The real subjects in Catholic education are the learners in the sense that wisdom requires that the learners be the primary agents of their own learning. Learners are invited to see for themselves: to be active agents of their learning rather than passive recipients of knowledge.
Learners are encouraged to use their whole minds in the pursuit of learning – their reason, memory, and imagination. And because learning proceeds from what is known to the unknown, learner’s own lefe experiences become the building blocks to new learning. An attitude of openess to the truth requires that practices of exclusion – such as racism and sexism – be absent from the learning environment. Wisdom is the antithesis of injustice. Such openness also welcomes everyone into the learning process. Everyone’s voice can be heard in the learning environment just as everyone has the opportunity to learn.
Strategies to engage Reason and Rationality in Catholic Schools:
- Encourage social analysis: the context of learnings gives meaning to the content; cultural contexts and worldviews are open to question; other perspectives can be viewed
- Promote responsibility and commitment: take learners beyond their own knowledge; discover how knowledge can be life-giving
- Sensitize learning: investigate whose interests are served by what we learn; relate learning to the Reign of God
- Encourage relational learning: allow for different styles of learning; collaborative; cooperative learning
- Foster the professional development of teachers in the study of theology and religious education
- Assess student learning in the religious dimension based on the cognitive understanding of faith integration into all subject areas
- Celebrate academic achievement
How can Catholic educators educate for wisdom?