Common Sense

I don’t know about anyone else, but I was overwhelmed with thoughts after reading just the introduction of Kumashiro’s book Against Common Sense.

He defines common sense as a way that our society views teaching and learning, though those views may be oppressive in nature. However, he also states that “common sense does not tell us that this is what schools could be doing; it tells us that this and only this is what schools should be doing.” (Kumarshiro, 2009, xxxiv). When I read this I feel as though we can accomplish nothing. It’s common sense to run your own classroom the way all the other teachers do, making sure the students are taught what they need to be taught.

It’s so important to pay attention to common sense because that is the norm. That is what our society and education system bases their foundation on. The “insistence that we “use our common sense” is really an insistence that we view things as some in our society have traditionally viewed things and want to continue viewing things.” (Kumashiro, 2009, xxxvi). If this is common sense, how does one change it?

Kumashiro, K. K. (2009). Against Common Sense: Teaching and Learning Toward Social Justice. New York, NY: Routledge


3 thoughts on “Common Sense

  1. Very honest reaction to your introduction to Kumashiro’s writings. It is unsettling to think that what WE have come to think of as ‘common sense’ is only common to ourselves. It’s unsettling to think that school may not be what we think it to be. I remember the first time I read his work and I felt confused and frustrated that he instilled so many questions rather than giving the right answers. Trust me, this is a book that you may resist and squirm while reading but you’ll learn so much. It’s also a book that you’ll revisit many times throughout your education program and hopefully, your career.

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