John M. Crawford, F.S.C.
Lasallian pedagogy is grounded in the insight that the person of the teacher is the significant element in effective education. Using the insights of Gadamer, Ricouer, and Tracy, the historical Lasallian texts upon which this pedagogy rests speak beyond their origins. True to its Christian roots, Lasallian education is a pedagogy of kenosis, reflecting contemporary philosopher Emmanuel Levinas’ insight about the human obligation to meet the compelling needs of the Other. As La Salle saw it, the teaching endeavor needs the support of community, and reflects the modern insight of educator Parker Palmer that a circle of trust wherein relationship and dialogue are possible is the means to bring about transformation. The paper draws heavily on the work of Brazilian educator Paulo Freire to suggest that humanization is the shared vocation of all persons, and that educators, particularly those in the Lasallian world, are engaged in the conscientiousization that comes from seeing with the eyes of faith and exercising zeal on behalf of the young as elder siblings to them. This pedagogy brings both challenges and opportunities for educators, particularly in higher education, to remain true to the Lasallian charism of faith, care, and zeal for the brothers and sisters entrusted to the teachers’ charge.
de La Salle; Lasallian pedagogy; Scholarship of teaching and learning
About the Author
John M. Crawford, FSC, Ph.D.
Brother John M. Crawford, FSC, is an Associate Professor of Religion at La Salle University in Philadelphia, PA. The dissertation for his PhD in Religion and Education at Boston College is entitled “Extending Lasallian Charism: Its Texts and Lived Contexts for the Spirituality of Teachers.”