Banking Concept Essay, Research Paper
?The ?Banking? Concept of Education?
In the essay ?The ?Banking? Concept of Education?, by Paulo Freire, he writes of education today and how it oppresses creativity in students. This oppression is a sum of his concept of banking in which the students become the ?depositories and the teacher the depositor.? Freire claims something can be done to stop this Banking process and it starts with student recognition that they need to act. When the students decide to act, the ?problem posing method? comes into play and the students may become individuals. I see each and every day these methods used in my own school life, as I sit through my dictatorial lectures or contra verse one on one with my professors.
In reference to my dictatorial lectures, my ?banking experience? is a close description to that of Freires, when he writes, ?This is the Banking concept of education, in which the scope of action allowed to the students extends only as far as receiving, filing, and storing the deposits?. Page 349 In my similar classroom, students sit down and listen to the teacher in order to gain information that will help them succeed later in life. Every day they pay attention to a professor speak his or her knowledge of the subject even if it makes no sense. Taking notes and filling there minds with this information that can almost be useless to them.
This useless information, in which we as students are suppose to keep until a given test date, and then as ordered regurgitate. Freire hates this whole idea, of the lack of the individual in the classroom. Freire expresses this as he writes,” but in the last analysis it is the people themselves who are filed away through the lack of creativity, transformation and knowledge in this (at best) misguided system?. Page 349 I can relate to this quote in my own class, where at least 120 people in a stadium like room, are lead by our professor that has to use a microphone in order for everyone to hear her. We have no creative outlet with our teacher in fact for the most part the few that do raise their hand are missed as our teacher looks at her sea of slaves. We are nobody, as we hurry to write our notes of her overhead before she jumps to the next.
A depository does not fully understand what is taught. In a rare case where the professor does ask the students a question, a woman once raised her hand giving the wrong answer. At this point I have to ask myself if it is even worth raising my own hand, and it is obvious that the rest of the auditorium feels the same way as a silence comes over the room. The teacher answers her own question and continues on about the slide, failing to associate her question with the lecture. Forcing us to continue to write further notes, the urge for more explanation is forgotten. There is no creativity in this class, no teacher-student interaction, there is just receiving, memorizing, and repeating.
One must now ask themselves why there is not a solution for this dilemma. Freire believes there is a solution, and he refers to it as the ?Problem-posing? method for education. This is where the teacher and student interact with each other in order to learn. ?The teacher is no longer merely the-one-who-teaches, but one who is himself taught in dialogue with the students, who in turn while being taught also teach.? Page 354. As the professor and student interact with one another, the more questions are answered which are understood clearly. By using this ?Problem Posing Method? there is a connection that goes far beyond teaching, it is one which questions are being raised, teachers are thinking of answers that relate not only from text but also from thought and experience. This concept works the other way also, in that the student also has to interact, think, and thus understand.
I am not only exposed to the downside of education in my current experience; I am also seeing the Problem Posing method used. In this class, I participate on ?discussion? in which the students are encouraged to ask questions and in some even assigned as homework to type two three subject matters in which they are having trouble with. The teacher answers these questions in the class. Freire explains this experience, ?The students-no longer docile listeners-are now critical co-investigators in dialogue with the teacher?. Page 355 I certainly can relate to this quote, as where in lecture I am nobody, and in discussion I can be an individual and raise questions that have more meaning then any designated overhead.
I have walked through my first semester at UMASS, wondering why we have lectures and even find myself questioning if it is for just selfish reasons for the multitude of students wishing to take the class. Through Paulo Freire?s essay, I am able to see that it is not just me who thinks that being a depository does not do anything for students. I can now recognize the strength of my discussion class and perhaps take better advantage of its learning experience. The Problem Posing Method is the way to go and I will look for those classes based on this type of teaching for next semester. I will be a individual, and will not be oppressed by my depositors.