This idea of “spoon-feeding; students gets kicked around a lot these days. But what really is meant by this phrase? Is it a bad thing and should we stop it? If so, how can we?
In an interview on The Learning Capacity Podcast, learning specialist Richard Andrew described spoon-feeding as:
“Any process which robs students of the opportunity to take responsibility for their own learning.”
According to Richard there are two types of spoon-feeding – explicit and implicit.
Explicit includes behaviour such as providing notes to students so they can “pass” an exam (here Richard really emphasises the idea of merely passing).
Implicit spoon-feeding includes the teacher-centered learning approach that many schools have in place. Through this, teachers teach to or ‘at’ students – “do what I do and know what I know” as Richard puts it.