Freinet: Experimentation, Democracy, Learning Exchange

I was introduced to Célestin Freinet today by Giorgio Bertini.  I am grateful to say the least.  Though the “school” aspects of Freinet’s writing are dated in relation to our designs for new learning today, what is striking is how useful these designs are when considering deschooling in all contexts.  Freinet worked in rural areas and gave permission to be free in learning-incredible.  I look forward to digging into everything I can find on the movement he co-designed with young people and their community.

An excerpt from an article I found:

By working, experimenting and observing children Freinet discovered techniques and came to his starting points. He refused in fact to call his work “pedagogy”. His opinion was that school had to adapt to society, within the limits of the fundamental starting points. By having this idea everything is open to discussion and can be changed rapidly. So he liked to call his work a movement, rather then a pedagogy.

The main starting points are:

Experiences and feelings of children have to be taken as a beginning for education.

Learning is problem solving, experimenting en discovering. If you are allowed to discover things by yourself, guided by a teacher and your group. learning will be more intrinsically motivated.

Learning must occur in a realistic and meaningful context.

School should not be isolated from society. There are no one sided authority situations. Education has to take place in a democratic context.”

From Bronkhorst 1993: See Full Article