“Imposing an alleged uniform general method upon everybody breeds mediocrity” – Dewey. In the above quote, John Dewey, like others such as his contemporary A.N. Whitehead, worries about imposing a uniform general method––much akin to what educators do in “methods courses.” Whitehead worried about this universalization of practical habits so much that he even railed against “good teaching”; for such teaching, carrying with it the concept that “this and this are the right things to know,” rigidifies learning and creates “thought [that] is dead”. Building upon the quote already given, Dewey states that “to suppose that students … can be supplied with models of method to be followed … is to fall into a self-deception that has lamentable consequences”. And these consequences are those of “imposing intellectual blinders upon pupils––restricting their vision to the one path the teacher’s mind happens to approve”.
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