En el aula: la pasión por la Democracia!

Publicado Abril 2, 2015 por clarkedson en educación liberadora. Deja un comentario | Editar
Rolanda García Hernández es una de los muchos en Santa María Tzejá que abrazaron el objetivo de educación liberadora, en la cual los estudiantes son preparados con una visión y determinación de trabajar para un mundo libre de opresión, un mundo democrático.
Rolanda as a middle school studentRolanda, como la más antiguo de los doce hijos, sirvió como una segunda madre para sus hermanos, por lo que le estuve ocupada y preocupada durante sus años de la escuela primaria.  Pero ella fue lo suficientemente inteligente como para mantener el ritmo, aún así. Todas sus tareas del hogar le dejó con un poco de tiempo para socializar con otros estudiantes, por lo que ella era tímida e insegura acerca de su capacidad para continuar en la escuela de nivel básico, cuando ha terminado el sexto grado. (En la foto al isquierda es Rolanda como estudiante en el básico.)   Pero, aun con la lucha contra el temor y temblor, ella se fue. Su inteligencia nativa y una nueva determinación para lograr el éxito se apoderó como se dio cuenta que se podría hacerlo. Cuando estaba lista para graduarse en 1998 comparte la emoción con otros los graduados de enseñanza básico en ir al nivel diversificado a que significaba ir a un internado con una beca, porque no existe una escuela del nivel diversificado en la aldea. Continue reading

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In the Classroom: A Passion for Democracy!

Rolanda García Hernandez is among the many in Santa María Tzejá who embraced the goal of liberating education, that students are prepared with a vision and determination to work for an oppression-free, democratic world.
Rolanda as a middle school studentAs the oldest of twelve children, Rolanda served as a second mother for her siblings, so she was busy and preoccupied during her primary school years.  But she was smart enough to keep up, even so.  All of her household tasks left her with little time to socialize with other students, so she was shy and insecure about her ability to continue in middle school as she finished the sixth grade.  But, fighting her fear and trembling, she went.  Her native intelligence and an emerging determination to succeed took hold as she found she could do it.  When she was ready to graduate in 1998 she shared the excitement with other middle school graduates about going on to high school  That meant going off to boarding school on a scholarship, because there was no high school in SMT.  At left, Rolanda in middle school.

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In the Classroom: Students in Full Empowered Voice

How do students in school find their own voice—in the sense of being able to form independent opinions and confidently convey them in a compelling way to others?  As we all know, people who have voice in the sense defined here, have power to make things happeOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAn.  So how do they stimulate this power in the schools in Santa María Tzejá (SMT), the case study village of my book?
The regional state supervisor spoke about how well they do it when he would come to SMT.  He said these children had energy and confidence in their own voices, even with him as a stranger in the room.  They made comments and asked questions in response to things he shared with them.  In contrast, he told me, in other villages the students were quiet, shy and unable to form questions.  What makes the difference in this one village?

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¿Cómo lo hacen? Educadores Libertadores en el aula. Post # 1

Publicado 18 de marzo 2015 por clarkedson en Educación, indígena, la educación liberadora, la opresión, la educación rural, educación en Estados Unidos. Deja un comentario | Editar
“Educación liberadora” tiene un sonido agradable a él, pero lo que realmente sucede en el aula? Al leer sobre ello aquí, ¿cómo se compara con su experiencia de la educación? Sus comentarios al final de la entrada son más que bienvenidos.

Iniciamos  con el cuadro grande. Considere el refrán de * Paulo Freire, “La educación como práctica de la libertad!” Su clara contrario de eso fue “OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALa educación como práctica de la dominación.” Usted puede recordar María Hernández, una maestra de Santa María Tzejá, desde un post anterior. (En la foto a la izquierda) Como un niño que era un estudiante en un salón de clases en SMT poco antes de que el ejército guatemalteco quemó el pueblo a la tierra. El maestro en ese entonces era probablemente un soldado que actúa como un maestro que dijo a los estudiantes que obtendrían un golpe violento de un palo para cada error que hicieron en matemáticas ese día. Ella hizo 13 Continue reading

How do they do it? Liberating Educators in the Classroom. Post #1

“Liberating education” has a nice sound to it, but what actually happens in the classroom?  As you read about it here, how does it compare with your experience of education?  Your comments at the end of the post are most welcome.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALet’s start with the big picture.  Consider Paulo Freire’s* masthead challenge, “Education as the Practice of Freedom!”  His clear opposite of that was “Education as the Practice of domination.”  You may remember María Hernandez, a Santa María Tzejá teacher, from an earlier blog post.  (pictured left) As a child she was a student in a classroom in SMT shortly before the Guatemalan army burned the village to the ground.  The teacher at that time was likely a soldier acting as a teacher who told students they would get a swat of a stick for each error they made in math that day.  She made 13 and his one option for her was where she would like him to hit her.  She said, as she told me about this searing experience, “All over my body.”  In that class hers was an extreme experience of Education as the Practice of Domination.  The central notion of that kind of miseducation is teacher dominance of the students, whether by, as in this case, corporal punishment or, more usually, by the authoritarian, oppressive practice of the teacher talking all the time to students who are expected to be submissive and quiet.

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“The Past Is With Us:” (Violent) History in Real Time

Theatre group in 1995How do we engage and challenge teenage students in their guts and heads at the same time?  How do we make history come alive in a way that changes the way they think about themselves and their future?
      Background:  Santa María Tzejá, Guatemala, was burned to the ground in 1982 in the country’s civil war.  The population was separated, with half fleeing to refuge in Mexico and the rest remaining at the village site.  Twelve years later the original population was reunited at the village site.  Here’s where the story begins.

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Open for debate: “Education is not politically neutral!”

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For the first several years that I visited the village, beginning in 1985, there were almost no books in Santa María Tzejá, the case study that is the basis for my book.  There were no computers, no internet.  There was no lined-in electricity.  Students in the school received just two notebooks and two pencils.  Teachers had their books from which they could teach the state curriculum.  The goals of that schooling were to give very basic reading, writing and math skills, along with isolated facts about national heroes and a superficial patriotism built around the flag and national holidays.

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