Chapter 16 – Brookfield’s Skillful Teacher

Chapter 16 Understanding Students’ Resistance to Learning

I found Chapter 16 to be interesting as Brookfield (2015) tries to assess students’ resistance to learning in the classroom. Brookfield talks about “conversion obsession” as instructors get stuck in trying to convert or change the minds of a small group of students who are resisting to learning in the classroom. The goal is to convert this small group of hostile students into “advocates of learning” (Brookfield, 2015).

I think that teachers want to do well and want to make an impact on students’ lives. When a teacher sees a group of resistant students, the instructor is determined to do their job. I believe that as an instructor, I cannot change every student’s minds. There are always a small group of people who will disagree with me or dislike my ideas. The most important thing to remember as an instructor is that I have to accept that I cannot change everyone’s minds.

Brookfield (2015) discusses possible reasons for students’ resistance. These are the following factors that can contribute to students’ resistance:

–          Poor Self-Image as Learners

–          Fear of the Unknown

–          A Normal Rhythm of Learning

–          A disjunction of Learning and Teaching Styles

–          Apparent Irrelevance of the Learning Activity

–          Level of Required Learning is Inappropriate

–          Fear of Looking foolish in Public

–          Cultural Suicide

–          Lack of Clarity in Teachers’ Instructions

–          Students’ Dislike of Teachers

–          Going too Far, Too Fast

By looking at Brookfield’s list, I can see that many factors can assist in creating students’ resistance in the classroom. By acknowledging these possible resistant factors, I can do my best in teaching in the classroom.


Brookfield, S. D. (2015). The Skillful Teacher: On Technique, Trust, and Responsiveness in The Classroom. John Wiley & Sons. P15-26.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s