Below is the first chapter of the book "The ABC of IE".

Just as any other creative profession, moreover - as a kind of art - pedagogy is designed to reflect and shape the worldview of generations and to respond to changes in society. As an applied profession, it has its own original tools, a system of techniques and methods. In pedagogy, there are also objective laws, the knowledge and ability to use which makes a teacher a real Master. It is practical pedagogy that is, changing with time, designed to offer new ways of interacting with a changing reality, including both non-standard technologies for the transfer and acquisition of knowledge, and methods of interacting with the world in general. The properties of our profession, the laws by which it exists and evolves, are represented in the professional approach described in "The ABC of IE".

So, down with the intrigue: IE stands for Informal Education.
Maria Ivanovna
What is informal education? Doesn't it mean all these extra clubs, seminars, camps, and sections offered to children and adults after school/work/university?
There it is, the first confusion. Different approaches may be used in the above-mentioned forms of supplementary education, but not necessarily the IE approach. More like the other way around. More often than not, in supplementary education we still face the formal approach.

This confusion, of course, did not arise on its own. Indeed, for a long time, IE used to be, if I may say so, "on the fringe" of pedagogy. You bet! How can you let a child make choices at school? How is it possible to rely on their interest during the lesson?! Is it acceptable to mix compulsory and optional elements in the educational process? Yes, of course you can do it at a camp, a club, a seminar, though still with known restrictions.

Although the prediction of the future is an ungrateful task, let us take a risk: we are confident that IE is the educational system of the future.
Maria Ivanovna
But why do we even need to talk about new approaches? After all, everything is absolutely clear with pedagogy…
Dima Zicer
No, it is not. It has not been clear for a long time, and this can (and does) lead to very serious consequences.
In our opinion, a gradual transformation of pedagogy from a practical creative profession into a deeply theoretical discipline has been going on for some time (has actually happened!). As a result, many educators have completely forgotten how to answer the question of how (which is necessary for any kind of art) and focus mainly on the question of what. In other words, they try to deal with the content with little to no attention to the process. This trend leads directly to the fact that probably very soon the existing education system will be almost unable to hold on to its client - the student - by any means possible. The driving forces that are recognized as essential for keeping them nowadays are rapidly becoming unsuitable, proving insufficient not only to develop the motivation of students, but also to form it in the 21st century.

In fact, if the whole process takes place for the sake of acquiring some informative knowledge, then it can be obtained in just a few minutes through modern means. In this case, a participant in the process, if it is not a matter of some specific need, can hardly answer the question why the process is necessary.

Meanwhile, from the point of view of the IE approach, the main key to the success of the educational process is the student's personal interest in it. In particular, the recipe of IE is as follows: in order for the content to be perceived, it is necessary not to fight manifestations of personality, but to rely on them. The still existing modifications of the " Do this, or else!" option struggle to provide the illusion of some motivation. And soon they will not be able to provide even it...

The lack of practical answers, creative understanding of educational reality, results in the formation of an attitude to the student as an object of the process, which, in turn, leads to the emergence of a teaching formula that is a paradox for pedagogy:

They prevent us from teaching (educating) them
It is not about accepting or not accepting humanistic forms of interaction between the teacher and the student. This is an application problem. Already today, one of the main tasks of the educator is to answer the question of how to force the student, contrary to their desire, to remain within the existing framework. Can you imagine what tomorrow's gonna be like?

Being the most adequate embodiment of the humanistic approach and its translation into the language of practice, IE gives answers to the various questions posed by modern pedagogy, and not only pedagogy but the modern world itself. Nowadays students of any educational system are less and less ready to be content with dry explanations about a certain structure of the world instead of active research and establishing their own system of relations with reality, and there's nothing you can do about it.

Until recently, to introduce traditional models of relationships it was enough to declare, for example:
Maria Ivanovna
The younger ones are supposed to respect their elders.
Dima Zicer
And that's it. The model has been successfully introduced.
And today, in response to such a formula, the question "why" is being asked more and more often. No, it's not that today's kids don't want to respect their elders. In any case, their desire is no less than that of past generations to respect theirs. They just want to know what it means, how it is done. In short, they want to consciously shape patterns of relationships. Isn't that the subject of pedagogy?

In the field of education itself, the situation is similar. When asking about the need to comprehend certain knowledge, students are less and less satisfied with explanations about the impossibility of living without it. They, unlike their peers a few decades ago, know that there is no direct correlation between knowledge, attitudes to schooling, and success in life. And teachers have to repeat more and more often:
Maria Ivanovna
you do realize you can't succeed without studying, right?
Maria Ivanovna
who do you think you are without a diploma?
It is clear that such explanations do not contribute to the establishment of particularly warm relations between students and education systems.

By the way, everything mentioned above applies equally to the teacher. Being a hostage to existing systems, they more than anyone raise questions about professional survival in a changing environment and about new ways of interacting with students and with the subject of teaching. The teacher finds it increasingly difficult to answer our main professional question: why?

Where are the answers to all these questions? In what direction should the education system move? On the basis of many years of experience — our and our colleagues' — in a variety of countries and systems, we declare: today it is Informal Education that offers adequate, prompt and professional solutions to the problems facing modern pedagogy. And if that's the case, now is the time to talk about the essence of this approach.

Practical Pedagogy: The ABC of IE
"Practical Pedagogy: the ABC of IE" answers one of the main pedagogical questions: how to teach so that all participants of the educational process not only do not regret the time spent, but also get real pleasure from the process?

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