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Bureaucracy, hierarchical bullying, leaders and lowly followers, and then for any other kind of governing with the expense and exploitation of the governed... they are hurtful and criminal systems for your benefit of the few as well as the misery of the many. There are better ways of living and dealing together. I have proposed and exercised a lot simpler, balanced, harmonious, and successful guideline for any good teacher and willing students to truly work and learn together.
Leadership and responsibility are shared equally, as long as all individuals a bunch first understand how it works and second, are eager to enjoy its productivity and share joy of learning and dealing together.
Much of the old "system" must necessarily be dispensed with: the pressures of fear, punishment, totalitarian authority, ugly competition, along with a resulting insufficient learning, joy, and boundless insufficient productivity. Replacing these "traditional" habits of non-learning with fresh attitudes of looking after one another's qualities and skills, sharing and helping, and developing a sense of confidence and trust in ones own integrity which of your respective fellows... and seeing and that great infinite benefits... this is what we had arrived all able to accomplish together.
Each individual is given the connection with planning and doing an agenda drawn up by each member of the group, using the teacher's guidance and experience as a resource of excellent use. First, the agenda of various skills is drawn up and decided upon, each one of these causing and approving in our outline products we want to learn. Thus... we have a plan, a syllabus, by which to draw our daily activities of curriculum and learning.
Next, we figure out what type of leadership or management qualities should be made, so that you can accomplish real learning skills together. The literal qualities: subject preparation; understanding group dynamics; and making the best possible use in our time together. Also... collecting our work material together, for daily use. The abstract qualities: selection of different ways; caring for your productivity of each and every member of the group; using a well-earned pride within the advancement of each and every individual; concern for individual and group behavior and harmony; enjoying the vast selection of skills and experience that could be achieved; transferring the learning skills and subject content beyond the Innovative Classroom Furniture, as life lessons.
What specific duties must each of us experience, so that you can make this daily venture profitable? To love who were and what were engaged in. Yes! This is the best of living, in and out of the classroom. Loving our work... and dealing to enjoy us.
We rotate leadership and management duties, once our agenda can be acquired by which to draw for daily lessons. Two students at any given time... work cooperatively as co-teachers; they have to both prepare beforehand to enable them to be relied upon to keep things moving smoothly. At the same time, students want this pair to succeed: if your student teachers do well, so will the rest of the class. They help one another to succeed... as a bunch effort.
We also rotate other Innovative Classroom Furniture management duties, i.e... the passing and collecting of materials; posting the daily agenda about the board; welcoming one's fellows upon arrival and causing immediately getting down to business; becoming host to the and all visitors, and taking care of interruptions quickly; taking attendance (to be checked by the teacher); active and giving aid wherever necessary; keeping an easy journal/log in our day's accomplishments, to be eventually used by the next set of two student teachers to produce their plans, keeping transition as smooth as is possible.
We must also encourage and eager for flexibility and spontaneity in the way you make valuable use in our time together. Issues surface... which need immediate attention. In addition, we want to periodically evaluate how were all doing. What are our strengths? Where might we improve? This is necessarily a constant process. Be as genuinely upbeat and encouraging as is possible. Once again... this learning experience transfers to every person's own life situation. Think of how this can and does benefit future and current family and community life. It works! The best critics and supporters... are students themselves.
It can be a beautiful experience, also from my perspective as both a teacher and student. Much affection is openly encouraged. Students are eager to visit class. Boredom as well as the need to cheat fade from existence. Memorable moments are experienced. Students invited others to go to: parents, workers, community mentors, siblings, as well as visitor/participants from our "special class" which, in turn, invited our students to visit their room and tell them also. Their teacher was thrilled to sign up. A not-so-foreign exchange.
Perhaps our only problem: just not enough time to fit everything in we had arrived eager to accomplish. Hence... it took over as the individual's option to carry on and develop his/her own objectives beyond our limited class time. Many "projects" were done outside, therefore the effects were shared using the group. Fantastic variety! One senior lad had initiated their own business when you purchase one porta-potty to be rented for farmworkers within the field (having no other such facility); he earned enough, eventually, to invest in another one, continuing to maintain them perfectly. An accomplishment for himself... while others. A young woman in the junior class crocheted warm and attractive baby blankets to be first given and later sold as lovely and useful items; I still use mine, many years later.
Life skills were a relentless, including curriculum lessons and developing a lifelong joy and appreciation for learning, and living of the same quality an existence as is possible, plus owning an immediate and extended positive impact on others. Horizontal management... a blessing to any or all... along with a horizon without limit or boundaries.
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