Ira Shor, the author of this article, basically lays out the guidelines to an ideal teaching environment, in which the teacher and the students coexist as one force that depend on each other to successfully flow. Shor explains that the role of a teacher is to be democratic in the sense that her or she runs the classroom, as well as directs the curriculum. The author also notes that it is key to create an atmosphere within the classroom that is open and successfully promotes class involvement. If a student feels comfortable walking into a classroom, that student is more likely to be involved and interested in the lessons within that classroom. This comfort ability is key to a successful and well functioning class. A prime example of this is obviously FNED. I know this is true for the majority of you as well, but I personally am always really comfortable stepping into class and knowing that I will be able to have my say, and then people will in turn respond creating good conversation and debates. Open debates such as these have always been something I thrive on, and I enjoy standing up, even if it's against others, and being allowed to put my two cents in. Everyone in this class is respectful of one and other and allows each student to have their say, paying full attention when it is their turn to speak. So far at RIC, I have never been lucky enough to be in such an involved class as this. If more classes could be like this (especially within the high school level), I feel there would be alot more students who would become more interested and comfortable with the certain curriculums. I hope to one day run a classroom half as good as the way in which our FNED class is run, because I want students to become involved and feel the comfort ability that it key to great success.
scene from my favorite movie, plus i was the only classroom example I could think of