Pedagogy: The Science Of Teaching
Word Origin--Greek: Paidagogas
In Ancient Greece a paidagogos was a trusted slave who accompanied a child to his classes, ensured his good behavior in public, cared for his needs and tutored him with his homework.
Webster’s Dictionary defines pedagogy as “the science of teaching”. Given the complexities of the task, it could be argued that when done well by a skilled teacher it is as much an art form as a science. The application of standards, the implementation of assessment and evaluation, and the choice of curriculum is certainly on the science side of that equation. What the teacher does with that information, how she relates to the students, her ability to engage their imagination and ultimately to touch their souls in pursuit of the joint dream of quality education is in the province of art.
The Importance Of Pedagogy
The critical role of the teacher engaged in the active process of teaching in the classroom may be undervalued in the overall discussion of standards. David Souza made this point in his book, How The Brain Learns.
“As we examine the clues that this [brain] research is yielding about learning, we recognize its importance to the teaching profession. Every day teachers enter their classrooms with lesson plans, experience, and the hope that what they are about to present will be understood, remembered, and useful to their students. The extent that this hope is realized depends largely on the knowledge base that these teachers use in designing those plans and, perhaps more important, on the instructional techniques they select during the lessons. Teachers try to change the human brain every day.” (Souza, 2001, 3).
The teacher must have not only a mastery of the content and curriculum, an appreciation of the various forms of standards, an awareness of assessment, and the ability to organize the lessons, but also be able to engage students--...