The Future of Education

Edition 13

Accepted Abstracts

Critical Pedagogy and the Transformative Power of Creative Writing: Teaching & Learning with the Urban Poor

Elizabeth Morales-Nuncio, Malayan Colleges Laguna (Philippines)


Critical Pedagogy and the Transformative Power of Creative Writing: Teaching & Learning with the Urban Poor


The paper aims to: (1) explain how Freireian critical pedagogy can be used to defamiliarize and revolutionize a dialogue between the organic intellectuals (in NGOs) and co-intellectuals (urban poor children) through teaching-learning via creative writing workshops with the urban poor; (2) show the process of rethinking culture-sharing and culture-learning through a series of collaborative poetry workshops as a reconstructive method in achieving pedagogic goals; and lastly (3) discuss the findings and final writings of urban poor children manifesting vivid consciousness and transformative actions towards self-realization and development away from conditions of poverty.

            This study covers the results of the researcher’s ethnographic fieldwork and immersion conducted in the relocation site of depressed families in Towerville, San Jose del Monte, Bulacan. The researcher is a member of bukalsining, a cultural and non-government organization, that handles literary and street-theater workshops for urban poor children.

            The first phase of the study is called pedagogic enculturation. This could be done by learning the situation, conditions and history of the community, the bukalsining and its respective members. The researcher first conducted a case study of the community in Towerville and of bukalsining. Series of structured and unstructured interviews and focus group discussions were held among community and NGO leaders and the youth to situate the study.

            The second phase is called pedagogic acculturation. The researcher used participant-observation during the poetry workshop where the researcher became lecturer/facilitator/student during the sessions. It is in this stage when the researcher observed and analyzed the cultural-educational mechanism of dialogue (teaching & learning) between two different groups in raising their social consciousness through writing and towards liberation from the conditions of poverty. 

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