Learning Process and Transmission of Folk Wisdom in Pottery Making in Nonthaburi, Thailand

By Pusadee Kutintara.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This research is a study of the learning process and transmission of folk wisdom in pottery making in Nonthaburi, Thailand. The study is a part of the research project: “Education in Nonthaburi: Learning Process of Career Local Wisdom in Informal Education.” This paper will cover only the learning process and transmission of pottery making. The purposes of the study were threefold: (1) to find out how folk wisdom in pottery making of Mon culture has been learned; (2) to find out how the pottery makers transmitted their wisdom in pottery making to learners, and (3) to identify guidelines for the preservation as well as impartation of this wisdom. The informants of the study consisted of 14 pottery makers (three of these are women) who produced distinctive style of pottery originated in Mon culture. They resided in Ko Kret Island (in Chao Phya River) as well as along the river banks in Nonthaburi Province. Research data were collected by in-depth interviews and observations at workplace and analyzed by content analysis. The findings of the study showed that most potters had learned their art since their childhood from parents, family members, or their bosses through apprenticeship. The majority of employed learning methods were observations, remembering, hands-on practice with advice and feedbacks from the trainers, imitation from remembrance, and trial and errors. Some pottery makers also exchanged knowledge with one another. All informants acquired their knowledge without note-taking or learning materials. As for imparting the wisdom to others, pottery makers transmitted their knowledge by direct teaching to various groups of learners and using their workplace as the learning resource. Besides, they had methods of imparting knowledge with more detailed steps than the methods they had experienced while acquiring their knowledge. In order to preserve this style of pottery making, guidelines were identified so that outstanding potters be recognized and given more opportunities to disseminate their knowledge and wisdom in various ways. Most of all, young people should be encouraged to learn and appreciate this invaluable wisdom as well as retain the skills of their forefathers.

Keywords: Learning Process, Folk Wisdom, Pottery Making

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 14, Issue 8, pp.107-112. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 629.848KB).

Asso. Prof. Pusadee Kutintara

Associate Professor, School of Educational Studies, Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University, Nonthaburi, Thailand

Pusadee Kutintara is Associate Professor of Elementary Education at Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University (STOU), Nonthaburi, Thailand where she teaches courses in elementary education and curriculum and instruction. She received B.A. and M.A. degrees in Elementary Education from University of Northern Colorado, U.S.A. After graduation, she taught in an elementary school in Bangkok. Later she worked as an education officer and researcher at the Ministry of Education. She started teaching at STOU in 1981. Besides teaching, she has conducted researches, published articles in journals and trained in-service preschool and elementary school teachers. Her special interest is in conservation of culture and environment.

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