A few blogs ago I referred to Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. I invoke that model again. Operationally, individuals or groups do not move upward through levels before each lower level is substantially and continuously satisfied. When a lower level is not being substantially satisfied, individuals and groups will regress to efforts to regain satisfaction at the lower level. Arguably this concept applies as well to my model above, with exception. I can see where the actions required at more than one lower level might be ongoing during the same time frame without deterring progress. For example, installation of computers and word processing software would probably be necessary, to some degree, before word processing training should begin. Yet installation of computers and word processing software can readily be installed while constructivist pedagogy orientations and instruction occur. As noted in the “The Results Are In” blog below, Maslow’s hierarchy can apply to education as well as to the work place. A great interpretation of his thoughts on education can be found here are are quoted in part below:
Maslow believes that the only reason that people would not move well in direction of self-actualization is because of hindrances placed in their way by society. He states that education is one of these hindrances. He recommends ways education can switch from its usual person-stunting tactics to person-growing approaches. Maslow states that educators should respond to the potential an individual has for growing into a self-actualizing person of his/her own kind. Ten points that educators should address are listed:
1. We should teach people to be authentic, to be aware of their inner selves and to hear their inner-feeling voices.
2. We should teach people to transcend their cultural conditioning and become world citizens.
3. We should help people discover their vocation in life, their calling, fate or destiny. This is especially focused on finding the right career and the right mate.
4. We should teach people that life is precious, that there is joy to be experienced in life, and if people are open to seeing the good and joyous in all kinds of situations, it makes life worth living.
5. We must accept the person as he or she is and help the person learn their inner nature. From real knowledge of aptitudes and limitations we can know what to build upon, what potentials are really there.
6. We must see that the person’s basic needs are satisfied. This includes safety, belongingness, and esteem needs.
7. We should refreshen consciousness, teaching the person to appreciate beauty and the other good things in nature and in living.
8. We should teach people that controls are good, and complete abandon is bad. It takes control to improve the quality of life in all areas.
9. We should teach people to transcend the trifling problems and grapple with the serious problems in life. These include the problems of injustice, of pain, suffering, and death.
10. We must teach people to be good choosers. They must be given practice in making good choices.