Monday, October 25, 2010

Unasked Anwers, Unanswered Questions

"Unser Kopf ist ein Kübel. Er hat Löcher, und bei den Löchern fließt die Information von der Welt hinein. Das ist auch die Grundtheorie der Pädagogik. Die Trichtertheorie ist dann die Theorie des Lehrprozesses. Der Kübel bekommt noch extra einen Trichter aufgesetzt, und dort gießt man dann das Wissen hinein. Das ist die übliche Theorie. Tatsache ist, daß unsere Pädagogik darin besteht, daß man die Kinder mit Antworten überhäuft, ohne daß sie Fragen gestellt haben, und auf die Fragen, die sie stellen, hört man nicht. [...] Das ist die gewöhnliche Pädagogik: Ungefragte Antworten und unbeantwortete Fragen. (Zustimmung im Auditorium.) Darin besteht im wesentlichen unsere Pädagogik. Es ist aber so, daß alle Organismen, nicht nur der Mensch, sondern alle Organismen, dauernd an die Welt Fragen stellen und dauernd Probleme zu lösen versuchen."

Karl Popper, Vienna, May 1983 (cf. Popper/Lorenz [1985], p. 52f)

Unasked Anwers, Unanswered Questions

Our head is a bucket. It has holes and through the holes information from the world flows into it. That is the basic theory of education. Accordingly, the cone theory is the theory of the learning process. In addition, the bucket gets a cone put on top and then knowledge is poured into it. That's the usual theory. It's a fact that our education consists in bombarding children with answers without them having asked questions, but not in listening to their questions. [...] That's ordinary education: unasked answers and unanswered questions. (Affirmation in the audience.) That's what our education essentially consists of. Nevertheless, all organisms, not humans only, but all organisms pose questions to the world all the time and all the time they try to solve problems. (tranlation by base2014)


Anonymous said...

True - that's our education system. But how to improve it? You cannot have teachers ready to answer every question arising in the head of a child, can you???

Anonymous said...

Interesting thought. Nassim Taleb is actually talking about the same problem in his "The Black Swan" book.

base2014 said...

How to improve education? 1) Try to listen to students questions and try to give answers and don't be shy to admit that you don't know; try to help students finding answers independently; make lists of questions typical for a form or age of students and try to be prepared to answer; try to exploit children's own natural "drive" to investigate nature! 2) No teacher should be allowed only stay his whole life in the habitat of school and university only! Every teacher should have at least, say 5, years of school-free experiences! 3) Try to communicate the beauty of mathematics! 4) Cut boring details of calculus or of all the biographical trash of kings and queens and battles; instead, include the following subjects into the curriculum: Basic Theory and Facts of National and International Law; Basic Knowledge in Medicine; Knowledge in National and International Politics; Theories of Economy; ... and last but not least: Intellectual Self-Defense!

Post a Comment