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U. Turgut1, R. Salar1, A. Aksakalli2

1Ataturk University (TURKEY)
2Ministry of National Education (TURKEY)
According to Freire and Shor, an educator who defends critical pedagogy is a libertarian educator. In both traditional and libertarian pedagogy, the fundamental goal is to provide individuals with skills and qualities. However, while the traditionalist education system does this based on its conservations, the libertarian educator tries to do this by considering student expectations. The libertarian educator is focused more on concepts of autonomy of the individual, self-realization, self-management and control, knowing oneself, self-esteem and multidimensional development of personality. In addition to the work of education as an economic issue, the educator pays more importance to its social, cultural and educational characteristics. Additionally, the critical educator achieves development of an individual in a way that will ensure their multidimensional and autonomous improvement, and provide qualities of being able to determine their future.

The concept of classroom climate is a complex concept that may be used interchangeably with others such as learning environment, classroom environment, and classroom atmosphere. While the classroom climate may help students learn on a higher level, it may also act as a barrier that obstructs their learning process. There is no study has been found in the literature about the effects of science teaching provided based on critical pedagogy principles on the classroom climate. The purpose of this study is investigating the effects of science teaching based on critical pedagogy principles on the classroom climate. For this purpose, case study methodology which is one of the qualitative approach was used. The samples of the study consisted of 20 eighth-grade (14 years) students. The science and technology course was provided to the students in the sample during the year (32 weeks) based on critical pedagogy principles. In the study, observations was used to collect data. As a result, it was found that science education based on critical pedagogy principles affected the classroom climate positively.

Our study presented a necessity towards questioning the curriculum in the current education system. Therefore, teachers should be willing to use and improve critical language both inside and outside the school. According to Giroux, critical language not only increases teachers’ capacity, but it also associates their profession with pedagogic information such as critical learning and social empowerment.

There is a need for development of a new critical discourse for the educators, in order to push education into more radical dimensions and liberate it in general. Such a discourse has critical significance for educational scientists and others in terms of our school gaining a new identity. Considering the status quo we are in right now, we are aware of how many risks these discourses carry. However, in order to improve education and liberate it, we think these risks are worth taking.