Some thoughts about living values in UNESCO’s educational approach to the world development
UNESCO values proved their value in forming stability of a sustainable world in theory and practice, being real foundation of social consciousness and civil responsibility for the sake of saving our common world without wars. Educational approach, connecting all the main spheres of education, is able to explain and realise the development of the world in difficult time of conflict and contradictions.
“The win/win approach takes a broader approach than the limited, although frequently used, win/lose. Many conflicts can be resolved by taking the broader perspective of “me-and-you” instead of “me-or-you”. Think of the planet as a giant clock with millions of big and little interacting cigs and you will have a passable image of what systems theory is all about. It forms a theoretical foundation for many modern management practices and for futurist warnings and advice. The skill of Broadening Perspectives (concerning all global problems to be solved!) lies in seeing the fundamental interconnectedness of all things, and in taking into account a wider system than the one immediately apparent when only looking at individual needs” (Helena Cornelius and Shoshana Faire).
These words may be used as one of the mental key structural stages of a whole project work in Teaching and Upbringing Professional Communication in International Teacher’s Association ‘Learning center. This project’s theory and practice has been effectively working out and introducing for many years of the center’s educational activity.
One of the items of the whole process was definition and description of the notion “Leadership” and its’ place in a sustainable modern world due to educational process in a system “school – college – University” and society as a structural organ through Educational Values.
Mission ITA (International Teacher’s Association) is to help students, their parents and friends to understand, recognize and adopt a sense of social consciousness, responsibility, duties and especially, civil responsibility for the sake of our common sphere of living, space of ourselves’ building and realization, our common World without wars and conflicts.
The main role in the process of educating and upbringing belongs to teachers, their individual characteristics, intellectual and emotional features, psychological stability, openness and professional perfection. Let us repeat already well-known: that is the way of nature to relax what is tense, to fill what is empty, to reduce what is overflowing. In every given situation the very Teacher is the wise leader, who knows what to do, why and for what to solve the problem rationally and effectively. The wise leader follows the natural order and does not take a consumer society for a model.
Living values in a world of development as categories of true living are to be explained and described in different spheres of living- in a family, at school, in society. Modern professional education may be the main contribution to the process of building and strengthening the Living values in mental, intellectual, moral and professional spheres of people’s activity.
In order to create a leader, recognizing the value of living values in his(her) future professional practice, the teachers tend to consider the Values as a subject of learning and personal development in classroom, at the classes with school-college-University students, and outside, with their parents and the community as a whole. The teachers have been preparing their students to achieve and develop. Such approach tends to consider those taught as a subject of learning and personal development. This task is very difficult, but teachers do their best in order to overcome all difficulties on the way to understanding the main truth – We educate ourselves and the others for the sake of the main idea : “Leadership in the world of a sustainable development means to defend environment and our global community, our education for non-violence and Peace for sustainability and development, our habit as skill to make decisions based on ethical principles [1, p.11].
The ITA’s Global Task as Teachers of schools, colleges universities is raising a reliable morally and highly prepared professionally Personality-Leader, having a sense of achievement to stay motivated and effective in everyday life. In order to achieve desirable result as a full understanding of the task declared and the result expected the teachers form the so-called Cooperative Power. The students ask themselves such questions and write down some thoughts to discuss later in cooperative work. The questions look like these ones:
- What does power mean to you?
- What role does power play in your life?
- Who has power over you?
- Who do you have power over?
- Around whom do you feel powerful?
- What makes you feel powerful?
- Around whom do you feel powerless?
- How do you diminish your power? [2, p.68]
The teachers’ work proved it was really very effective and wise to propose students they should out a project explaining the terms in their real meaning in everyday life. They named it “Big Objectives”.
The students could use stories, real events, memories of the other people, their own observations and resumes concerning sense and meaning such terms as: sense of power, feeling important, feeling loyable, self-confidence, feeling valued, feeling successful, feeling accepted, maintaining one’s integrity, managing stress effectively, being self-discipline, managing conflict effectively, feeling trusted and more.
To organize effective teaching process in modern system of education of different levels and demands firstly means to define the most effective strategic competences in teaching, may be named as “operational definitions in choosing methods “for understanding the importance of research thinking of teachers as well as students. It means the professional ability of teachers to realize in practice of teaching and communication the functional and key skills of observing, summarizing and introducing in the process of teaching research method, realized through operational definitions of the educational process and tools for productive logical stages and introducing them in the process with the help of the informative material as intellectual development basis, as truly research spectrum of personal responsibility as personality formation.
In the process of our common Teachers – Students communicative work in the frame and space of International Teacher’s Association a great work was done, has been doing for years as individual work and work in a team, workshops, seminars, role-plays, open letters, reports, poems, stories, conferences, scientific papers and so on. All these forms of communication in the field of our common Big Project and a sum of Mini- projects were contributed to a fund of Good Will Findings for the Sustainable World without wars. A blue dream of every teacher is to make students look forward to the next lesson. Lesson of common sense and high intellect and real knowledge.
When there is something that warms communication, the result is promising and good for all participants. Empathy makes communication work well. It is the flow between people whereby each can understand the other’s feelings and motives.
When we take into account our global intentions, we can pay attention to one more teachers’ global international mission – to learn the students (and their parents sometimes in personal conversations!) to recognize the meaning of the very term-empathy. Our colleagues from Australian University suggested a list of necessary phrases, explaining a notion “Empathy is when”. They are interesting and useful indeed to be read and discussed with the students of different nationalities in different countries. So, Empathy is When: I respect them; They value my opinion; We can have fun together; I don’t have to wear a mask or be very formal with them; They’ll forgive me if I get it all wrong sometimes; They would ignore me on purpose; I don’t have to be perfect around them; They respect me; They listen; They trust me; They don’t always have to be perfect around me; We like each other; They ask my advice; They tell me things that matter to them; We talk; We feel comfortable with each other; I see their point of view even though I might not always agree with it; I forgive them if they get it all wrong sometimes; They care about me and about what I think.
It is a real very effective program of communication, oriented to interesting and competent future in teaching, learning and upbringing all over the modern world, overloaded with difficulties and contradictions in societies. Talented ruling talented teaching helps to overcome all difficulties on the way to our common aim, concerning our students. The words of Martin Luther King Jr. are alive in all times and all countries, being the wise teachers’ motto: “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run, then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward”.
And, at last, the theme – topic for student’s composition, “Freedom and Responsibility” on “The TAO of Leadership” happened to be very effective and competent material on our theme declared for future:
Freedom and Responsibility.
Imagine that there are two kinds of courage. One is an active courage that gets people killed. The other in an inner courage that keeps people alive.
“Witch of these two is better?
No one can answer that for you. Each has its benefits and its drawbacks. Tao has no preferences.
Keep in mind that Tao means how: how things happen. But how-things-happen is not the same as what should-I-do. No one can tell you what to do. That is your freedom. That is your responsibility.
Instead of asking for advance, learn to become more conscious of what is actually happening. Then you will be able to see for yourself how things happen. You can make your own decisions about what to do.
Tao does not preach sermons or dictate behavior. What people do is their own responsibility. But the pattern of their behavior follows natural law.
This law is so general, it covers every possible event. It is so specific, it applies to every instance of every event.”
But no one can decide for you what to do in a given situation. That is up to you” (The Tao of Leadership).
- Azarenkova M.I. Living values in a world of a sustainable development. – International Teacher Post, Denmark, 2013, p.11.
- Cornelius H., Faire S. Everyone can win. Australia, 1996, p.68.