Essentially, a folk school is a school that provides skill-based learning of traditional crafts. It’s a place where you can learn a variety of hands-on skills, generally with a focus on creating and teaching [not evaluation], offering a local, place-conscious, educational experience. Emphasis is on learning for learning sake, teaching specific traditional skills, and encouraging lifelong learning.
In our smartphone world of instant technological results, many find themselves longing for the classic skills and more reflective pastimes of days gone by.
We want to learn to work with our hands long enough to get lost in a creative moment – and we don’t necessarily want to create things alone.
Some of the benefits that can be achieved include:
- Building collaborations and networks among diverse community groups and organizations
- Building on local strengths
- Gaining appreciation of local culture
- Encouraging a recovery of local voice, empowerment and cultural memory
- Emphasizing dialogue, conversation, and relationships
- Offering the expression of an alternative educational paradigm; one that is collaborative, non-competitive, experiential, and holistic
- Providing a context for diverse groups to come together for shared learning
- Inspiring local economic initiatives that support the local economy