Education for Democracy | Fundación Escuela Nueva | Vicky Colbert


If you bring somebody from the health
sector from a hundred years ago, a doctor into a hospital today, the doctor is lost. Totally lost, so many new things have happened. If you bring a teacher from a hundred years ago into a classroom today the teacher is not so lost. So this is telling us a lot of things. Upon returning from my graduate studies
abroad when I came back to Colombia totally convinced that without quality
education, there can be no economic development, no social development, no
sustainable development. Without quality basic education you cannot maintain the
goals in health or in environment or in food security. So you know, this was for
me the key in area of intervention. And we started working with these remote
rural multi grade schools these are the majority of the schools in the
developing world that are not permitting that countries reach the Millennium Goals. So this was the beauty, because these
schools force you to innovate anyway you have to break away from the conventional model of education teacher driven pedagogy, teacher centered into really child centered. Everybody talks about it
but you don’t see this in the classrooms. If you go into a traditional conventional classroom, you see a teacher standing in front of children, children sitting in rows and a teacher giving out information. In a really child centered
education and personalized and self, children are working in small
groups, looking at their eyes not their necks interacting and dialoguing. We had to transform the concept of the traditional textbook into dialoguing textbooks. Teachers don’t have time to plan everyday wonderful lessons not even in, you know elite schools and lesson public schools in developing countries. It was a ship from transmission of knowledge to social
construction of knowledge. We had to rethink everything and think of a new
role of the teacher instead of being a transmitter of facts. Information is changing permanently so the real role of the teacher is to facilitate, to orient,
to catalyze, to motivate, to be a good leader with values. All countries measure their language and math but how to measure empathy, how to
measure self-esteem, how to measure fairplay, how to measure solidarity, these are the other issues that we want to measure. That are more related with civic
engagement, with citizenship. This is an issue of having good citizens like John Dewey said nine years ago. It’s not only academic results you need social skills
of how to live together peacefully. The way one learns has an impact on politics,
on citizenship, on democracy, on peace.

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