Banking vs. Problem-Posing: a Need for Synthesis

Topics: Education, Truth, Thought Pages: 3 (1176 words) Published: March 6, 2007
Banking vs. Problem-Posing: A Need for Synthesis

Education has long been a concern among society. Studies show that different minds grasp knowledge differently; thus new techniques are always invented, while old ones are modified. In Pablo Freire's essay, "The ‘Banking' Concept of Education," Freire simply attacks the traditional teaching style, claiming "it turns them [students] into ‘containers,' into ‘receptacles' to be ‘filled' by the teacher" (Freire 213) and thus should not be used. He goes on to pose his own solution, a concept called problem-posing method. Yet it seems that these two styles must be synthesized if the learning experience is to be successful. A student cannot be expected to learn anything without the foundation gained by traditional learning, which Freire calls banking. So banking cannot be eliminated from the educational system, but should be used alongside the problem-posing method. Freire begins his essay with the argument that banking does not promote knowledge. Instead the students merely memorize what they are told, but according to Freire they do not learn why two plus two equals four or the importance behind knowing all fifty states and their capitals. Students under the banking method just sit in the classroom and absorb what is told to them to be true. This is the meaning of Freire's quote earlier about students being "‘receptacles' to be ‘filled' by the teacher" (Freire 213), the students are just a storage place for facts and truths, but lack the knowledge to apply that information to other concepts. Then the reason for Freire's argument against the banking method is he views knowledge as something that "emerges only through invention and reinvention, through the restless, impatient, continuing, hopeful inquiry men pursue in the world, with the world, and with each other" (Freire 213). Yet this would not exist under the banking method; there is no inquiry, which is the main problem Freire has with the banking method. Freire...
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