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Small Classes : Privilege

Cece Lee's picture

One of the lines in the readings in 'A Pedagogy for Liberation' that stuck to me was "the right to have a small discussion begins as a class privilege". It took me back to high school where all of my friends were scrambling to get into a large universities and I was the only one who was applying to small liberal arts colleges. My peers and the school administration did not understand why I wanted to go to a small liberal arts college and have undermined my decision to attend Bryn Mawr College. However, when I shared my classroom experiences to my friends over facebook, they expressed a hint of jealousy because they never had an opportunity in class to speak up or have a dialogue with the professor. Their voices would get lost in the crowd and they never had an opportunity to build a relationship with the professor whereas at Bryn Mawr, I could engage with professors easily inside and outside of the classroom. Though my peers were at big name colleges and were lauded for their decisions, I now understand that I am privileged to have the opportunity to engage with my professors. Friere stresses that education is not simply the relaying of information from the teacher to a student, it is the level exchange between the teacher and the student that makes education an art form and a learning opportunity for both parties.