“The “Banking” Concept of Education” and the Modern Workplace
In “The “Banking” Concept of Education” by Paulo Freire, he widely expresses that the “oppressors” (teachers) just throw information at the students and they have no choice but to accept it. There is no real learning between the teacher and the student. The students are basically forced to memorize the information they’re being “taught”. His theory about the most crucial skills that a teacher should possess is accurate in so many different ways; not only should an instructor help a student know material but also build the confidence that they learned all the material. This is what a lot of instructors lack in this day and age. This lack of concern and effort from some of teachers make students feel that they are just there for a paycheck. Instead of taking the time to observe if students are learning or not, many teachers would just talk and flip through a powerpoint that contained the notes. Paulo Freire listed a number of ways that students are being taught in the classroom and considers our society to be oppressive; I’ll list a few I believe are important.
One of the most important quality that Paulo Freire listed was “the teacher knows everything and the student knows nothing”. The teachers do not care about the students’ education. The teachers are “force-feeding” students. The students do not know anything that they are supposed to know because the teachers frankly don’t care. The only thing that they care about is getting their paycheck every two weeks. The teacher has very little to do with the teaching and learning process; it is not really a process considering that the students aren’t technically learning. The students have learned how to memorize the work they’re supposed know. They know if the work is not memorized that’ll result in them getting a bad grade on the assignments that the teacher will give them.
Again, the “force-feeding” process begins again when Paulo Freire states “the teacher chooses the program content, and the students (who are not consulted) adapt to it”. Ultimately the teachers teach the standard for the state. Most times the teacher has no control of what is supposed to be taught, but the way it can be taught is a different story. In the beginning of the year/semester the teacher could take a survey on the way different students learn. Then the teacher could…..
The last important thought that Paulo Freire expresses is that “the teacher confuses the authority of knowledge with his or her own professional authority, which she and he sets in opposition to the freedom to the students”. In many classrooms the statement just listed is ironically true. Many teachers confuse their actual command of their subject with the power given them over the students' command of the subject without the work submitted by the students, there wouldn’t even have been a class. Nothing the professor ever said could have been generated without first reading the work of the students. The students, should always be the subjects of the class, and the professor's opinion, secondary to ours, should be the object. Then students and teachers could work together to ultimately better themselves in the teaching situation. The “banking” system creates a minimum wage worker. Most Americans are settling for minimum wage. They think that is okay to make minimum wage is good, because they are at least putting money in their pockets and able to feed their families. It is not okay, we need the generations behind us to make more money than we did. The “banking concept of education”, is not the education we would like our kids to have. We need good hearted teachers and administrators to give our kids the education they deserve.