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Wild pedagogies and wilding pedagogies: teacher-student-nature centredness and the challenges for teaching

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The notion of wild pedagogies entreats teachers to act – to wild pedagogies – by acknowledging that more than a singular will characterizes pedagogical situations. Wilding pedagogies requires going beyond ideas of teacher-centred and student-centred pedagogies to encompass nature-centred pedagogies: recognizing the self-will of wider nature. In attempting this wilding, we suggest teachers can learn from the the previous movement from teacher-centred pedagogy to what Larry Cuban describes as teacher-centred progressivism; a hybrid pedagogy that emerged as a result of compromises between teacher-centred and student-centred pedagogies. Attempting to incorporate nature-centred pedagogies presents difficulties and opportunities for educational responses and we highlight a way forward that might be achievable via Dewey’s notion of education through occupations. Occupations are important to Dewey’s theory of experience, drawing together purpose and meaning into occupational wholes. This, we argue, presents challenges for teaching.

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  1. For further philosophical explanation of occupations as being-doing-knowing, see Quay (2013, 2015).

  2. For further analysis of Dewey’s coherent philosophy of experience, see Quay (2013, 2015).


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Correspondence to John Quay.

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Quay, J., Jensen, A. Wild pedagogies and wilding pedagogies: teacher-student-nature centredness and the challenges for teaching. Journal of Outdoor and Environmental Education 21, 293–305 (2018).

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