Download Conversation #17
A conversation with Daniel Barbezat of Amherst College, on teaching, learning and contemplative pedagogy.
People ask, “What does a liberal arts college do? What does a good education do? It teaches people how to think.” It’s kind of a ridiculous claim in a way, because people know how to think. But we’re giving them tools to think more deeply, clarifying what they’re thinking about. That process can be deepened and expanded by a reflective process: not only of an abstract reflection, but a reflection on the inner life of the student… This inner life is being directly nurtured and sustained in an inquiry of the material that’s being learned. The students now see how their inner life connects to what they’re learning, and… that deepens both their curiosity and interest and their understanding of the material.
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