Interpretation of guidance in the Baha' writings to formulate a method of using Bahá'í deepening and training materials that utilize research-based learning, teaching, and curriculum theory, both deductive and inductive, beyond institute-style courses.
About: This paper was presented by this author at an educational conference in Colombia in 1997, revised in 1999, and published with the other presentations by FUNDAEC in 2000 (published as El proyecto educacional Bahá'í). It describes an interpretation of the guidance available in the Bahá’í writings on the development of a Bahá’í educational system. The method set forth is both deductive and inductive. (This is in contrast to the more inductive and, supposedly, theory-free approach proposed by Dr. Farzam Arbab in Learning About Growth [1991; see page 54, par. 2]). The method proposed by this author calls for the ongoing, deductive utilization of current, leading-edge theology (especially Bahá’í hermeneutics), philosophies, research-based theories, and practices that are in harmony with the Bahá’í writings [For example, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá recommended to Bahá’í educationists of his day the work of María Montessori] and their inductive improvement via the outcomes of research on praxis in Bahá’í schools throughout the world with the support of research universities. [-K.B., 2021]
About the author: Wm. Keith Bookwalter holds a Ph.D. in human development with specializations in cognitive development and education. During his 46 years working at international, private, bilingual schools in Honduras and Colombia and in private and public schools in the U.S., he worked in various positions in administration, staff development, curriculum development, and teaching. He was selected as “one of the foremost achievers” in the field of education by the Marquis Who’s Who Publication Board. His biography appears in Who’s Who in America and in Who’s Who in the World. He is the author of The Development of Logical Thinking in Children, The Wholistic Educational System (in the offing) and various professional articles and book chapters on education. He is the co-founder and president of the Foundation for Multidimensional Education with headquarters in Cartagena, Colombia. Dr. Bookwalter has been a Bahá’í since 1971 and has served the Bahá’í Faith as an international pioneer for 9 years in Honduras and 30 years in Colombia which included 19 years of combined service on the national spiritual assemblies of these countries. He has had extensive experience in Bahá’í radio, national treasury, Huqúqu’lláh representation, proclamation, mass teaching, study circles, and children’s classes. He is the proud father of four children and grandfather of four girls. His current interests are research, writing, and sharing his work with others. He can be contacted at "kbookwalter [at] gmail.com."