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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Student-Centered Learning

What is this thing called Student Centered Learning?
What's the fuss about Student Centered Learning?
Why do we as teachers and educators need to use Student Centered Learning in our teaching?
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These are some of the questions commonly asked by teachers and educators alike. It seemed that being a teacher these days are much more challenging than in the days of our forefathers. During those days, the teacher is the epitome of knowledge, the know-all, the wise one. Teachers are still the epitome of knowledge even to this very day, but the focus has shifted from the teacher to the students. In those days, the teacher stood in front of the class, telling students what they need to know. This is the traditional way of teaching. The teacher will normally ask if the students understand the day's lesson and most of the time, out of boredom, the students nodded their heads.
In this era of technology, teachers have been asked to reasses their teaching. The students are now the main focus during a class or lesson and what goes on in their minds i.e. learning is the main concern of the teacher. There are several reasons why the shift from teacher-centered to student-centered. One would be that when the teacher teaches, the teacher is actually telling the students what they understand. The students being viewed as an empty vessel or vase or jug, only accepts what the teacher tells them without understanding a single thing. They only look back at what they copied in class after the lesson is over and regurgitate what they were told during the exam. They scored an A in that subject not because they understand what goes on but merely because they have superb memory to memorise facts. But all these will be soon forgotten as time goes by as none have made a mark in their brain cells to be remembered. Some students on the other hand, just couldn't grasp what was going on in class and began hating the subject will eventually lead to failing miserably in that subject. Hence, the change to student-centered is done to ensure some form of learning takes place in the minds of the students.
To further understand what student-centered is, watch the video on Student-Centered Learning.

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