Experiential Pedagogy in a Lighthouse on a Desert Island

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Wydawnictwo Naukowe UAM

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Empiryczna pedagogika w latarni morskiej położonej na bezludnej wyspie


The article is concerned with the social and experiential pedagogic effects of living in a lighthouse on a small desert island. Using the method of action research, we studied seven adolescents from juvenile institutions living in a small confined space for the duration of ten days. The main goal was to study the adolescents within the small confined social system of the island for the purpose of analyzing the resulting social changes and acquired social skills. Throughout the entire project, we observed the adolescents’ behaviour, initiative and inventiveness, and taught them certain techniques and methods of surviving with limited means. Using different activities, we also succeeded in finding personal resources for empowering the individuals. We developed the group and made individuals more open to conformation. The socially interactive activities selected strengthened the group’s cohesion, individual social competences and skills. The results have shown that a short period of time spent in an intensive group environment within a limited and specific setting can produce significant changes in an individual. The individuals gained valuable life experiences. Certain transferral discrepancies might represent obstacles, which is why we expect that prolonging the stay on the island would lead to even more pronounced changes and noticeable results upon returning home as well.




experiential pedagogy, children and adolescents with behavioural and emotional problems, island, action research


Studia Edukacyjne, nr 30, 2014, s. 303-320



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Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Biblioteka Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu
Ministerstwo Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego