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Community Comment

A Word A Day — pedagogical

January 07, 2013

Word of the Day

  • pedagogical
  • audio pronunciation
  • \ped-uh-GAH-jih-kul\


: of, relating to, or befitting a teacher or education

New teachers will be evaluated on pedagogical skills such as lesson planning and classroom management.

"The report suggests that the exam be multidimensional and include subject knowledge as well as pedagogical knowledge. In other words, in addition to having to know the subject they teach, teachers would have to demonstrate that they had the qualities to be 'caring, competent and confident.'" — From an article by Donna Krache at CNN's Schools of Thought blog, December 4, 2012


"Pedagogical," which has the somewhat less common spelling variant "pedagogic," was coined in the early 17th century from a Greek adjective of the same meaning. That adjective, "paidagōgikos," in turn derives from the noun "paidagōgos," meaning "teacher." The English word "pedagogue" (which can simply mean "teacher" but usually suggests one who is particularly dull) derives from the same root. Though the words "educational" and "teacher" make the grade in most contexts, "pedagogical" and "pedagogue" are useful additions to the class.


Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.