About Slow Education

Welcome to Slow Education!

Slow Education is an approach that gives time for absorption in learning and reflection on learning: finding space and time where children and young people (and parents, teachers, schools, universities for that matter) can become passionate about and engrossed in their learning. Time to follow an interest and care about their work. Time to explore, experiment and direct their own learning. Time to reflect and absorb their learning without direct pressure of attainment targets or exams.

For me this idea has been in development through my work in schools over the past 5 years. I quickly became aware that in many (most) schools there is so much to do, and so little time! For teachers there’s all the planning and marking as well as trying to make sure that all your targets are being hit for that term or half term… And for the children as well, there are targets to meet, exams to sit and all the learning to do to get to these.

My work then, became about finding and creating space and time for absorption in learning and reflection on learning. Finding ways to give children and teachers purpose in what they learnt, time to experiment with how they learnt (including time to make mistakes) and ways to reflect on and embed the learning they do.

On this blog I will share my practice and thoughts on Slow Education, but more importantly I am already aware that there are many schools, practitioners and educators who have also developed practice and theory around these ideas (whether you call it Slow Education or not). This blog will provide case studies of schools, teachers, practitioners who have develop practice that works, and provide a space where YOU can get involved, asking questions, sharing your practice and thoughts.

I will also be publishing articles and blogs to unpack the idea of Slow Education and suggest how it might look in practice. Why is absorption so important to the process of learning? And how might these conditions be achieved in a classroom scenario, for example? If you wish to contribute with thoughts or experiences please get in touch. You can also follow me on Facebook (Slow Education) and Twitter: @Slow_Education

The first article will be published next Wednesday (21/09/11) and is entitled ‘Slow and Cool’ by Professor Maurice Holt to whom I owe a great debt of thanks for all his wise words, support, and encouragement in setting up Slow Education.

1 comment for “About Slow Education

  1. kooj
    September 28, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    Joe, this is really interesting and worthwhile as an antidote to the many pressures and dynamics that are cost everything and value nothing etc, but without getting to any nitty-gritty I wonder if ‘slow’ is not the best metaphor? Yes I know its used with ‘slow travel’ where there is also a more literal connection, and also other contexts, but with education it seems to me to an unwise choice – for example kids who are ‘slow’ is a very negative description, somehow simply using this term may be barred from developing for so many reasons. Also I think there could be much better metaphors that may resonate more deeply and still have enough catch to them… (no I can’t think of one right now…). I also think its important to bring approaches from Paolo Freire into the discussions…

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