I'm looking for words like to polish, to shape, to mould, to forge, to chisel etc that could also be used in the context of pedagogy. Thanks.

closed as not constructive by MetaEd, Marthaª, Brian Hooper, kiamlaluno, choster Jun 8 '13 at 14:02

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  • What is wrong with "shape" and "mould"? It is quite common for people to speak of "moulding" young minds through the educational process. Likewise, young minds can be shaped pedagogically through means that are legitimate or illegitimate (such as "brainwashing" techniques). "Chisel" is a little harder to use, but is still possible. Diamonds-in-the-rough require chiseling; so, too, do some students, in order to smooth the "rough" edges in their thinking. As to how these things are accomplished, well, that's another question altogether. – rhetorician Jun 7 '13 at 13:09
  • @shanba_kay As it is, this is really open ended. Can you narrow this down a bit, maybe by giving some context or examples that more specifically address the points you are most curious about? – JustinC Jun 7 '13 at 13:28
  • You appear to be asking for a portion of an ontology, like this one. – John Lawler Jun 7 '13 at 14:19

As John Lawler comments, an ontology (or several parts of one) would be needed to answer your question. This answer is not such, merely a sampling of the many verbs related to polish “that could also be used in the context of pedagogy”.
brush up, “To review; to improve an existing but rusty or under-developed skill”
burnish, “To make smooth or shiny by rubbing; to polish; to shine”
fine tune, “To make small adjustments to something until optimization is achieved”
gloss, “To give a gloss or sheen to” et al
polish, “To refine; remove imperfections from” et al
refine, “To improve in accuracy, delicacy, or excellence”
rub up, to refresh one's memory
shine, “To make bright; to cause to shine by reflected light”
smooth, to round out, to wear away rough edges, to make more sophisticated
varnish, “To apply varnish”, “To gloss over a defect”
sleek, “To make smooth or glossy; to polish or cause to be attractive” [Unfortunately, wiktionary doesn't show an entry for sleeken, nor for couthen, both of which seem good choices. It does have smoothen.]

  • Good examples! Plus one. – rhetorician Jun 7 '13 at 17:49

craftmanship in terms of educating: to sharpen, to hone, to engrave, to sculpt, to carve (no worse than chisel;-), to form, to fashion,to reshape, to frame, to cast


Look for hyponyms of craft [verb]:
to make or produce something skilfully, esp. by hand; to put (something) into proper and usually carefully worked out form; make out of components (often in an improvising manner):

work, create, model, mint, fabricate, fashion, form, forge, mold, sculpture, shape, devise, build, construct, make; assemble

Takes some work on your part to compile a complete list. Some nouns for a hint: Hyponyms (each of the following is a kind of "craft")

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