Agile Learning Facilitators — European Summer Camp on Evia Island

Or “Why we’re seeding an Agile Learning ecosystem in rural Greece, starting this July 28 — August 5.”

Calling all self-directed educators and agile learning innovators! Calling all homeschoolers and unschoolers in Europe!

Nature Play is thrilled to announce that Europe’s first ever ALF Summer short course is happening on Evia Island this summer, hosted by the stunning Stagones eco village — a remote paradise of mountains and beaches only 2.5 hours drive from Athens.

This Medium blog is your opportunity to dive deeper into our purpose story and get inspired to join our intimate group of educators and young families on this co-learning adventure of a lifetime.

When? Friday July 28th — Saturday August 5th 2017

Where? Stagones eco camp, Evia Island

How much? Full 9 day programme (including food and accommodation) is €360 — €1200 on a sliding scale. Limited spaces are also available for participation in the 3 day ALC workshop, costing €240 — €620, also on a sliding scale.

Register your interest today at http://transformevia.com/alf-summer or schedule a Skype with our camp coordinator to design your unique price plan.

This Agile Learning Facilitators Training is a co-creative, experiential training and incubator for a network of self-directed education projects in Europe.

It is for social entrepreneurs and change-makers who want to create learning spaces (like schools and homeschool groups) and societies that put ideas and concepts of Intentional Culture Creation, Self-Directed Education and Self-Organisation into practice.

The retreat is also directed at parents, teachers, facilitators of children’s activities and education enthusiasts who are looking for radical and practical ways to transform education at home and in the world.

So, what’s the story?

Something is stirring in the hearts and minds of three young families in love with their children and natural surroundings on Evia Island in Central Greece. Inspired by the exponential growth of Agile Learning Centres in the USA, we’re holding an intention to help cultivate a vibrant and colourful social movement behind self-directed educational models in Greece — a land where homeschooling is illegal and the state curriculum is compulsory.

We believe that Agile Learning Facilitation offers a flexible and iterative approach to self-directed education that could inspire a cascade of disruptive innovation in the coming years as pressure on an underfunded and outmoded school system continues to grow. Specifically, we’re dreaming of a distributed educational co-operative — hosted by Agile Learning Facilitators in pop-ups and more dedicated learning centres across the region — holding space for agile learners of all ages, from pre-schools and youth clubs to summer camps and innovation labs. We envision ALF Summer Europe to be a new beginning for young people on Evia Island — and potentially the catalyst to a brighter and more beautiful future for children all over Greece.

Why Evia Island?

Framing Nature Play as Europe’s first ever Agile Learning Centre is a key part of our wholehearted response to a convergence of crises in Greece, the EU and across the world. We hope to apply best practice in agile learning and regenerative culture design to our specific locality of North Evia; a political and cultural context where a vivid, lived experience of crises converging has become a daily shared reality.

By holding space for our children to learn and grow in a self-directed way — supported by an intentional culture and agile management tools — Nature Play will offer people and projects on North Evia an opportunity to connect the dots between important questions rarely or never posed in public spaces. We hope one complete story will gradually emerge; a common vision and strategy — or “place DNA” — for the regenerative development of this unique and abundant bioregion. This symbiosis of people and place is our passion, because we know that only together can we learn how a new way of living and working together is possible.

We’re already directing ourselves all the time. Everything we do is a choice. Conscious or unconscious, every individual is always in the driver’s seat of their life, their experience. What if we raised kids knowing this? What if we raised kids to pilot their lives on their own? — Bear, Agile Learning Facilitator.
How what ways can we Transform Evia?

What is Agile Learning?

Agile Learning Centers restore the joy of learning with a surprisingly effective educational approach: intentional culture supporting self-directed learning reinforced by agile management tools.

This is an exponentially growing educational model designed to embrace all the complexity and unpredictability of our modern world!

Let’s talk about innovative education. About play and technology. About teaching self-teachers and supporting a community of unschoolers.​
This is experiential learning — learning through doing! You’ll learn to stand in authentic (instead of authoritative) relationship with learners, and hold the space for even more learning!

Self-directed: Humans are natural learners. When children get to follow their passions, they engage deeply, learning more quickly and thoroughly — covering years of content in weeks at the time they choose to learn it.

Intentional Culture: At ALCs children feel they are heard, they belong, and they make a difference. As social creatures, we thrive in this kind of vibrant community which builds our confidence, heightens our communication skills, and calls forth our best selves.

Agile Management Tools: We use practical and concrete tools to make these lofty-sounding ideals real and reliable. These tools and practices provide visible feedback, effective self-management, clarity of purpose, and easy integration of new patterns as needs change.

Here’s Bear giving a TEDx on Agile Learning

Who is ALF Summer for?​

Facilitators and volunteers who want to work with passionate and self-directed kids.

This collaborative training experience is designed for those interested in starting an Agile Learning Center, understanding and practicing Agile Learning Facilitation, and developing a relationship with Nature Play — the ALC Network’s local hub in rural Greece!​

Anyone who is a/an:

● Key member of a co-learning/alternative learning or education space (founders/potential founders, facilitators, administrators, parents, students, etc.)

Social Entrepreneur interested in starting SDE spaces/societies in Europe

Education enthusiast, activist and changemaker

Teacher interested in bring SDE into her/his classroom

Parents who want to optimally support your children as self-directed learners

Do you want to facilitate? To support self-directed learners in both individualizing their educations and building a healthy community? Or are you interested in the intersection of Agile and alternative education? Or finding tools and practices to adapt for your own project?

How does it work?

Let’s change our conversations about education, so they’re as intentional and agile as we are.

Experience — Agile Learning Facilitators convene a space for new facilitators, parents, and members of ALC startups to co-create self-directed learning for the adults, as well as for children attending the summer camp.

Structure — We’ll start and end each day together, and generate the content of the program as well as schedule for each day leveraging the same kinds of tools for self-organization that we use in ALCs. This is experiential learning — learning through doing. Please don’t come expecting a pre-fabricated “curriculum.”

Core Intention — Participants will have the experience and confidence to facilitate at an ALC or another self-directed learning context. This is less about absorbing certain information, or learning the “right” way to use ALC tools, and more about learning to hold the space for learning, and stand in authentic (instead of authoritative) relationship with learners.

Days 1–3: The Basics

Join us for a three-day introduction to facilitation and Agile Learning! We’ll follow the rhythm an ALC keeps during school days: morning intention-setting, daily exploring, then regrouping in the afternoon to reflect.

Days 4–8: Summer Camp

Help run an ALC summer camp. Immerse yourself in the full ALC experience with all ages and practice facilitation in the ALC context. This is where the kids join in, amplifying the energy many-fold! An opportunity to practice deepening our abilities to hold authentic relationship with the kids, and also use the tools, lead some sessions, and support learners projects.​

Day 9: Reflection and Feedback

An informal day for reflecting and debriefing together. This is the time for getting feedback via peer reviews, reflecting on the gaps in your own skills you’d like to close, and deepening relationships with other ALFs.

Who’s behind this?

Stagones is an eco camp and natural building demo site on North Evia. It was established by people seeking a different way of life by experimenting with the notion of “living lightly on the earth.”

Nature Play is an educational startup founded by three families in love with their children and natural surroundings. They host regular meet-ups and camps for free and unstructured play in the outdoors of North Evia.

This camp is designed for an intimate group of 20 (+ children) — please register your interest early to save your space. Full participation including accommodation (camping, with more luxurious / comfortable options available on request) and food is €360 — €1200 per adult on a sliding scale, with voluntary donations gratefully accepted for children.

Every day a wholesome and hearty breakfast, lunch and supper will be lovingly prepared by our hosts. Meals will be vegetarian and vegan friendly, and sourced from our local network of organic producers wherever possible.

When? Friday July 28th — Saturday August 5th 2017
Where? Stagones eco camp, Evia Island
How much? Full participation in the ALC workshop + Nature Play camp + Integration day, including food and accommodation (camping, with additional options available), will cost €360 — €1200 per adult on a sliding scale, with voluntary donations accepted for children. Limited spaces are also available for participation in the 3 day ALC workshop, costing €240 — €620, also on a sliding scale.

Join us for Europe’s first ever ALF Summer co-learning intensive, in 2017 and beyond!

Register your interest at http://transformevia.com/alf-summer or jump into this conversation by commenting below. And if you like our story, please share it with like-minded friends and family!

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