Pur­pose of the program

The most extens­ive exper­i­ence in the col­lect­ive cre­at­ive edu­ca­tion is related to the field of leis­ure, hob­bies and social act­iv­ism, and this is one of the «con­straints» of the meth­od­o­logy. The act­ive par­ti­cip­a­tion in leis­ure asso­ci­ations and social organ­iz­a­tions require increas­ing amount of time and inev­it­ably come into con­flict with the need for self-determ­in­a­tion and pro­fes­sion­al growth in their chosen career, and some­thing of this has to be sacrificed.

Try­ing to solve this prob­lem we are work­ing on a mod­el of a spe­cial camp which is based on the prin­ciples of com­mon care ped­agogy with the cent­ral con­tent of the activ­it­ies being not enter­tain­ment but rather devel­op­ment in a par­tic­u­lar sub­ject area. In this mod­el, we rely not only on the old tra­di­tion of the camps based on the CCE meth­od­o­logy, but also on anoth­er old tra­di­tion of the sub­ject clubs («circles») and sum­mer camps, primar­ily of Len­in­grad / St. Peters­burg math­em­at­ic­al circles which also rep­res­ent an inform­al move­ment with its own tra­di­tions, atmo­sphere, etc.

It is import­ant to emphas­ize that a camp organ­ized on the basis of the CCE meth­od (as well as a club with rare meet­ings) is a bright and intense, but short-term event. How­ever, this event is con­sidered as a «pat­tern situ­ation»: it is a source of new exper­i­ence of human rela­tions, reveal­ing some­thing new about what you can do and what you value, what a group can do in its cre­at­ive work; and when you are aware of this exper­i­ence it can be applied to those life con­texts in which people live most of their lives.

Thus, if we want to learn and teach each oth­er how to har­mon­ize the pro­fes­sion­al and social activ­it­ies, inter­per­son­al rela­tion­ships and per­son­al growth — we should look for that har­mony in the «labor­at­ory of life», which a camp or a club offers. There­fore, we con­sider a sub­ject pro­file of addi­tion­al edu­ca­tion (like math­em­at­ics or any­thing alike) to be the most nat­ur­al organ­iz­ing base for the I.P.Ivanov’s methodology.

So «For­mulo de Integreco» can be con­sidered as an attempt to renew the Com­munard move­ment draw­ing on addi­tion­al edu­ca­tion, where stu­dents choose the sub­ject area as one of the cent­ral activities.

Besides, we con­sider cog­nit­ive qual­it­ies developed in sub­ject clubs (the abil­ity to work with multi-level abstract con­struc­tions, gen­er­ate uncon­ven­tion­al ideas, unusu­al ana­lo­gies etc.) to be extremely import­ant in social activi­tit­ies and neces­sary for com­munity leaders.

Anoth­er prob­lem is a gap between the depth of human rela­tions, mean­ing­ful­ness of life, inspir­a­tion that we see in the сamps, and the daily routine. But we think that the exper­i­ence gained in the camp will be used «at home», the accu­mu­lated poten­tial will be real­ized in our every­day work, stud­ies, social life and per­son­al rela­tion­ships. This idea can work because par­ti­cip­a­tion in the groups based on CCE meth­od­o­logy gives uni­ver­sally applic­able skills: cooper­a­tion, lead­er­ship, self-aware­ness and self-organization.

How­ever, in prac­tice, to imple­ment the stand­ards of com­munard rela­tions in school life or at work, as well as to cre­ate a new inform­al com­munity on the same prin­ciples is a very com­plic­ated task for an indi­vidu­al without like-minded friends nearby. There is a gap between «I want» (seen and soaked ideal) and «I can» (increased but still mod­est indi­vidu­al capa­city), which can lead to very ser­i­ous neg­at­ive effects.

This could be a per­son­al crisis («Com­mun­ar break­ing») neg­at­ive revalu­ation of the camp exper­i­ence and dis­tan­cing from it, or, on the con­trary, attempts to stay in «cozy» world of camps and to be isol­ated from the «real» world with its prob­lems. (The lat­ter vari­ant allows — and not without reas­on — to blame some groups for escap­ism and isolationism)

In the «For­mula of Unity» our aim is to min­im­ize this gap, and con­cen­trate on sup­port­ing sus­tain­able rela­tions between the par­ti­cipants. We con­sider the «product» of our work to be not just a per­son with cer­tain mor­al and pro­fes­sion­al qual­it­ies, all by him- or her­self in life, but a sys­tem of con­nec­tions between people.

We see (in the near future, and to some extent already in the present) «For­mula of Unity» as a grow­ing net­work of people united by a vivid exper­i­ence of co-cre­ation, people with mutu­al under­stand­ing, trust, aware­ness of their com­mon val­ues and aspir­a­tions. The great­er the dens­ity of the net­work — the less each par­ti­cipant feels «alone», the soon­er he or she finds help in solv­ing prob­lems and sup­port of ini­ti­at­ives, the easi­er it is to main­tain his or her beliefs and ideals.

In oth­er words, we try to con­trib­ute to the con­sol­id­a­tion of people with human­ist­ic val­ues such as tak­ing care of people, sin­cer­ity, respons­ib­il­ity, faith in the mor­al and cre­at­ive poten­tial of every indi­vidu­al, crit­ic­al think­ing, and we try to make pos­sible repro­duc­tion of these val­ues. In addi­tion, it is import­ant to make the pro­cess purposeful.

We try to pre­vent isol­a­tion­ism and nar­ciss­ism. Con­sol­id­a­tion of the com­munity (of any size) must neces­sar­ily be com­ple­men­ted by aware­ness of being part of a big­ger entity, by hon­est self-esteem. In par­tic­u­lar, in the «For­mula», we look for­ward to work­ing with every­one who has sim­il­ar val­ues and we are ready to leave alone any­one who feels that it is not his or her way in life.

Finally, anoth­er lim­it­ing factor when you are work­ing with the CCE meth­od­o­logy: it can eas­ily be pro­faned when some spe­cif­ic forms of activ­ity per­sist, but the mean­ing and the spir­it dis­ap­pear. So far, it is import­ant to take into con­sid­er­a­tion a crit­ic­al view from the out­side, live prac­tic­al con­tact with oth­er com­munit­ies work­ing on the basis of Igor P. Ivan­ov’s methodology.

«For­mula de Integreco» is prac­tic­ally in the begin­ning of its way, but it’s based on the many com­munit­ies‘ exper­i­ence. We are ready to con­tin­ue absorb­ing our friends’ exper­i­ence, ready to ana­lyze their mis­takes, to accept solu­tions found by them. There­fore, we wel­come any com­ments on the ideas, goals and prob­lems men­tioned here.