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The Goodenough Community
The Goodenough Community is a long-term experiment in community formation and
development sponsored by the American Association for the Furtherance of Community.

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The Village School for Human Development

"The theories presented in graduate school didn't fit my experience; they were only a part of the process of healing. VSHD helped me sort it all out and integrate who I am with what I learned in graduate school."  

-MA. in Psychology

The Village School Curriculum

There are no offerings from the Village School for Human Development at this time. Most community members have attended the Village School, and practice what they learned about human development daily, in their lives. Below, see what the curriculm encompassed. If you desire to learn the curriculum of the Village School, contact Colette Hoff.



The Threefold Curriculum

Through its 25 years of service, the Village School has developed a threefold curriculum design that participants find helpful.

1.   Students begin with a study of self, their own characteristics, and developmental issues.

2.   Next, relationship is explored, learning the skills required to relate with others most effectively.

3.   Finally, the student is prepared to study "social dynamics" while working collaboratively in small groups and organized settingsbecoming effective members of community.

Each school year follows this model. Fall term focuses on your human development; winter term focuses on helping you use relationship to support your growth; spring term focuses on helping you participate effectively in organizations.

Although students can benefit from a single term, they are encouraged to commit to a full year.

If you have additional questions, call (206)755-8404 or email hoff@goodenough.org.

You will study your own life as friend. The skill of self observation will be taught and practiced. You will learn the art of identifying what is happening inside you intellectually, physically, and emotionally as it happens. You will examine characteristics you think of as friendly. You will be able to compare these to how other people see you. You will work in small groups.

You will learn the core skills used by friends:

  • Disagreeing agreeably
  • Resolving conflict
  • Making decisions
  • Joining through celebration
    Sharing intimately,
  • Listening compassionately
  • Avoiding judgment
  • Encouraging another’s self esteem

Key Leaders
Dr. John Lawrence Hoff
provided a conceptual overview and facilitated a core educational process. He developed his diverse interests and skills through study of many cultures, disciplines, and spiritual traditions. Dr. Hoff's professional interest in adult education was reflected in his resumé: Regional Training Director for the National Training Laboratories (NTL Institute); faculty positions in two universities and two seminaries, and more than 200 major workshops for a variety of governmental, private, and church agencies. His ability to inspire interest in relationships and his  practical and common-sense spirituality had  a fundamental influence on the Goodenough Community System. He taught in the Village School for Human Development for all of its 25 years.

Colette Hoff, M.Ed., is Director of the Village School and provides administrative leadership. Valuing the transformation in her own life, she monitors individual and group processes and offers leadership training to interested students. She has served in both the public and private sectors as a researcher and counselor. For the past 30 years, she has been a pastoral educator for families, couples, and individuals.

The Village School, formerly known as the Private School for Human Development, began in 1986 and ran a certificate program through 1999, which prepared scores of people for a more relational and effective life. The school focus is on facilitating human development, which includes training and leadership. In the last decade the Village School has sponsored learning projects on topics such as finance and sexuality and now this project on sustaining friendship in community life.

“A true friend shares freely, advises justly, assists readily, adventures boldly, listens patiently, and continues being a friend unchangeably” said William Penn.  The word friend is an old one and found before the current era in Greek and in languages of the Far East. Friend was at first a verb and referred to the action of loving kindness or helpfulness. In other words befriending was the verb that slowly became a noun “friend or friendship.” In most languages, to befriend is to love and to care for.   Join us as we continue to explore friendship through Living Harmoniously as Friends, building friendly relationships and a balanced life.

Email: hoff@goodenough.org






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