ERIC Number: ED303612
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Nov-2
Reference Count: N/A
Self-Development: What Older Adults Bring to Education.
Wolf, Mary Alice
Although educators know that older persons bring experience, curiosity, and motivation into the educational setting, they often do not consider the aged to be engaged in development, especially in the development of trust. Education can provide for older persons a means for focusing on society and self. The classroom can serve as a stimulus to creative thinking; discussion, as a catalyst for the individual undertaking a new task in life. The opportunity to reflect and socialize creates pronounced energy. This energy, in turn, sustains the learner in the process of self-discovery, for each older learner brings his or her own agenda to the adult education classroom. However, the adult education format also can be used to integrate elders into the community, to give them the opportunity to share themselves and their wisdom, and generations that will follow them. Educational experiences designed for older persons could include (1) activities based on reminiscence; (2) activities based on vocational redirection; (3) activities designed to teach coping skills; (4) education as empowerment; and (5) participation as education. Adult education can take the lead in creating experiences in which elders are given the opportunity to explore their developmental agenda. At the same time, elders can teach those who come after them how to trust. (KC)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (Tulsa, OK, November 2, 1988).