Trade School Berlin: an experimental learning project

Research & Education
Mittwoch, 7. Mai 2014 - 10:30 bis 11:00
stage C


Trade School Berlin is a non-monetary and self-organized alternative school for exchange and mutual aid. Teachers propose classes and ask for barter items from students. For example, if you teach a class about making butter, you might ask students to bring heavy cream, jars, bread, music tips, clothes, vegetables, or help with something like finding an apartment. We believe that given a safe space, both virtual and material, we all have something valuable to offer.


Trade School originally began in New York between a group of friends in 2010. It has since grown to reach over a dozen countries where local organizers use their open source software to begin schools autonomously in their area. We began TS Berlin last year and are currently in our second season. So far we've had a Pizza Making course, Regenerative Design & Open Source Hardware, Dance basics, and a class called How to completely change your life forever.

Self-organized spaces that don't rely on monetary support are different beasts from institutional systems of learning, and this beast in particular has presented its organizers with a never-ending stream of challenges that continues to inspire and excite us. We are especially driven by a strong belief in safe spaces that subvert the increasingly capitalistic means of receiving an education and sharing knowledge.


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