In Michael Austin’s “ Reading the World”, Paulo Freire explains his concept of “Banking Education” as education becoming “lifeless and petrified”. Freire explains how this society is becoming like a bank, where knowledge is deposited into the minds of the students, which are empty until the deposits are made. In the Banking Concept, memorization is the principle of “narration sickness” as Freire described. My junior year Calculus class is an example of “Banking Education”, and it failed because the environment gave the students a sense of memorization, gave unimportant concepts that did not provide us with the information we needed to pass exams, and the relationship between teacher and students lacked structure.
My calculus class was all about memorization at times. It was necessary to memorize the concepts lined out in the textbooks, or the words written on the board- for those were the answers to every test, every semester including the final. We memorized the words written, the formulas given and the graphics displayed, for we knew that we would see that again in the same exact format. We could not apply the same formulas or even know what formula to use if the names and numbers in the word problems were switched out. Memorization was without a doubt an easy way to pass, but not to learn.
Repetition also played a key role in the classroom setting. It became the “same routine- different day” type of environment. Although the lecture material was different, the way the class developed was exactly the same everyday. We were set on a routine that consisted walking in and leaving the classroom with the same level of understanding. Not having had learned a single thing, and knowing that the same thing would be repeated over and over again every day was not only irritating but also discouraging. There was a repetition of lack of teaching, repetition that led to failure.
Besides repetition of routine, the class also tended to give...