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Place-based education

Taalim-Forum is involved in the work on developing and creating such educational environment which applies complex interdisciplinary approaches that combine recourses of natural sciences and humanities. Such environment allows knowledge to help in shaping someone’s own worldview, to understand how the natural and social world is organized, to find own place in it. Ecological knowledge here sets the foundation for comprehending all the rest.

The concept and approaches of place-based education open great opportunities for educating new generations to be ecologically conscious citizens able to make important decisions.

The pilot/experimental projects of Taalim-Forum promoting place-based education approaches have been implemented in the work with school and university students, teachers and faculties and were aimed at searching of new opportunities in teaching and learning. This included going out of the school buildings that create among students the feeling of closure, control and pressure. The ideas of the project assumed that students will be using their hands, feet, eyes, ears and other sensorial organs for studying their native land.

In such work we mean to demonstrate interconnectedness and interdependency of the social and natural environments through developing of sensorial perceptions of the surrounding world and direct experiencing and communication with the place. The project provides the following opportunities to students:

  • To learn more about themselves through becoming aware of their roots and connections with the land they were born and live;
  • To become aware of their responsibility in keeping the balance and harmony in relationships between people and nature;
  • The experience the feeling of respect to the land;
  • To become more active through changing personal behavior and development of ecological consciousness.

Our efforts aimed at changes on the personal level of schoolchildren in the future will bring changes in their surroundings and communities they live. We are open for collaboration with teachers and organizations interested in using and promoting place-based educational teaching and learning methodologies and other innovational approaches.

More about place-based education in the article of A.Djumabaeva “Connections with place in eco-education”.

Projects and activities on promoting place-based education:

  • Project “Promoting place-based education among faculties, teachers, researchers and students” (2007). The project was supported by the Christensen Fund. Within the project the three-week workshop was organized for faculties, teachers, researchers and students from Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, and Tajikistan and 7 small research projects were realized by the participants of this workshop.
  • School project “Greetings to my Native Land” (about the project)
  • School project “Greetings to my Native Land” (2007)
  • School project “Greetings to my Native Land” (2008)
  • School project “Greetings to my Native Land” (2009)
  • School project “Greetings to my Native Land” (2010)
  • Summer Ecological Seminar for university students (2009)
  • Round table for university students “Ecology of Kyrgyzstan through eyes of students” (2009)
  • Workshop “Eco-education at schools: problems and finding solutions” for school teachers and faculties on problems of teaching ecology (2009)
  • Workshop “Issues on development of eco-education in Kyrgyzstan” for university instructors (2010)
  • Round table “Education through Reconnection” (2010)
  • Workshop-training for teachers on place-based methodology and implementation of the school project in 2010 (2010)

 

The idea of organization of Summer Ecological Seminar for university students (SES) with camping in high mountain pasture became part of our work on promoting approaches of Place-based education.

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The purpose: to discus approaches of place-based education and perspectives of joint realization of the School Project “Greetings to my Native Land” in 2010

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In 2010 the project expanded the number of participating schools in Bishkek and regions. This time the Project have been implemented by the interested schoolteachers with the support of Taalim-Forum’s coordinators.

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In 2009, the school project included educational activities not only for city schoolchildren but for village children as well.

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Like the first project, piloted in 2007, this project was aimed at direct involvement of urban children in living cultural traditions, life of the village, learning about crafts, folklore, national horse games during staying in the village; learning about spiritual and moral values of people, cultural and informational exchange of knowledge and skills between urban and village children.

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 In 2007 the first school project was piloted with participation of the Bishkek school-gymnasium #24 and secondary school of Barskoon village in Issyk-Kul region.

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All small projects were intended to realize the ideas of Place-based education in practice, as well as to apply research and writing skills that were obtained during the workshops.

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