Methodological perspectives of Theatre Pedagogy and Experiential Learning: Which can be the real role of religion in education in a school with the people for the people?
Marios Koukounaras-Liagis, assistant professor, Department of Theology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
Workshop 2,5 hours
Part of the 2018 ATHENS GREECE INTERNATIONAL THEATRE/DRAMA & EDUCATION CONFERENCE
organised by the Hellenic Theatre/Drama & Education Network (TENet-Gr)
In this workshop we will try to combine the basic principles of experiential learning with theatre/drama and the teaching of controversial issues within the framework of Religious Education. Religious diversity in the modern world and especially in the European society and, above all, reconciliation among people who follow different religions or no religion are the main issues to be addressed. The aim is to answer the question of whether we can bring together at school, and more particularly within the curriculum, the different worlds of people. We will attempt to investigate how we respond to this question as educators, teachers and facilitators, while at the same time approaching the methodology of TiE (Theatre in Education) programs. During the workshop, the participants will actively participate in a TiE program that was implemented and researched in the Greek school and which aims to empower participants to approach religious diversity with respect for and acceptance of different beliefs about religion, faith or non-faith. With this experience, we will look at the pedagogical and theatrical foundations of the TiE programs whose design, implementation and evaluation are based on the political / epic theater of Bertold Brecht, the theater of the oppressed of Augusto Boal, the liberating pedagogy of Paulo Freire, the transformative learning of Jack Mezirow, John Dewey's pragmatism, Lev Vygotsky's social constructivism, Jerome Bruner's discovery learning, and Mary Kalantzis and Bill Cope’s experiential ‘New Learning’.We will reflect on our educational practice and the possibilities offered by the experiential pedagogy of drama/theatre in the teaching methodology of the Curriculum, such as R.E., History, Citizenship Education etc., and more generally in the didactic methodology of the humanities and social sciences. Finally, we will look for the space we have in the age of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) education, to propose the redefinition, in terms of Mikhail Epstein, of an education equally based on PILLAR (Philosophy, Information, Language, Literature, Arts, Religion). After the workshop we are expected to have at our disposal the theoretical and practical elements that will cause reflection and action so that we can perceive the drama/theatre pedagogy as a method that helps us investigate our action in school and its results and to reassess the education provided at school and the value of all the subjects of the Curriculum for a human school that educates people and citizens.
Marios Koukounaras-Liagis studied Theology (BA, MA PhD) and Greek Literature (BA). He is Assistant Professor at the Department of Theology of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and teaches Pedagogy and Didactics. He taught as a secondary teacher for 10 years and worked at the field of journalism and the radio. He researched the application of the T.i.E. Programmes in the Greek school and he has designed and applied programmes in collaboration with public and private organisations. He works as a teacher trainer, trainer and facilitator in Universities, Organisations, Foundations and scientific organisations. He has presented his researches in conferences and journals. He works with the Institute of Education of the UCL, the University of Birmingham and the Primary School Faculty of the NKUA. His research interests lie upon the teaching methodology of RE, Experiential Learning, Social Pedagogy, the Curricula and Intercultural Education. He has published five books on education.