be used for construction. You transmit your knowledge to me and I use it to construct my own.

    The following are for me profound foundations for teaching and learning…

    1, 2, 4, 5, 6,7, 8 and 9

    The most important for me are….

    5 and 8 with a dash of 6.

    I have to be honest and say that 10 I didn’t really get to grips with.

    To sum the whole thing up for me, learning is about people which I believe takes us back to number 1.

    If the knowledge, tradition and homeostasis are more important than the people then I think all is lost.

    Great series of posts

    thank you

  2. Thanks appreciate you comments. I’ll come back with a longer answer to your post shortly.

    The last one is really a clumsy enunciation of a critical realist position as opposed to a constructivist one. If that means anything. It does crop up in twitter debate

  3. OK here are some more views. Point 3. Take your point but does an assertion that one approach has an attribute means that another does not? Possibly. it does I’ll have to think about that a bit further.

    On point 6 I’m not sure you can transmit to me because that would pre-suppose that I have the knowledge to understand what you understand and often that is not the case.

    I do not think we construct from a perfect understanding of what is told to us but from the perspective of our personal histories. Therefore it seems to me not possible to transmit. Albeit I get what you are saying.

    Number 10 is really about argument of what is “real” and what is not. Post modernists tend to suggest that everything is constructed and that we cannot really know the real world, as it is.

    Realists tend to say that we are working to understand a world that is essentially external to what we know but we can know it.

    Point 10 is a bit of a middle ground that in fact both perspectives have an element of truth. The real world is both constructed and has a natural self, Whilst we can come to know the external world better it may also be the case that we cannot know it fully.

    I agree totally 5 and 8 are absolute fundamentals but 1 is also key.in my view to creating a profession that begins to understand itself better..

    Once again thanks for your comments.

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