Oslofjord folk college was lucky enough to be a “guinea pig” for the Civic School’s course on citizenship, democracy and communication.
About 35 of our students, spread over two course days, followed the course. At the beginning, several of the students expressed a somewhat weak motivation for a full-day course in democracy, but it was clear that they changed their opinion quite quickly. The two course instructors from Medborgerskolen managed to keep the students motivated and engaged throughout the five hours the course lasted.
The feedback from the students was also positive. In particular, they expressed enthusiasm that they were involved and activated throughout with tasks and exercises, and that they were challenged to collaborate, think and reflect on issues, not least in communication, ability to listen and source criticism.
The program was very varied, and we were “forced” to participate throughout the day
Erling Pettersen, student at Music Production, thinks the course was instructive. He especially thinks topics such as hate speech, incitement by politicians and communication are important and exciting.
– I particularly liked the debate where you first had to defend a point of view, then switch sides and defend the opposite point of view afterwards, says Erling Pettersen.
Principal Kristina Sletten Andersen believes that Medborgersolen’s scheme is particularly well suited for folk high schools.
– For years, we have worked to show that we are useful actors who sharpen the democratic and humane aspects of our students, and that we are thus carrying out a socially useful and important task. This course can be a very useful contribution in this work. The community school has content and a methodology that our teachers can copy and incorporate into our entire teaching program throughout the school year, so this is useful in several areas.