Learning as a Community of Life

Learning as Community

Image design by Anneloes Smitsman for the r3.0 BP9 Educational Transformation Blueprint
  1. Becoming a Global Learning Community.
  2. Bioregional Learning Communities.
  3. Weaving the Mycelia Networks of Future Education.

1. Becoming a Global Learning Community

The word “global” has come to mean many different things — and not all positive. Globalization has caused much harm to our cultural diversity and planet through the propaganda of mono-cultures and unconstrained free-market capitalism. The idea of a “global” learning community may, thus, not sound very appealing.

  1. The key issuesCreate a map of what you consider the key issues in your local reality, as well as our larger world. Focus on the issues that require collective learning and collaborative approaches for resolving these.
  2. The opportunities — Add to your map the opportunities these issues provide for collective learning and collaboration in becoming a global learning community.
  3. The challenges — Now add challenges and potential barriers to your map, and indicate how these challenges can transform to become opportunities.
  4. What and how we need to learn — Clarify on your map what you consider the priorities of learning; specifying both the content and process of learning.
  5. What and how we need to change — Consider also the content and process of what needs changing, and the process for how we become the change for what is needed.
  6. What and how we need to act — Consider now what and how we need to act for resolving the key issues and engaging the identified opportunities.
  7. Support and wisdom — Complete your map by adding resources, support systems, wisdom, and allies (both seen and unseen) that can form through our collective learning process as a global community.

2. Bioregional Learning Communities

Bioregion means a territory of life, which can also be translated as an ecology of life. Bioregionalism focuses on shared ecologies as the basis of identity and belonging, and not nation-state boundaries. Bioregionalism is first and foremost a practice of, “intimately exploring, knowing, and caring for the natural and human communities within a region defined by nature, our bioregion (Bioregional Education Association, 2019).”

3. Weaving the Mycelia Networks of Future Education

Building on article 6 — Learning as a Pattern that Connects, let’s explore how we can apply the patterns of mycelia networks for developing the collaborative root systems of future education. A mycelium (plural mycelia) is the vegetative body for fungi, which grow as branched tubular filaments (hyphae) that nestle around the root systems of trees.

Including Indigenous Communities

We are not, and can never be, lone individuals. We are the sum total of our actions as a species, and this is why we can leave nobody out. We, as a species, holding one part of the Hoop of Life, are responsible for upholding that part. If we do not, the Hoop begins to fail. The Hoop of Life does not understand “us and them,” the Hoop of Life only understands “We”.” ~ Pat McCabe, Navajo Elder (in Anita Sanchez, 2017, p.165)

  1. Ngura — A sense of belonging to the land that grows us up. To feel at home in nature.
  2. Walytja — To connect with life as family. Our kinship relation with all the members of life, i.e. the trees, the animals, the rocks, the plants, all are family.
  3. Kurunpa — Love, Spirit, and Soul. Our spirituality and experience of soulfulness.
  4. Tjukurrpa — Creation period, or also called the Dreamtime, and the right way to live. How we align our intentions, behaviors, and actions with the universal principles and laws, and relate with this as the wisdom of life.

Including Youth in Educational Transformation

The prophecy of the seventh generation says that when the seventh generation of young people come, the great winter will end, for these young people with old spirits will lead and make change⸺a reuniting with each other and with Mother Earth will happen.” ~ Anita Sanchez (2017, p.203).

Other articles in this series


Brewer, J. (2019) Guiding the Emergence of Humanity’s Future: Reflections on the Pedagogy of Bioregional Regeneration. 22 May 2019. https://www.slideshare.net/joebrewer31/guiding-the-emergence-of-humanitys-future



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