A young teacher was told that, as teachers, we shouldn’t care, we should teach. Pedagogy is said to be more important that relationships.
They made contact with me, wondering what my thoughts would be ..
I replied as follows-
They have got it wrong. Utter b-s!! They are leaving out such a basic understanding.
Pedagogy is the art and science of teaching and learning – we DO pedagogy.
And we do pedagogy IN a relational context.
We don’t DO relationships, they are already IN, and underpin everything we do as individuals AND as a school.
We don’t add relationships to our pedagogical practices, cos relationships are already present. Relationships make up and constitute the organisational culture that we teach within.
Just as in life, There is no moment when relationships are not ‘ in’ our schooling, and where relationships don’t matter.
Think of a teacher as a goldfish in a bowl. This fish can make all sorts of decisions, even pedagogical ones. But the fish will always be IN the water, that is, in relationship with the water. (It is not good for the fish’s health if it tries to get out of the relational context with the water)
Relationships are where it all starts and finishes. It’s not firstly about the DOING of pedagogy, rather it starts with we, as teachers are BEING IN relationships.
Get ready for more on this in my book, which is in print’ entitled ‘Relational Leadership in Education’ (more details nearer the time when released in August)!
Prof David Giles