Designing educational processes is a pretty funny task. Because how to design a process, that intends to not intend? Because if we intend to educate with a certain predefined goal, doesn’t that mean we claim that we know whats best for each learner? Can anyone ever assume that wisdom? Probably not, no wait: I am certain that we can not. It is a profound and redicolous offense towards the human intellect to think that one can even be close to knowing what any human needs to learn. Sure, we have ideas about what we think helps, like learning to read and write, to develop logic and critical thinking, to be healthy, history, geography etc. but, to quote a 12 year old who goes to school right now: “What do these things have to do with my life?”. Nothing at that moment. So this is crucial! I am not sure, let me refrase that: It is utterly stupid to think we know what anyone needs in any given time. We can ask of course. But do learners even know what they want to learn? Well, here is maybe a first indication what education can and should be: empower the learner to know what they want to learn. But here is maybe another little joke: the human allways learns, the brain never stops learning, our brain even learns when we are asleep. So what is learning realy? That is a topic for another time, for now, how can the 12 year old progress, what does he need to develop his potential, talent, well most of all to develop his choice?
I believe that this is the most crucial question any educational activity can try to attempt, to mentor an open ended process, in which the individual gains control, depths and joy about what they can and want to achieve.
Going Out There is exactly an answer to this concept. Vera Gurinova, expert and master mind of cooperation in the field of education has developed this project together with us partners on the basis of needs that our organizations have. In three training courses and two intermediate phases, we will develop selfconfidence to go out into the world to achieve our own visions, but also to engage community in their visions. The first training course has already taken place and has brought together educators, entrepreneurs, artists, doers, thinkers and enjoyers. That group has started to create the basis for collective innovation. Generation Europa will engage in this process building a platform that will allow the exact same opportunity for people in the 20th district in Vienna. Generation Europa is exploring how to create a physical hub allowing for unintended education.
Coming up next: a Series of local meetings, to create a concept, to brand and go out there.
Wolfgang Sieberth, early childhood mentor and project manager