What is Critical Pedagogy definition/concept

Pedagogy is the discipline that studies education in general. In this sense, the pedagogue is a specialist in the school world, in the study methodology, in training projects, in school guidance, teacher training, among other functions. One of the currents of this general discipline is critical pedagogy.

For critical pedagogy students must reach a critical awareness in their educational phase. In this way, students must acquire theoretical knowledge and pass certain exams, but actually what they need is to promote their formation as an individual aware of the reality surrounding them.

Main characteristics and fundamental aspects

  • – The formation of the student’s self-awareness is necessary;
  • – The purpose of the learning process is to transform social reality;
  • – The educational system must address existing social differences and adopt a posture committed to the values ​​of justice and equity. Critical pedagogy theorists, especially writer Paulo Freire, understand that education is an instrument to change the world;
  • – The teaching process should focus on the student’s self-improvement in their social and cultural context;
  • – The fundamental aspects of critical pedagogy should be based on student participation , on their humanistic training, on the transformation of society and on the contextualization of teaching-learning;
  • – The conventional education system promotes a culture of oppression and competitiveness and is linked to an alienated culture. Critical pedagogy seeks to combat the political, cultural and economic aspects that degrade the educational system;
  • – Critical pedagogy must be understood beyond a strictly educational movement, as it emerged in the  20th century with the objective of fighting neoliberalism, imperialism and religious foundations;
  • – The school model is aimed at a combative cultural action that questions the culture of dominance. Critical Pedagogy

Other alternative teaching currents

There are other currents and pedagogical approaches that also contribute to an emancipatory vision of the human being. Libertarian pedagogy is inspired by anarchist ideology and seeks to transform society as a whole. Escola Nova is a model that questions the validity of the traditional school . The Montessori method promotes student autonomy. In the same way as in critical pedagogy, other currents bet on education as a transforming instrument of social reality.

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