Teaching from Within

Program 2 • 29 mins


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Teaching from Within

Nel Noddings

Our teaching systems wrestle with problems of violence in schools and teacher burnout. How can we overcome the growing sense that what people learn in school doesn’t prepare them for real life? How can we overcome the problems we face, and create better schools, that both nurture and teach our youth?

In this half-hour of Humankind, we’ll hear from two committed educators: Parker Palmer in Madison, Wisconsin and Nel Noddings in New York City. They discuss what they believe is at the heart of teaching. These dedicated teachers provide their vision of an enlightened school system.


  • What is at the heart of teaching?
  • How can we encourage students to be reflective and learn about themselves while they are in school?
  • Are students more engaged when they learn in the classroom or do they get something deeper when they learn by doing, such as performing service in their communities?
  • How can we help to educate the whole child?
  • Why do schools focus on test scores rather than on what children truly learn?

Parker PalmerWe need the little child to walk up and down the halls of our schools and say, ‘The emperor has no clothes.’ This isn’t —this may look like education, we may have conned ourselves into thinking this is education—but it isn’t and at some level we all know it.”

Parker Palmer, Author of The Courage to Teach


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