DSM: RE: sense of community

From: Joe Jackson (shoeless@jazztbone.com)
Date: Fri Dec 07 2001 - 14:14:45 EST


What's up Ann.

> How do Sudbury kids , in
> your observations, experience community at school? Who tends
> to be included in that
> community- just their fellow students and staff, or
> parents,as well?

Yes, all three.

> Do
> parents feel it?

It depends on who you ask. I feel like when parents walk through the
school they are warmly received and part of things, however I know some
parents complain that they feel like they aren't a part of "it", "it"
being a sense of community or belonging or whatever. I think that's
entirely dependent on the expectations of the parent and what
"community" means to them. That's why I can't answer you first question
up there.

> Is their any altruistic activity? (I think it was
> Joe that mentioned helping out local fire victims.) If so,
> is it initiated by kids or adults?

The fire victims thing was initiated by Romey. It was her neighbors.
Yes, there is altruistic activity. Last year the students put together
this big revue production-type thing and went around to a bunch of
old-folks homes and did it. They were really into it.

They also had this big kitty-rescue drama last month where there were
these dying kittens under the school. They got a big trap and trapped
them one by one and nursed them back to health and dressed them in
little outfits and they all survived and were all adopted into homes of
students. That's your feel-good movie of the year right there.

Also, lots and lots of kids worked hard on the construction of the
school in summer '98. That counts.

> How do you think caring
> about the world outside your own little one (ie school,
> family) is learned?

I think that's something kids are born with. Don't laugh, that's really
what I think. Kids are the biggest humanitarians on the planet. I
think sometimes they unlearn it while growing up, sometimes not, and
sometimes they relearn it. I know the follow-on question is probably
"does the model help preserve that which Joe considers the altruistic
instinct within kids" and the answer is I have no clue. I think most
public school kids are pretty altruistic, too. I don't know if that has
anything to do with the type of schooling.

-Joe

> Sorry. Lotta questions together, but all related. Like I said
> before, can't tell much from my perspective at SVS.

How do you think your perspective at SVS is limited?

-Joe

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