A True Manifestation of gMp: Dogs in Elementary School Learning

A True Manifestation of gMp: Dogs in Elementary School Learning

Konstantinos C. Koutsopoulos (National Technical University Athens, Greece), Stefanos P. Gialamas (American Community Schools (ACS) Athens, Greece) and Theo C. Koutsopoulos (American Community Schools (ACS) Athens, Greece)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0267-8.ch011
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Abstract

This chapter presents the basic concept and the components of the Dogs in Learning (DiL) program, as a true reflection of the gMp. The implementation of the program at ACS Athens has shown that curriculum subjects can be taught more effectively and in a playful and enjoyable manner when the learner is fully engaged with the help of dogs in the learning process. By following a Spiral Curriculum using instructional dogs, several basic issues related to human behavior are internalized by the students. In addition, the DiL program can successfully address the bullying phenomenon of our society; and, finally, the DiL program can inspire students to develop the wisdom to transform their educational experience.
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Manifesting The Global Morfosis Paradigm: Dogs In Learning (Dil)

As it was mentioned earlier the Global Morfosis Paradigm is a dynamic pedagogical approach consisting of three inseparable, interconnected, and interrelated components: the Morfosis Educational Philosophy, from the Greek word Μόρφωση (ethical, intellectual and social shaping of the human character); the i2 Flex (isquareFlex), a non-traditional learning methodology; and the Aristeia, from the Greek word Αριστεία (pursuing excellence under the guidance of ethos). Therefore, any educational program within this framework, such as the Dogs in Learning, have to clearly manifest as well as fulfill the goals and objectives of these components.

The Morfosis Educational Philosophy in DiL

In general, the Morfosis Educational Philosophy is a Holistic approach focusing on successfully combining academic, emotional, physical, intellectual and ethical components of education in order to ensure a healthy and balanced individual. That is, students address all questions in a holistic approach not only intellectually but also emotionally. Whether it is in mathematics, social studies, or a reading question they are immersed in the learning process using all of their senses at the same time that their intellectual ability is challenged.

Based on this philosophy, in the Dogs in Learning program, students in answering a meaningful question related to amount of food a specific dog needs to survive or how much it will cost to keep a dog healthy, basically eliminate the usual questions asked by them such as “why it is important to learn a specific concept?” or “where I am going to use this mathematical concept”? At the same time, principles and values such as: is it ok to abuse a dog? What is our responsibility to helpless animals as ethical citizens students are tested, answered and reinforced.

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