Journey of a Teacher

How I View Education?

Posted on - 9th June, 2021 Posted by - Yallaschools


How I View Education?

How I View Education? – Dr. Morteza Honari (PhD Human Ecology)

Even kings need learnings, Learning is a need for both young & old. (Persian Proverb)

Holistic Approach - My approach to education is a holistic approach. A holistic approach has become the requirement of our time as it enables us to uncover the roots and dimensions of complex systems such as education, health, culture and environment. A holistic approach opens the way to better understand such complex systems.

In a holistic approach we examine the inter-relationship of something with everything else.

There is a growing understanding and acceptance at a personal and at. intellectual levels that everything is linked to everything else. It has become increasingly clear that traditional studies do not carry within themselves adequate paradigms for an understanding of such complex phenomena.

It is my intention to apply the holistic approach of human ecology to education.  Therefore, instead of providing a definition of education, in this paper I will attempt to identify dimensions of education.

Principles of Human Ecology As soon as we mention ecology we have to acknowledge three issues. These three principles form the principles of ecology:

  1. Environment is the core theme of human ecology. Environment is a cultural space in which everything inter-acts with everything else. Environment is acknowledgement of the fact that everything has a surrounding, that life depends on. A tree, a goat, a family they all live in an environment. This environment is surrounded by another environment. One needs recognition of this simple fact that there is an environment, and the environment is not somewhere out there, it is with us, it starts from our skin: the environment of any living things starts from its skin. You are a part of my environment, as much as I am a part of your environment. 
  2. Relationship implies there is something continuously happening. The one thing that permanently happens is change. Ecology seeks to see how everything is in interaction with everything else. Therefore, nothing is alone, suspended, and useless in the whole universe. There is, therefore, an emphasis upon the concept of dynamism. Dynamism views process, action, inter-relation, inter-dependency, inter-play and linkage. Everything depending on everything else. Every organism, every tree, every bird, and every human being interplays with others, has impact on others; impacts by human beings and on human beings are permanent.
  3. Holistic approach brings about a framework for thinking holistically. Holistic vision suggests that there is something beyond a specific plant, animal, matter or individual. Based on this we must be prepared to develop and sustain a vision of totalities.

It is based on this fact that it is not possible to take a narrow reductionist approach to study multi-dimensional issues. In this approach we can study all inter-plays between all elements and factors.

Human ecology provides a framework for studying interactions within environments, holistically.

Human ecology in essence is study of human ecosystems.

Ecosystem An ecosystem is a geographical area in which all elements of life interact; all elements of life including the biological, natural, human, none-biological, cultural and human-made. In other words, ecosystems are a community of living organisms and none-living elements interacting as a system.

Human Ecosystem An ecosystem is a geographical area in which all elements of human life interact. All elements of human life include: the physical, social, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual elements of human life.

Human needs include food, clothing, shelter, safety, security, friendship and affection, the need for respect and esteem, the aesthetic and self-actualization.

Human ecosystems can be seen at the following levels -

  • micro-ecosystems: family, home and communication with others; and
  • macro-ecosystems: neighborhood, community, culture, educational system and economic system.

In another words, the human ecosystem is a system where communities of human beings and none-living elements interact.

Because of the multi-dimensional nature of education, the geographical space where it can be studied should be termed an Educational Ecosystem.

Homes as Educational Ecosystems

Homes are the most significant examples of human ecosystems. Homes have physical features such as floors, walls, ceilings, and also the artistic aspects of these features. Houses, not homes, are shelters to protect from natural and other risks. Homes on the other hand are the geographical space that individuals grow and develop further. Individual children learn in homes how to behave, eat, and get ready for entry into society. Homes: It is in addition to meeting all human needs. Education starts from homes.

Schools as Educational Ecosystems

Schools are ecosystems in which formal education is delivered. Formal education is the scientific, organized and methodological systems which been developed, delivered and accepted worldwide, with general common principles while considering certain differences.

School ecosystems include the spatial, physical, geographical, structural, architectural, social, economic, political, cultural, religious and artistic.

Within schools, various groups of people are in interactional communications including: students, teachers, administrators, managers, professional and service staff.

Sharing experience

I would like to ask people who are involved directly or indirectly in educational ecosystems to share their experience with others by answering the following questions. I will share them with others in my writings, either anonymously or by name -

  • What is the expectation from education?
  • What is the expectation from the educator?
  • What is the expectation from students?
  • What is the expectation from schools?
  • What is the expectation from the education system?

Please write to

References regarding human ecology and human ecosystems can be found in:

Honari, M., and Boleyn, T., (ed.) 1999, Health Ecology: health, culture and human- environment interaction, Routledge, London and New York

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