|The Positive Principle Show|
Max Ryan Enterprises 2017 All Right Reserved -
|The Positive Principle Show|
Teaching and Learning... Learning and Learning
They often say, and I have proven this to myself more than once, that “...should you really want to learn – go teach someone, what you think you know. Then you'll learn, what you thought you knew.”
This was proven as few years ago, when, trying hard not to lapse into the mode of arrogant, recently graduated undergrad, I applied to tutor art at a local non-profit art place. Receiving zero support and almost less pay, I persisted in creating a class: Pastels for Impressionists.
The class parameters were stated clearly. 'Must have Drawing Fundamentals, must have a command of pastels, hard and soft and be familiar with working on Wallis or Sennelier special pastel paper'. Of course, all this and the pastels cost the student. I know. Stated clearly at the top of the enrollment form.
In class, middle Americans, architect and friend, male, two women, no Fundamentals, - “No, and I don't intend to take that class (Fundamentals) either. Can't (won't?) pay for them”.
And so the battle raged, do I teach... do I learn? 'Art is a symptom of the process of seeing.'
“Pardon me, what's a form? Why do I need lines of, of... what? Perspective? You're weird. I just want to sketch... but I love your accent. I don't want to create a tree. See that monument in the park, that's what...”
“You'll have to deal with foreshortening... have you studied Rembrandt?”
“Forewhat..., who? Why does it look so weird, it won't come towards me.”
“Did you read that you needed Drawing Fundamentals before enrolling in this class.”
“My friend said she knew all that.”
“And do you?”
“Well, she said she would teach me, show me. She's good at holding my hand, that it would be OK for me to enroll.”
“Normally, that is the decision made by the instructor. She holds your hand while you sketch? By the way, where is your friend now?”
“Ooh, she can't come anymore. Her boyfriend doesn't....”
Sigh... Deep breath time.
“Yes... you'd like to talk to me about how I teach my class? Yes, I can come into the office to-morrow.”
“Yes... you're correct. I did not present a syllabus to the class, it's printed in the enrollment form. The student is required to read that and the fact that they need Fundamentals before enrolling.”
“Well... we can't let a dissatisfied student bad mouth our hard work. They have asked that their money be refunded....”
“But they've taken the whole class...! We're two weeks away from semester end.”
“Well, that's why we can't pay you for the entire semester....”
“Can't pay...? You mean, I can teach, and they can learn, then I can learn.”
I also learnt that teaching art students, was not tutoring or leading a team of technical writers. Why? Left hemisphere vs. Right hemisphere. What did I learn? Fine tune the radar, don't get taken advantage of, or try not to, and... aw, rats, it'll happen again. I give up. 'Tis life not a learning experience?
Learning... Teaching, Teaching... Learning.