Dewey’s Education through Occupations as Being-Doing-Knowing: An Introduction to Teacher Planning with Creative Learning Units
This first journal article identifying CLUes speaks to the importance of teacher awareness of being-a-student, and that teachers are always working with ways of being.
Quay, J., Miller, L., Browning, D., & Brodie-McKenzie, A. (2022). Dewey’s Education through Occupations as Being-Doing-Knowing: An Introduction to Teacher Planning with Creative Learning Units. Journal of Curriculum Studies, 54(5), 632-646. https://doi.org/10.1080/00220272.2022.2070716
Teachers are concerned with both student engagement and achievement of learning outcomes. Both are necessary, yet often considered in disconnected ways. We argue that such disconnection is a consequence of competing educational purposes, combined with an organizational framework for schooling that attempts to paste over the differences by identifying young people generically as students. In seeking a way forward, Dewey understood the importance of getting beneath the competing views and exposing the compromises and confusions. Hence, he identified the need for a new order of conceptions leading to new modes of practice. Central to meeting this need was his pronouncement on the significance of education through occupations. We follow Dewey’s lead by highlighting the importance of being, as a verb, to education. We wish to increase teachers’ attentiveness to how being a student characterizes and constrains education, and the way teachers work. We draw on philosophical investigation to highlight that being is one with doing and knowing, offering a different way to consider encounters between young people and knowledge that teachers plan for as learning. In bringing this theory to life as practice, we introduce a new unit design framework: creative learning units.