DSM: Fw: An alternative teacher at a traditional school

Dennis Shaughnessy (deshau@jps.net)
Mon, 18 Dec 2000 19:16:28 -0800

----- Original Message -----
From: Anna Babina
To: discuss-sudbury-model@aramis.sudval.org
Sent: Monday, December 18, 2000 4:03 AM
Subject: DSM: An alternative teacher at a traditional school

Hello everybody!
I'm a teacher from Moscow (Russia). I'm working for a traditional school with strict rules, curriculum, authoritative mistress etc. But at my lessons I try to create warm atmosphere and democratic rules. I don't make tests, students may miss our "English time" as I call it instead of "English lesson", students may do whatever they want when they come, I just offer them activities, discussion topics and consultations.
But I have problems with administration. I always hear things like "How can you afford their sitting on the floor? They don't respect you!" etc But I feel that students need these English hours and some even enjoy this time. I also do.
So here comes my questions. How should an alternative teacher behave at a traditional school? Or may be you find it a useless work?


Hello Anna,
   Not useless but important and challenging work.
I've read a little of Leo Tolstoy's Tolstoy on Education,
about his free school. Though apparently lacking
in Sudbury Valley School's structures of democracy like School and J.C. meetings, Tolstoy described how peasant
children responded to freedom at his school. Could you
add the Sudbury structures and do well within the
school as Tolstoy had a free school within the Russia of the

In friendship,

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