Methods of Teaching According to “Progressive Education”
Hence all the activities in the classroom are centered towards the individual as an organized personality. The methods of the class-room are socialized and each individual is trained into collective procedures which are considered as the truly democratic method of protecting individual interests. Therefore, conference, consultation, planning, and participation are emphasized as teaching procedures which stimulate maximum learning.
Thus the progressive education follows an experiential and social methodology. The pupils are given various opportunities to experience things, situation of emotional, social, aesthetic and practical nature.
They are encouraged to express themselves in verbal ways. All these experiences should be within their reach. The principle underlying the progressive method is that active participation in various life activities can develop significant integrated personality.
The progressive education regards learning as “one whole experience, a single thing that branches and grows.” Hence the “wholeness of method” is the basis of progressive learning.
The progressive educators accept the principle of motivation and the principle of appreciation but they would like to understand them in their own way. Kilpatrick says, “The presence of interest or purpose constitutes a favorable condition for learning.
Interest and felt purpose mean that the learner faces a situation in which he is concerned. The purpose as aim guides his thought and effort … he gets more wholeheartedly into action.”
Progressivism demands that the teacher must know his pupils fully well in order to guide their self directed learning processes, i.e., he must know the values that the pupils are seeking, he must know the problems that they are confronting and the driving interests that propel them to action at times.
The teacher should try to create situations through which the pupils may learn to gain control of themselves and of the problems that confront them.
The critics of progressive methods of teaching say that the pupils of the progressive classroom lack in discipline. This criticism may be justified in those cases where teachers allow license instead of freedom, and whims and caprices of students are encouraged instead of their positive purposes and interests.
In a school where children are guided to indulge in self-directed cavities and are encouraged to develop into significant integrated personalizes can be nothing but a well- disciplined school. This discipline will be of a positive type, and it will always be beneficial to the pupils in the schools.