ERIC Number: EJ1071809
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
Learning by Interest: Experiences and Commitments in Lives with Dance and Crafts
Laginder, Ann-Marie; Stenøien, Jorun M.
Vocations and Learning, v4 n2 p151-167 Jul 2011
In this article we intend to contribute to the understanding of interest-driven learning which occurs when people find and choose an interest of their own. This engagement continues over a long time and includes development and learning. The empirical material consists of 14 "learning stories" written by experienced and skilled informants in folk dance and different crafts. The purpose is to illuminate the diversity and complexity of learning and meaning the informants assign to dance or crafts. This is what we consider to be the perspective of "learning by interest". We also argue for the importance of understanding learning by interest as embedded in cultural heritage and social and cultural changes. Theoretically, we draw on John Dewey (1913/2009; 1934/2005). Learning folk dance or crafts is largely a question of learning by doing, which makes "experience" important. The interest and effort involved can in our interpretation be understood as experiences where expressions of "commitment" are embedded. The empirical analysis highlights three emphases in this illumination of the learning process. The first considers the individual development of skill in relation to broadened learning of collective tasks. The second perspective focuses on the interplay between learning in a life course and significant learning experiences. The third concerns the interplay between personal meaning and craftsmanship. In sum, this paper contributes to the understanding of learning by interest as a useful concept. In the final discussion we expand our perspective since the contrast is obvious between learning by interest and interpretations of the contemporary society, where individualization and lack of commitment is stressed.
Descriptors: Student Interests, Learner Engagement, Folk Culture, Dance, Handicrafts, Learning Strategies, Experiential Learning, Learning Processes, Skill Development, Learning Experience, Persistence
Springer. 233 Spring Street, New York, NY 10013. Tel: 800-777-4643; Tel: 212-460-1500; Fax: 212-348-4505; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.springerlink.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A