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Experiencing a New Culture: Bailey Bermond ’19 at The Antioch School

Choosing and being chosen to work at the Antioch School aligned fruitfully.  I come from a familiar culture: I value community, connection, nature, compassionate communication, authentic expression and individuality.  What makes this experience culturally different is my role within the school — from a student’s perspective to a supporting role or position as an employee — my personal responsibilities are different and my social interactions have shifted.

Everyday leads me to a new adventure, and Monday’s it’s in the forest.  I feel competent in the newly implemented Forest Kindergarten curriculum, leading hikes, cooking outdoors in our forest classroom, and facilitating a natural inquisitive thought process. Here is some insight from our recent visitors from the Cincinnati Enquirer, extremely pleased to spend the day with us.

Through observation of standard classroom procedure at the school, I have become increasingly aware of various children’s needs and draw from that information in order to implement problem-solving/conflict resolution strategies.  Ultimately, I have led an observatory role and this makes working highly educational.

The Antioch School has served as an Oasis during the past two quarters as a full-time student at Antioch College.  The experience has opened my eyes to the contrast of traditional versus self-directed education.  It has fed my passion for alternative curriculum models where the student plays a large part in their own exploration of life.  It is my belief that this leads to a lifetime love of learning.  This juxtaposition of a traditional college classroom and the radical freedom of the Antioch School has been challenging and an effective way to assert my values.

The Co-op curriculum paired with the Miller Fellowship has provided me with the exceptional opportunity to do observational research immersed in an ideal child-centered environment.  The children are trusted and respected, free to be who they are and therefore creates mature, responsible and trustworthy individuals engaged in everything they put their minds to. This has affected my over-all college experience in such a way that I feel this is why I came.

Photo Credit: Cincinnati Inquirer

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