SML COLLEGE – a safe space

Along with 31 other students (aged 9-16) I attend SML College.  I think as there are only a few people, bullying is non-existent. Everybody may not be your best friend, however you still know and respect everyone. Bullying is surprisingly common in regular schools, personally I find that fairly appalling. I think as there are hundreds of students in even the smaller schools, and you don’t really know 90% of everybody, and they will accept everybody, you are bound to have some bullies. As in SMLC, everybody that wants to join has to go through a trial week, and if anyone […]

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AOH visit & collage workshop

AOH visit & collage workshop

Review by SML College student Elai During Brighton Festival we had the pleasure of visiting one of the Artists Open Houses. Sophie Wake, winner of last years ‘best newcomer award’ and mother to one of the students at SML college, kindly invited us into her home. We got to see and appreciate her artwork, which mainly consisted of oil and watercolour paintings. The main subjects in her paintings are animals; from horses to birds and all creatures in between, she does this in an attempt to express human tenderness through the expression of those to whom she can relate.  Personally, […]

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Published in the newspaper this week

Published in the newspaper this week

I’m glad that your correspondent Pauline Hunter (Japan can teach us a lesson, i, 22 June) is in favour of school children cleaning their classrooms. Our students do that and more. Every day they vacuum all areas, dust, mop the floors in the toilets, wash up in the kitchen and so on. They do this because we have a joint resources committee of students and adults that decides on finances for the building. The students understood that cleaning would cost money so they agreed to do it provided that money saved was then available for extra learning resources and for […]

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Learning without classrooms

Learning without classrooms

200 people gathered at the Freedom to Learn conference at Summerhill School on 6th, 7th and 8th of May. I ran a workshop on different ways of learning particularly focused on learning without using classrooms. I generally find when talking with many people about learning that they have a bit of a blank in thinking of alternative ways of learning which don’t require the classroom. Somehow an approach which doesn’t need any classrooms can seem aberrant. The reality is that the classroom is a rather odd alternative that has been relatively recently created in human history. For most of the […]

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My internship at SML College

by Hannah Laura Bernard, our colleague from Germany who spent time with us earlier this term   In the context of my bachelor in pedagogy and educational science, I made a five-week-long internship at SML College this autumn. I wanted to know what school might look like when there is no curriculum, no classroom structure and no one who tells students what to do. Even though five weeks is a very short time, I gained various insights into operations at the College. I took part in the community meetings, got involved in the work with the learning groups, participated in the […]

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