Educating in Nature

Ch13 Concluding the Agreement

In the book of Toltec wisdom "The Four Agreements" our upbringing is considered that of making an agreement. This agreement begins at home for the child, and then as the child gets older those agreements are made in the wider society especially in education; as a teaching tool education would do well to look at the LINK Four Agreements in terms of personal and social education. In this first part of “Educating in Nature”, what started out as a consideration of vision has become a mixture of examining the agreements we make in education as well as improving the way education makes those agreements; those improvements I have recommended in this part are mostly not visionary.

Basically I have grouped this examination of our agreements in education as:-

Corporate Paradigm
Quality Portfolio
Autonomous Mastery in a wifi classroom
Natural Development

With corporate paradigm I have simply described the overarching control within the education system. Before we can consider visionary change, we have to know what we are up against. When we realise that our education has developed into being primarily designed for the corporations, any vision for change is unlikely to have any effect - especially as the broader corporation control is increasing. When we look at vision in the next part, this huge restriction needs to be recognised.

With the quality portfolio we have a recommendation that fits in with the existing agreement of the corporate paradigm. Testing benefits no-one; even the few who do well in tests would learn more with a quality portfolio as within that portfolio would be assessments of personal motivation etc. Does a successful test-taker really benefit the corporations? There would of course have to be adjustments so that those in charge of the corporations could ensure success for their kids as happens with test-taking in private schools.

As previously mentioned this book fell into a lull for a number of years until during my centring summer LINK I understood the vision I wanted for education. I have also mentioned how fashion – custom and practice – very quickly change in education. When I retired wifi classrooms were the prerogative of rich schools, now they are probably more common-place; unfortunately I have not kept up with education to know. As I am not interested in such fact-checking there will have been examples I discussed that you would correctly have said - that is happening already. It is therefore better to consider this theme as autonomous mastery, and that has a notion of vision about it.

With the final theme of natural development we have such a breadth of possibility that would include both vision and agreement. Clearly this theme has been incorporated in a token sense but in terms of the ecology and fossil fuels is in direct contradiction with the corporate paradigm. But when we consider the vision in the next part there will be even further implications. Some apologists (careerists) for the paradigm might well say that the corporations are working in harmony with ecological development, but a clear examination of their policies belies this double-speak. This theme is the main theme that will meet resistance from the paradigm.

I strongly recommend we take these themes forward when we examine the vision of the second part.