village learning (dot) org
via the about page:
The term villagelearning grew out of the initial ‘familyschooling’. The idea was to create a website that would showcase families from around the world who view children’s education as the family’s ‘responsibility’ as opposed to that of the state or any outside players.
The aim was to gather qualitative data about people who are embracing new (though in a large sense ‘original’) models of education. It was important that it be not only unschooling, homeschooling, Waldorf or Montessori, or any of the other models. Even within these more inherently open-minded communities it very easy and often happens that a ‘one vs the other’ mentality is created. As a term, ‘familyschooling’ would break through the divide by showcasing families across the spectrum who are concerned about the modern-day realities of education and thus taking steps to lessen its effects on their lives.
As a word, ‘schooling’ holds a negative implication for many people. For that reason, many people are starting to use alternate terms. An unschooler, for instance, would choose to say that their family’s education style is ‘child-led learning’ or ‘free-range learning’ as opposed to ‘unschooling’.
In that sense, though, even the word ‘family’ might hold negative connotations for some. People sometimes follow the route of villagelearning in spite of their family’s preconceived ideas or resistance. Learning is also no longer seen or experienced as a school-only activity and many a folk are (re)educating themselves well into a late age.
Hence villagelearning was born. Before the dawn of our current public education system that originated in Prussia just under 250 years ago, learning indeed took place in village-like settings. Children learned through taking part in the everyday life on the farm or in the village settlement they resided. This organic process of learning is now being mimicked in the unschooling community. With the advance of the internet, when countries as remote as Iceland and Tibet joined cosmopolitan cites like New York, London and Paris in forming part of the global village, learning opportunities grew in leaps and jumps.
Fast-forward to today, one is able – when you put your ear closely to the ground – pick up the sound of an education revolution so ever-growing, at rapid speed, that indeed it may be called an education evolution.
What are the Principles of Villagelearning?
- Learning is lifelong
- Learning is not limited to any one time or place, but can and do happen anywhere and everywhere, all the time
- Learning cannot be bestowed or transferred – it is an active process that happens in accordance with the motivation, will, interests and passions of the learner
- Learning and living go hand-in-hand; there is no one without the other. If learning be removed from the natural process of daily living, it is forced and therefore not lastingly successful
- Learning should include as much real-world practical knowledge as textual, fact-based knowledge – if not more so
- Education is progressive, which indicates a cardinal need for it to evolve with the times in which learners find themselves
- To learn is to empower oneself as a self-worthy, free-thinking global citizen – that is and should be the ultimate goal of creating a learning environment