To mark the International Day of Forests on 21 March, the SFS organised a socialising event by the City Forest Tree House in the Celje City Forest featuring forest pedagogy activities for primary school goers and a hike. The Celje City Forest maintains one of the most venerable traditions among Slovenian city forests and is a model of good cooperation between the SFS and the City Municipality of Celje. The long-standing cooperation between the SIAE and the organiser (the representatives Jože Prah and Alojz Lipnik are the recipients of the SIAE Award) continues this year within the scope of action research of social and civic competences.
“True (lasting) knowledge is created during authentic experiences when we are open to that which is new and different. Play, personal experience and the search for commonalities through conversation are therefore elements of the sustainability of a community or society. Planned learning can limit the authenticity and permanency of acquired knowledge. People differ and – especially the adults – claim (either out loud or quietly) the freedom of our own thoughts and our own path in the world. Norms are, unfortunately, part of education and they often distract from the focus on the blossoming of the love of learning as such or are geared merely towards the acquired benefits. The benefits differ slightly from person to person. Children and adults do not enjoy formally acquired knowledge as much as we would like them to and therefore do not learn as much as we would like. It involves the effort of “climbing”, which we experienced in the Celje City Forest, by climbing the City Forest Tree House. The constructive freedom of an individual is also always possible within “the system”. Such freedom is assured by the study circles that mentors from the SFS have been conducting. Despite their unpredictability, small size and geographical dispersion, they are garnering an excellent response and generating tangible results. Advanced professions are returning to their roots, authenticity, spontaneity and the patient steering of complex needs that change over time. I would like to compliment the development of the Celje City Forest and the event marking the International Day of Forests and thank you for the event you have organised on this sunny morning. We will leave here richer and full of energy that we need in our daily routine.”
The event focused on learning so it was unsurprising that representatives of all educational institutions dealing with forests in one way or another participated. The SIAE has been working with study circles that have also been operating within the scope of the SFS since 1999.
Dr Nevenka Bogataj (email@example.com), SIAE