ANNO 10/ N. 26 - Dicembre 2015 - Dropout e Neet: le nuove emergenze europee.







Relazioni educative: tra Comunicazione e Cura

Di Gaia Gioli

Vanna Boffo, Relazioni educative: tra Comunicazione e Cura, Milano, Apogeo, 2011

In 2007 Umberto Galimberti urged parents and teachers never to stop communication, good or bad, with children and students. Teachers and parents should always focus their attention, both emotional and intellectual, on their students or children because this could affect the latter and add to their natural tendency to interrupt the educational relationship. The teachers, and generally speaking all the professionals who promote and support the formation and the education of young people and adults, must have a strong educational sensitivity and specific skills to be able to relate to others in their work. This is what the European Commission stated when indicating the teachers’ skills without which one cannot achieve appropriate standards in the educational field. Among others, the relational competence and communication are certainly the most significant when dealing with education in general and are closely linked. Indeed, we can say that education poses its own foundations on relation and communication. There would be no education without an educational interpersonal and inter-subjective relationship. Educational relationship could not exist without a constructive communication that conveys the contents of the communication and the learning process. Communication in other words is the bridge that allows the transmission of the contents of the educational projects between one subject and another.

Already Dewey in 1916 emphasized that "not only social life is identical with the communication, but all communication (and hence every genuine social life) is educative. To be a recipient of a communication is to have an enlarged and changed experience. One shares in what another has thought and felt and in so far, meagerly or amply, has his own attitude modified.” An analysis of the educational relationship, the participation in family life and civic education, its transforming and emancipatory function offers answers or even better tools to face the new challenges that society today. This involves the identification of specific responsibilities of counsellors, educators, trainers, youth and adults, but also the definition of correlations and, above all, of the possible synergies between these two social groups: on the one hand teachers, educators, parents, professionals; on the other young people.

In this sense meeting the others, communicating with the others is communicating with oneself, educating oneself through the others and the contexts. The cure is an ethical and moral aspect that is deeply involved in the formation of citizens and of human being. Indeed it conditions life, it is guide and orientation of individuals and indicate the way to have positive relationships within family, working life, social life, it stimulates intergenerational dialogues and collaboration in every context, valorising differences and promoting collaboration and inclusiveness. Indeed human relationship and communication are inherent in every aspect of human life because their transmission consists not only in the foundation of education and training but all aspects of social life, and then of the construction of the networks which we individually belong to. This is why, as in any other field even in business, the mismatch of labour demand and supply can be identified in the different languages of communication for those seeking and offering jobs. Although the web and databases for job vacancies have greatly contributed to reduce the information asymmetries of the jobless, the unemployment rate of young graduates has not decreased and the national and European strategies implemented have not produced the expected results.

Given this socio-political scenario in which young people between 16 and 30 years can boast an average media literacy far superior to previous generations, the difficult match between supply and demand for labour can find a plausible explanation in the problems of misunderstanding, in the different languages of communication adopted by those who seek and those who supply work. Many are unable to understand how to read a job application, how to introduce themselves to a potential employer, to find incentives and opportunities for training and working. Moreover, also the inability of knowing how to read themselves and their professional aspirations may cause difficulties in approaching the labour market. Our lives can be perceived as a series of haphazard experiences, information, readings, "collected in bulk without an order". And it is precisely by careful analysis of these disparate and "in bulk" experiences that we can find the key to read the contexts in which we are immersed, understand how to act in the search of a job, what behaviour is deemed acceptable to superiors and to the peers, finally understand what it means to work in a team towards a common goal. How many young graduates know how to write their CVs and a cover letter effectively? How many of them manage to get a job interview? And how many will finally appear ready and aware of the company they are interacting with? A clear awareness of the world around us means knowing the others, society and ourselves with mindfulness.

It is in the concept of mindfulness that Vanna Boffo, starting from the wide-ranging pedagogical debate to which Cambi, Siegel and Stern have contributed, aims at finding the key to be able to live a full life, so as to have a profound effect on interpersonal communication and thus be aware of themselves and of their role. Mindfulness should characterize the baggage of soft skills of all citizens, but especially the guidance practitioners and adult educators. Through these competencies young people can change and modify themselves so as to obtain the desired job. Vanna Boffo highlights how the mindfulness-based education is essential for everyone and can be taught in all educational settings knowing that the educational process exceeds the school and expresses itself in situations of civil, social and working life in a dynamic way. Only in this way young people will gain the tools to have an autonomous, critical and conscious interpretation of the working world in which they live.

This volume is clearly addressed to teachers, educators, practitioners, but also young people and adults who should constantly critically rethink not only their role, but also their wishes, the strategies they intend to implement in the short and long term to improve their employment status and deal with a greater awareness and clarity of purpose of their working lives. The educational relationship then becomes an education towards thinking and acting with awareness and mindfulness in the current world of work: know how to read the contexts, to anticipate change, learn to interact with others in a timely manner even in a virtual one. Only in this way young people will affect the construction of their working career.





LLL - Focus on Lifelong Lifewide Learning
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