Citizen Explorer Program

The Citizen Explorer(CE) program is structured to allow participants to be recognized for their personal informal learning efforts. The goal of the Citizen Explorer (CE) program is to celebrate the educational pursuits that are too often overlooked for adults and to foster the citizen explorer in children and youth.

Tyro (Apprentice)

The Tyro program is a year round, family centered, program that taps into the natural curiosity of children ages 6-12 to gain skills to nurture the next generation of citizen explorer. The Tyro program is designed to encourage informal learning in parents through their involvement with their children. Each Tryo Guild is made up of four or five families with children of similar age who are interested in supporting informal learning. These groups may meet weekly or monthly depending on the age and needs of the group. Each family is responsible for planning an informal learning experience for the group to do together.

Tyro Guilds are operated by engaged parents and passionate community volunteers. Each Guild is led by a triumvirate, an executive leadership team comprised of, at minimum, Guild Master(president), Journalist (Secretary), and Banker(Treasurer). These positions must be held by an adult 18 years of age or older. The triumvirate coordinates monthly activities for their Tyro Guild.

Upon completion of the Tyro program participants are awarded Key of Knowledge. With this the Tyro gains access to the Cerdo program and moves up.

Early Learning Loops for the Tryo Guild are established in advance to assist parents in the planning and implementation of programming. Tryo’s begin to self-define learning loops in preparation for their Key of Knowledge.

Cerdo (Journeyman)

The Cerdo Guild is a year round youth program for ages 11-17 built around three C’s of workforce development: Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity while supporting the next generation of citizen explorer through peer group leadership and shared decision making under the mentorship an adult triumvirate. The Cerdo Guild typically welcomes two or three graduating Tyro guilds into its fold each year. The triumvirate leadership expands to include older Cerdo youth in roles such as Junior Guild Master, Archivist, and Loop Manager.

Cerdo groups are planned and operated by Cerdo Citizen Explorers under the close guidance of the adult triumvirate.  The goal is to provide youth with leadership level experiences in planning and implementation of programming.

 Usta (Master)

 The Usta Guild is a year round self directed program for youth and adults ages 15 and older. Usta Guilds are self-governed and led. Usta Guilds are built around three C’s of workforce development: Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity while supporting the citizen explorer in everyone.

Usta Guild members may operate independently or in groups depending on the unique personality of the Citizen Explorer. Usta Guild members are often fulfilling leadership learning loops through triumvirate participation in Tyro and Cerdo Guilds.

Polymath (Renaissance man)

The highest level the Citizen Explorer program is the Polymath (Renaissance Man). To become a Polymath a Citizen Explorer must complete a project that demonstrates leadership and skills sets in three more content areas. The Polymath is required to document the experience and do a multimedia presentation on the project in a public setting.

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love (1973)

Citizen Explorer Learning Loops

  1. Plan
    1. What do you want to learn about? What do I want to learn how to do?
    2. Is it something you want to learn on your own or in a group?
    3. Define 10 experiences, products or tasks that will help you explore your topic.
    4. Have your criteria approved by the Guild Master.
  2. Do
    1. Identify a professional or polymath to act as mentor during your exploration.
    2. Choose 7 of the experiences, products, or tasks that you identified in your planning phase.
    3. Use multimedia tools to document your exploration.
  3. Review
    1. Create a 10 minute multimedia presentation about your exploration process.
    2. Present your exploration to a group of 3 or more people.
    3. Have a member of the Guild Master sign off on the completed exploration.
    4. Choose a symbol or charm to represent the completion of your learning loop. We recommend that your symbol or charm choice be consistent across all your explorations.



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