Saint-Didier primary school

The knowledge market

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Recognise different smells



Draw a cat


On seeing the stalls, sellers and customers, most people think of a market and, indeed, they are right. However, customers at this particular market do not buy fruits or vegetables, but knowledge, for example, 'Play a minor key' or 'Multiply'.

The sellers are the pupils, former pupils, parents and teachers. Generally, the customers are the pupils, though sometimes adults will become involved when there is a stall that interests them.

In the case of a 'major market', organised with another school, the market lasts for a whole afternoon, and actually consists of two markets, with pupils selling in the first then buying in the second, or vice versa.

Each pupil therefore performs two different roles, one after the other: in one, they learn from someone; in the other, they are teaching someone. Therein lies the primary advantage of the knowledge market: pupils have the opportunity to try out a role that is rare in many schools, thereby transforming their social status.

The second advantage is that the school will benefit from types of knowledge that are not normally recognised in schools. Every child and every adult has personal talents that they can make available to others, for example, 'Count to 10 in Greek', 'Juggle', 'Recognise different smells'.

The third advantage is that knowledge is actually acquired during these markets, including 'academic' knowledge, i.e. knowledge listed in official programmes.

All successful acquisitions made during the knowledge markets are recorded. Every child has a file containing a list of all the stalls and their intended level (cycle 1, cycle 2, cycle 3, combination of cycles…). Each stall offers a taster session, training and a test. The result of this test is recorded on the pupil's file.

After the market, newly obtained 'certificates' may be added to existing ones; in this way pupils build up their 'coat of arms'.

Remi Casteres

How many cubes?


Count to 10 in Greek






Write a sentence in Russian


This page has been translated from French by Andreas Theodorou.




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Last Update :08/18/04