Philosophies of education

Last week, someone asked me to explain my philosophy of education. So here it is:

I don't have one.

I have dozens. And some of them conflict with each other.

I believe in open-ended learning, and I believe that most students benefit from clearly defined objectives. I believe in whole language, and I believe in teaching standard register and usage. I believe in collaboration through technology, and I believe in the power of listening to one's own voice. And on it goes.

Basically, I am committed to learning, especially (but not limited to) learning about language and its use. The details are 'the hobgoblins of little minds.'

Too often, educators take a position about learning that becomes axiomatic. We have good intentions, but we end up in camps, solidified with jargon and the unifying power of a commonly held idea defined by an opposing idea.

Dogmatism -- even when advancing positions I basically believe in -- is an enemy to education.

And I suppose that is my philosophy of education.

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