I have read the article ‘What does student centered learning really mean? and found it interesting. As an instructor in related trades welding, I was trying to comprehend what this meant for me and my students. I realized through the composition that the author has flipped the words in their definitive state to mean that the students are not the center of the learning process per say but instead this concept requires a passionate, talented and motivated teacher to be at the center.
This for a time left me with a feeling of confusion. I thought as teachers we were to let our students run the show (student centered)? I do feel that there can be more flexibility in methods of information delivery and subsequent learning. The question to me is, how can I give students the tools they will need to find solutions to problems they may encounter in their professions?
The answer, according to the author of this article, came towards the end. The key ingredient in his opinion was to put the talent, innovation and passion at the front of the class and let the students grow themselves. Well, I feel fortunate with this hypothesis as I happen to teach a subject matter that is very interesting to me. I also feel that the learning of the students I am teaching is the most important outcome for them as well as myself. I will leave the talent component evaluation to the eye of the beholder.
As a related trades instructor, we do not have the time to develop a level of proficiency with processes the students are using but my goal is to give them the tools that they can use anytime in their careers. I am always trying new things to help students learn comprehend and retain information.
As the saying goes, ‘buy a person dinner and you have fed them for a day, but teach someone how to hunt and you have fed them for a lifetime’.