NO. 17 June-July 2004              THIS MONTH'S THEME: More on TRAINING FOR TRANSFORMATION

Connecting popular and community-based educators and activists to resources for improving educational work in social movements against oppression and for democracy, sustainability, social justice, and peace.

A monthly newsletter about the Popular Education/Community Organizing Resources Collection in the Penny Lernoux Memorial Library at the Resource Center of the Americas, 3019 Minnehaha Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55406. It is a collection of practical materials for facilitators and practitioners to improve the educational work in our movements for democratic social change. The three main parts of the collection are 1) Materials in English, 2) Materials in Spanish, 3) Books by Paulo Freire some titles in Spanish. An annotated bibliography with links to where to purchase materials will soon be back on the web. Watch for future announcements for the internet address.



Partners Companion To Training For Transformation compiled and written by Maureen Sheehy. Partners Training for Transformation, Dublin, 2001, 132 pages.

This book is drawn from the twenty years of experience that the Irish group, Partners Training for Transformation (Partners), have had running workshops in Ireland and elsewhere using Anne Hope's and Sally Timmel's Training for Transformation Handbooks as their primary resource. (See Popular Education News, Nos. 16 and 8, for reviews of the four volumes of these handbooks.) The book was compiled to share many of the exercises that have been adapted and new exercises that have been developed by Partners in those twenty years. The author, and Partners with whom she works, wish to make these new resources available to more people.
In the Introduction the author writes:

In addition to offering new and adapted exercises, this manual also covers two other areas: 1. It outlines how Training for Transformation workshops are pieced together by Partners. 2. It gives some examples of (1) How Training for Transformation has been used as a tool to do listening surveys, and (2) codes and problem-posing materials that have been useful.

The Introduction also advises that "the manual is mainly for those already conversant with and skilled in the Training for Transformation experiential process methodology"

I was introduced to this book on a recent visit to Uganda by the African Institute for Social Development (AISOD), an institute experienced in using the Training for Transformation materials. It was the director of AISOD, Peter Lubwama, who had first alerted me in 2000 to the publication of book four of the well-known handbook series by Hope and Timmel.

Part One explains how workshops are done by Partners, Part Two explains the adapted and new exercises. The exercises are organized into 26 categories with three to thirteen exercises in each. It is an impressive compilation. The categories on adult learning and facilitation skills caught my eye as did the ones on Team/Group, Dealing With Conflict, Social Analysis, and Spirituality/Soultime. There are also categories that deal with many important issues of our times, such as Money, Poverty, World Debt, Refugees, and The Environment. I am eager to have more time to explore the succinctly and clearly written explanations for each exercise. This book is another valuable part of a popular educator's library.

The book is available from: Partners Training for Transformation, 24 Northbrook Road, Ranelagh, Dublin 6. E-mail: Review by Larry Olds


It Ain't Just About the Vote: Defining Democracy For Movement Building - A Popular Education Toolkit From Project South

NEW ADDITIONS TO WHERE POPULAR EDUCATORS WILL GATHER IN 2004 (See where popular educators will gather for a full list)

July 21, 2004 at the National Alliance for Democracy Convention: Another Kind of Movement Education is Possible: Popular Education. (Betsy Barnum and Larry Olds, popular educators from Minnesota, will facilitate a 4+ hour portion of the program exploring popular education ideas and tools for building our movements for a democratic and just society. There will also be a follow-up workshop in the concurrent sessions to further develop the ideas and tools.)

July 23-25, 2004 at the Boston Social Forum: Popular Education for Activists: A flipchart and a handful of magic markers is not enough! Our movements are made up of many learning activities. In rallies and marches, meetings, speeches, conversations, workshops and other places, we exchange information with the goal of inspiring each other and spurring more people to take action for social justice. We can make the most of these opportunities when everyone's experience is respected and participation is democratic. Popular Education, popularized by Brazilian educator and activist Paulo Freire, is widely used throughout the Southern nations to organize for peace and social justice. The practice helps groups gain understanding of their common problems and take action for democratic change and empowerment of the disempowered. Anyone with a commitment to social justice can learn to practice Popular Education but not without giving up some old habits.In this workshop, we will explore the concepts behind Popular Education with active tools you can pick up and use in peace and other areas of organizing.

Facilitated by Louise Dunlap, a community activist and popular educator - she is completing a book on writing for social change, and Susan Moir, a labor activist and popular educator who has developed and delivered train-the-trainer courses for Popular Educators for fifteen years.

July 15-18, 2004 Project South The Midnite School: Creating a Vision for Our Movement Atlanta, Georgia (A four-day gathering to examine our current movement trends and sketch a blueprint for a new world. The Midnite School is a name derived from the midnight literacy gatherings of enslaved Africans preparing themselves for escape to the North.) Limited to 75 people. For an application contact Stephanie or Dan at (404.622.0602)

July 30-Aug 1, 2004 Highlander Center Social Change Workshop New Market, Tennessee (This workshop is designed to provide a Highlander workshop experience for people working for social change.) For information contact or

Sept 10-12, 2004 Grassroots Global Justice Coalition The North/South Encounter on Popular Education and Global Justice El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. (A Border Reality Tour that will precede the conference on September 9th. Activities are being planned to take place on both sides of the border to facilitate the participation of as many grassroots groups as possible. The conference will focus on the use of popular education and innovative approaches to building effective social justice action.) For Info


(*those with online bookstores)

*Catalyst Centre ( )
*Highlander Center ( )
*IPEA ( )
*Resource Center of the Americas ( )
*Growing Communities for Peace ( )
Centre for Popular Education (
Project South ( )
Center for Popular Education and Participatory Research ( )
Pop Ed Links Directory (
WE LEARN: Women Expanding-Literacy Education Action Resource Network(


Education as social practice is focused specifically on production, circulation and transmission of specified knowledge, norms and behavior. As a social practice it is not neutral; it is rooted within the perspectives of a given model of social organization. Popular education is defined as a social practice that clearly is at the service of popular groups and their interests. Historically, popular education has been characterized by dealing with this knowledge, those norms and behaviors within projects that are more or less explicit in social transformation. These projects can take on characteristics and forms that are absolutely dissimilar, ranging from small activities to form groups in small communities to the vast mobilizations against international organisms.

As an educational process it deals with content and method. The contents refer to social struggle analysis and strategies. The methodology of popular education, in a specific manner, has dealt with active and participatory modalities, where the action of the entire group, educators and educatees, occurs horizontally and democratically, without reproducing forms of domination and individualism. It is also within its perspective, as educational work, that social groups gain autonomy for learning as a methodology to promote the independence of social players.
                    From "The World Social Forum As A Place of Learning" by Sergio Haddad. Convergence, Volume XXXVI, Numbers 2-3, 2003, P. 57

You'll never plow a field by turning it over in your mind. Irish proverb £¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£¯£

This newsletter is produced by the Popular Education Resource Collection Circle. Betsy Barnum and Larry Olds worked on this issue. You can contribute to future issues by sending suggestions, notices of materials and short reviews to Help improve the newsletter. Subscribe by sending your email address to