Pedagogy is the science of education and the special field of study for Birgit Brenner, who came to speak with the group today. Birgit works at ‘Arbeitsgemeinschaft Natur und Umweltbildung (ANU),’ and has coordinated with Jessie, one of the participants, in the past.
Birgit’s job is to coordinate, network and run seminars on the subject of education, and she was kind enough to bring one of her many tools to work through with us today.
First, she discussed with the group the problems she has faced in her professional life, including feeling powerless, a lack of flexibility in the people she coordinates with and the importance of being aware of your audience. The participants were given the opportunity to feed back on where they have faced resistance in their careers too. Did they expect to feel it in relation to their Innovation Projects?
Smaller groups then discussed this further, and four of the most interesting oppositions were chosen to be shared with the room. From this selection, one was chosen to be the focus for the next exercise..
Nomvula is hoping to bring ESD into schools in her area, but fears she will face a struggle to get some stakeholders on board. For this reason, the group, after choosing actors, played out the scenario in which Nomvula first brings her idea to a headmaster, teachers, students, parents and government officials. She found this to be good practice for a time when she really will have to convince others of her idea and after, the group were able to analyse her approach, suggesting where she could have maybe approached the situation in a better way.
Following lunch, Reiner Mathar returned to visit the topic of Mobility & ESD. He appreciated that the connection might not have been clear, but went on to explain how, actually, mobility is only going to become more important when looking at ESD, as more private journeys are travelled and more people seek this Western sign of growth. The number of subjects in school that could be connected to mobility was surprising e.g. Politics, Chemistry & Economics could all cover the issue in different ways. For an older age group, the importance of making public transport appealing and fashionable to use is currently the biggest challenge, with a big importance still placed on learning to drive and getting a car.
To look at this topic more in-depth, the participants broke off into four groups, to look at how communities should deal with
- An Urban area with existing transport
- An Urban area with not functional transport
- A Rural area with basic transport
- A Rural area without no transport
ICT with ESD was the final topic for today, which some disregard as being out of touch with ESD, the practice of being sustainable. However, Reiner stressed that this is the medium most applicable to young people now, and so must be utilised as so. However, he did question how secure this method of communication was, and asked whether it really did improve social ties, or does it serve only to exclude those who cannot gain access? Whatever the answer, he was sure that it should not take the place of actual contact with others and with nature.