In the next coming years AWE educators are going to focus on what unites them across borders of all kinds. AWE educators will try to map the common challenges they see for humanity, and the principles and learning methodologies they share.
The longstanding reflection journey will pass the International Council for Adult Education (ICAE) in Malmö, Sweden, 2011 and Mitraniketan in Kerala, India, in 2012 before it results in findings presented to the AWE International Council in 2013, and in an issue of the Journal of World Education.
This is stated in an early April letter to the general membership of AWE. It was sent by AWE vice president Chris Spicer on behalf of a steering group.
Important to work with like-minded educators
“I hope the project will help paint a clearer picture of the AWE,” says Chris Spicer on Skype from Massachusetts, “and make our movement more visible.”
“Our Edugame and some exchange programs are already visible on our website, but I am sure there is a lot more to tell and that our pedagogical practices can inspire others.”
AWE’s visibility is also closely connected with the possibility of inspiration the other way round, explains Spicer:
“The project will function as an open invitation for anyone to inquire, to collaborate, and to learn about AWE’s work. It is important to work with as many like-minded organizations and individuals as we can.”
Spicer mentions the ICAE in Malmö as an obvious place for inspiration to go both ways, especially because of the focus on Nordic folk education. Beyond this common theme, he expects of ICAE that it will become a mall of living traditions that can inspire World Educators everywhere.
Time-tested ideas may deliver the links
Spicer has an assumption that he doesn’t hesitate to share. He hopes the common ground will be found in a more encompassing learning practice stemming from old ideas:
“I believe we will rediscover common links in old ideas that have been pushed to the margins, but that I think the 21st century needs badly.”
Spicer refers to the so-called universal thinkers, such as India’s Tagore and Gandhi, Denmark’s N.F.S. Grundtvig, Brazil’s Paulo Freire, and many more.
”But whatever our inspiration from the past, we must make the ideas come alive in a new way,” says Spicer on behalf of the steering group.