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When you carefully understand the relationship between teachers and students at any
level, inside or outside the school, you can see that at its core, its like a narrative
where one person tells a story. This relationship involves a narrating Subject (the
teacher) and patient listening objects (the students). Education is suffering from
narration sickness.
The teacher talks about reality as if it didnt move, was in a neat little box, and is
predictable. Or else he goes on about a topic completely unrelated to the experience of
the students. His job is to "fill" the students with what makes up his story things that
are not connected to reality, and from the things that can give them importance.
Words are emptied of their realness and become empty words that dont connect us to
one another.
The main characteristic of this narrative education, then, is the sound of words, not
their power to change the world. "Four times four is sixteen; the capital of France is
Paris." The student records, memorizes, and repeats these phrases without
understanding what four times four really means, or realizing the true meaning of
"capital" in the sentence "the capital of France is Paris," and what Paris means for
France and what France means for Europe.
Narration (with the teacher as narrator) leads the students to memorize the story like a
machine. Worse yet, it turns them into "containers," into "receptacles" to be "filled"
by the teachers. The more completely she fills the receptacles, the better teacher she
is. The more tamed and calm the receptacles are, the better students they are.

Question: What quality do all receptacles have in common? How does Friere
think students are viewed?

Education thus becomes an act of depositing, in which the students are the
depositories and the teacher is the depositor. Instead of communicating, the teacher
gives information to the students, they patiently take it in, memorize it, and repeat.
This is the "banking' concept of education, in which the students are only allowed to
take in and keep the deposits that the teacher gave them. They do have the opportunity
to become collectors of the things they are asked to store. But in the end, it is the
people themselves who are stored away through the lack of creativity, uniqueness, and
knowledge, in this messed up system. Because if people cant ask questions and find
the answers, or apply ideas, they cant truly be human. One only gets knowledge
through inventing and reinventing, through the unending questions that people try to
answer in the world, with the world, and with each other.

In the banking concept of education, knowledge is a gift given by those who consider
themselves knowledgeable upon those whom they consider to know nothing.
Automatically assuming that others are completely ignorant is something thats found
in oppression. This goes against education and learning through asking and solving
questions. The teacher presents himself to his students as their opposite; by thinking
of them as completely ignorant gives him the title of being the one to educate them.
The students like slaves, accept their ignorance to prove the teachers position as the
teacher -- but unlike the slave, they never discover that they educate the teacher.
Question: In what ways do you all as students educate or could possibly educate

Education must begin with the solution of the teacher-student problem by fixing them
both so that both are teachers and students at the same time.
This solution is not (nor can it be) found in the banking concept. On the contrary,
banking education keeps this problem going through the following attitudes and
practices, which shows how oppressive society can be as a whole:
a. the teacher teaches and the students are taught
b. the teacher knows everything and the students know nothing
c. the teacher thinks and the students are thought about
d. the teacher talks and the students listen without questioning back
e. the teacher disciplines and the students are disciplined
f. the teacher chooses and enforces his choice, and the students go along with it
g. the teacher acts and the students have the illusion of acting through the action
of the teacher
h. the teacher chooses the class material, and the students (who were not spoken
to about it) get used to it
i. the teacher confuses the ability to have knowledge with his or her own
professional power, which goes against the freedom of the students
j. the teacher is the subject (person) of the learning process, while the students are
objects (things).
Question: Do you agree with the claims that P.F. has about the relationship between
teachers and students in the education system? Why or why not? Can you back it up
with evidence (that you have read or personal)?