This is my last post on the book What is Education? for my blog for school. Thanks for bearing through my contemplative mish mash over the past few weeks. If you didn’t notice, my posts seemed to get shorter and shorter as we went through the book. I think I started to have less and less to say. Or maybe I just didn’t know what to say. This post is not a post on a chapter of the book, but my end of term definition of education (ETDE). It’s what I came up with after finishing this course, and what I think the essence of education for me is. Note that this is my definition. It doesn’t have to be yours.
This is my final ETDE: Education is providing a cultivating and nourishing environment for students to learn, a preparation for students to perform well for their living, and an instillation of a desire for betterment of the self and of the world around them.
My RIDE was: Education is bringing students to the point that they are able to think critically about the world in which they live. It is preparing them to be and desire to be the best that they can be within their community.
I think that my definition of education has definitely grown and developed. Education is not just critical thinking. In the Noddings text we saw how critical thinking in and of itself can fall short, especially when it comes to the moral aspect of why we are engaging in this enterprise called education. Some things of consideration were: what is the realm in which education can flourish? What is the purpose of education? How do we pursue it outside of the classroom? My final ETDE is still short in many ways, but for now I am satisfied with it. I hope to keep improving and working on it for the rest of my career as a teacher, and for the rest of my life.
As I shared in class, I hope that we will never, never stop growing. And it reminds me of a Christian hymn, a line which says, “Let me then be always growing, / Never, never standing still.” The line refers to the growth of our spiritual life, but I think it can be applied to our pursuit of the truth of education as well. May we always be growing.