Today I want to talk about freedom and control how it relates to a holistic approach to education.
I’m wondering, in what way does the curriculum and our approach to teaching and learning respect children’s right to freedom?
When we recognise them as whole beings, we recognise their right to freedom and to be agents of their own learning.
How do we as schools, teachers and parents ‘free’ the child to be themselves and pursue their own quest for knowledge and purpose? This is for every child, but particularly for those children that have been traditionally prevented from being who they are.
A friend of mine who works at a national park recently shared with me his experience of interacting with students when they came on school trips. He could tell by looking at the set of children whether they were economically advantaged or disadvantaged. He saw the difference in poise, and agency but what stroke him as the most telling was how free they felt to use their voice, in asking questions, and inquiring further. Regardless of which country this took place, it is a common story across the world.
To me, the purpose of education is definitely NOT to model and tweak children as future financial tools.
So as educators, I believe is our responsibility to examine the role we are playing in children’s day to day life. To what extent are we fracturing students in our subjects, our lesson, our classroom management? How are we creating a learning environment that is liberating instead?
My invitation to you is to share knowledge, to share questions, to embark on a collaborative inquiry regarding how can we yield control and allow them to find and use their voice? How can we design learning experiences that help them explore their identities and empower them to be fully themselves?
A wholesome human.
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Until next time, and
Keep igniting learning.