In search of transformative moments: Blending community building pursuits into lifelong learning experiences

Mikulas Pstross, Craig A. Talmage, C. Bjørn Peterson, Richard C. Knopf


This article presents an exploration of the relationship between community building and lifelong learning. Using a reflective style, the authors propose that the fusion of community building principles with lifelong learning practice can positively transform educational practice. Seven positive pursuits are highlighted regarding their potential to assist the implementation of community building into lifelong learning programs: (1) asset-based thinking; (2) critical reflection; (3) systems thinking; (4) cognitive vibrancy, (5) inclusiveness; (6) creative expression; and, (7) purpose in life. These pursuits draw upon the power of the community development field to bring about more positive transformative moments for individuals and communities participating in lifelong learning programs. The metaphor of bread making is used to illustrate how such transformative moments occur and why they are meaningful to individuals pursuing lifelong learning.


lifelong learning, community building, older adults, transformative learning, positive pursuits

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