Ojo de agua is an educational environment, a structural innovation in education since 1999. Formally, it is not a school, but an Ecological Park of Educational Leisure. We have developed this environment based on ethics, attitude and permaculture principles. Aspiring to 100% in sustenaibility and 0% in waste.
In this environment, all people, children and young people are there of their own free will; all people can use their time as they wish, regardless of their age; all activities are freely chosen; there is no default curriculum; there are no courses or notes; mothers and fathers are welcome; there are no mandatory classes, except those that are demanded.
Our mission in Ojo de agua is to create a rich and diverse environment in material resources with human beings that contribute to meet the authentic development needs of children and young people in an atmosphere of respect. We seek to create the conditions in which all people can learn to connect what they feel inside with their external activity. When this happens, people feel connected to life. When we learn to live this way, we are able to offer others the best of ourselves.
In Ojo de agua each person has the opportunity to learn to decide what to do each day. The participants have a wide range of activities that are self-organized at the beginning of each season with the participation of the initiatives of children and young people. The degree of freedom of a person is directly proportional to their degree of responsibility. It is the responsibility of each person to define their own learning process. All interests, academic or not, are equally important. Although, these structured activities reach a figure of 40-50 a week in recent years, the fundamental basis of the Ojo de agua mission is relationships with other human beings and with the ecosystem.
We work on demand. When a person wants to learn or practice something and needs help, we look for who can help among the participants and the team; if we need it, we also seek support in the community of mothers and fathers who, in this way, get involved and participate in the daily life of the environment and be a living part of it. Ultimately, we look for specialized people in our environment.
Parents and the team work together in the process of satisfying the interests of children and young people. This can happen inside or outside the environment. We see Ojo de agua as "a" place to learn, but not "the" place to learn.
Since we consider that the family is the most important ecosystem for the balanced development of the human being at all levels (physical, emotional, intellectual, social and spiritual), we consider that it is key to build a relationship of deep trust and communication between families and the team through respectful communication that does not judge.
We have a weekly assembly. Participants and team have voice and vote in the assembly, which is a tool to learn to live together. Attendance at the assembly is voluntary, except if someone has a need for everyone to participate in the matter they wish to address.
We are part of Ecoversities, a global alliance for reimaginig the eduction with our initiative for adults Ojo de Sol (www.ojodesol.net)