Social Learning: an interventional concept
Roswitt Strittmatter, Germany

Plenary session 3, Tuesday 11 July 2000, 14.00 - 15.30


In order to develop a healthy personality one needs a comprehensive learning process. The visually impaired child with his individual and social needs is the focus of our pedagogical research which includes personal-emotional learning, social-interactive-integrating learning, learning by experience and learning by doing.

Open forms of teaching (interdisciplinary projects) and varied teaching methods (conversations, role playing, co-operative learning, etc.) determine the entire process of intervention at the various places of learning and at the suitable fields of action. A positive self image as well as psychological and physical well-being, joy of living, a life affirming
attitude and independence with a fulfilling perspective on the future are central building blocks of a complete process integration of (visually) handicapped people into society. The path of this leads from internal mobility to outer mobility and thus creates the conditions for a "whole mobility" of a person.

These central goals are the foundation of the open special educational concept of intervention "social learning" which was developed and practised at the State-School for Visually Impaired (Staatliche Schule f�r Sehbehinderte) in Waldkirch 20 years in the making. Having become visually impaired herself as an adult, as well as having worked intensively with visually impaired children and youth, the presenter is searching for multidimensional strategies to overcome the effects, of being visually impaired (every day problems, attitudes and prejudices of society, behaviour deviation of the individual, negative psychological-physical feelings etc.)

A "barrier-model" shows us, how the problems of the visually impaired child is structured into various barriers and also discusses their connections. We will show how the individually differential process of intervention is carried out into three levels, a blocked level of counteraction, level of intervention, level of integration, i.e., how areas of intervention can
arise from barriers, and finally from areas of competence. This can succeed only in an atmosphere of mutual understanding and trust, whereby visually impaired children learn how to deal with their handicap more self-assuredly and more confidently, and from relationships which facilitate, social acceptance and equal, self-determined responsible participation and
integration into society.

(Full text not available in English)

Roswit Strittmatter: Soziales Lernen: ein F�rderkonzept f�r sehbehindertete Sch�ler Published by Peter Lang, Europaischer Verlag der Wissenschaften, Frankfurt am Main, 1999
ISBN 3-631-35388-X.

Staatl. Schule f�r Sehbehinderte
Wisserswandstr. 50, D-79183 Waldkirch, Germany
Fax: +49 7681 491594

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