Under the current neoliberal paradigm, the discussion of “good teachers” often centers on a very limited aspect of “best practices” used to effectively transmit pre-packaged knowledge to students. Soka, or value-creating education as expounded by Japanese educators Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, Josei Toda, and Daisaku Ikeda, is an Eastern philosophy that inherently challenges the neoliberal conception of the role of a teacher and the nature of teacher-student relationships. It not only re-conceptualizes “good teaching” as guiding students to apply learned knowledge to create meaning, or valuable outcomes, but also identifies a key characteristic of “good teachers” as the attitude of mutual growth between teachers and students. In this commentary, drawing on both the theoretical and empirical literature, I explicate how the Soka framework conceptualizes the teacher-student relationship: both the doing, the methods of teaching, and the being, the attitude of a teacher. This focus provides educators with a new framework to reflect on in order to re-think the teacher’s role in relation to students.
"Re-Thinking the Teacher-Student Relationship from a Soka Perspective,"
Mid-Western Educational Researcher: Vol. 30:
4, Article 7.
Available at: https://scholarworks.bgsu.edu/mwer/vol30/iss4/7