I remember the first time I read Freire (and then Horton)—it blew my mind. I never considered education as a political topic, but the more I think about how those in power continue to teach the structures that maintain the power relationships and often the status quo (though veiled as change).
Oh, we are introducing ourselves (so fitting for a session on Horton) and mentioning what we hope to get out of this session. I am starting to get concerned, now that we are 15 minutes into the 45 minutes session, and we have only 1/2 of us introduced thus far. Looking out the window now (we are an inside-the-courtyard-facing room), I am noticing how some of the bricks on the inside look like they are going to need significant reconstruction. Ouch.
Ohh, just heard Vygotsky. Sweet. Another author who books adorn my shelves that have never been read.
Empire State College in NY college is exploding in the size of their Center for Distance Education.
Joyce is speaking about Horton, who speaks about community / labor organizer. Joyce is not about organizing communities—she is about helping others learn how to learn and do it.
Oooh, she is using the white board to show the model she developed and is using. First time I have seen this done here in the conference. Nicely refreshing . . . Now, the problem is I cannot read her writing on the board.
She is now speaking about one of her students who offered to have a community meeting online at his site, BuffaloPugs.org. Having 2 pugs myself, and I am now fully riveted. Having a set time online allows for more flexibility (with children, travel, etc.).
How do what Horton did in a F2F setting in an online context?
The course includes a process of thinking, which has a research agenda. This has a space
I am now getting lost with the drawing on the board, and while I like seeing how this develops, I think it could have been shown much more clearly using a PowerPoint build into the model, as that would allow her to still have the same discussion but for us to also see what she is writing (in a somewhat confusing graphical way) on the board. As Joyce has mentioned now more than once that she is having trouble reading her own writing, need I say more . . .
So, how can we do something online in the same way that Highlander did under Horton. How can we make a space, enhance the spirit of working together and social action, in a place that is virtual (and how we can understand this as a process). ARRRRRRGGGHHHHHHHH! Another drawing on the board . . .
This model should also include (as per Highlander):
- connection / collaboration
- safe space
She is using Elluminate, Facebook, and other tools like this.
I think there are a lot of interesting things she is doing, and am a little disappointed that she has not gotten to the point that she wanted to get to (as she acknowledged), as we are out of time and she mentioned that she is out of time because she did not know what time the session ended. It is unfortunate that she is continuing to present, acknowledging that the time has ended, though now half the people have left the session.
I think Joyce probably has a lot of amazing things to share about community organizing and how to teach it, though the information somehow did not fully come across. I want to read her paper and speak with her more about this as I am very interested in the work of Horton and how to bring it into an online world.
I wonder what Joyce’s work at Empire State (my home state) College is all about? Sounds like a very interesting program . . .
Nevertheless, Barack Obama is more popular than any incoming president in years.
Moreover, there are almost impossibly high hopes for him to affect the very change he has promised.
Will Obama’s “Hope We Can Believe In” live up to expectations? Perhaps the question should instead be reveresed–how horrible if it cannot.
I wonder if the consensus is so dire that any improvement will be welcome, even if only a few minor steps? I wonder if things have gotten so bad that the American people will forgive Obama for taking longer on fixing the nation than we would with others, partly because he seems to be such a good person, partly because we have so far to climb, and partly because everything seems so broken that where else can we go but up?
This may be a singulalry unique political opportunity, one that we may not see again for some time. Whatever the case, my experience shows it is easier to get into debt than out of it, easier to put on weight than take it off, easier to become self-righteous and intollerant than to collaborate and focus on inclusion. I wonder if the same may be true for this large and complex country?
Barack, we do put our hope and trust in you. At this point, we are nearly out of any other options, and only hope it is not to late.
Then again, by the fact that I am freely writing and publishing this blog post, it seems hope may still be alive.
If we were to write our own ideal job title, what would it be?
I thought that was the grandest thought-provoking question I have encountered in some time, and came up with “Director of Strategic Reflection.”
As a proponent of reflective practice within an ongoing learning organization, I think those of us within human resource development, adult education, communication, and organizational development would greatly benefit from more active (both structured and unstructured) reflection. How else can we identify the assumptions and patterns of behavior that stifle us from moving forward to create a more just and aware organizational structure and society itself? We who engage in organizational, management, and leadership studies know that when people within an organization are more aligned within one another and with the mission and vision, then the organization itself is stronger and healthier.
What would your ideal job title be, and what impact would it have?
It serves a population that is often overlooked and neglected in the economic and social strata in the city, especially through serving unemployed people with prior convictions who need basic skills to rebuild their lives.
I was inspired by one of the speakers who introduced herself as a former client and is now a vice-president at Citibank. It is nice to know that the US is still the Land of Opportunity, even for those who need the most help getting started.
That I was standing behind Richard Parsons, who donated the space for the event, was further testament to the good work Wildcat does.