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  •  Passion in pedagogy and with pupils (1+ / 0-)
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    Dearest TeacherKen . . .

    Perhaps, it is the use of the first snippet you offered that leads me to what might be thought too open and vulnerable for some.  Nonetheless, as I finally realized, more than a decade ago, in my read of Emotional Intelligence the vulnerable are the strong.  Thus, I share.

    Parker Palmer speaks of love and passion, for his craft, the subjects he teaches, and the students he cares for and about.  He discusses the relationship between the art and the science of pedagogy, as well as the art and science that exists in any intimate relationship.

    good teaching cannot be reduced to technique:  good teaching comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher.

    I believe the way we interact with another human being, be it professionally, personally, or in a pupil Professor relationship can be real or the opposite, all technique.

    I am reminded of my own rite of passage.  I thought to purposely choose my corporeal journey with someone who was experienced.  However, the thought of a “relationship” per se was of no interest to me.  I did not expect to meet anyone and never sought the company of a “companion.”  I was found.

    The fascination for me is, the particular fellow who came my way craved an authentic connection.  A commitment was what he desired.  He understood that superficial silliness did not appeal to me.  Thus, for hours we read and reviewed books together.  

    Author Herman Hesse spoke to each of us.  We perused each of the Writer’s works.  Our conversations were endless.  Ultimately, we did the “act.” Oddly enough, as practiced this person was, when intertwined physically, he was all technique.  While I am never romantic and love for me is lyrical, when met with a deft doer of the deed, I felt so detached, that the moments felt like hours.  The exercise was rote.

    No matter how technical my subject may be, the things I teach are things I care about - and what I care about helps define my selfhood . . .To reduce our vulnerability, we disconnect from students, from subjects, even from our selves.  We build a wall between inner truth and outer performance, and we play-act the teacher's part . . . .  We distance ourselves from students and subject to minimize the danger - forgetting that distance makes life more dangerous still by isolating the self.

    Apparently, Eric had been seriously hurt in an earlier relationship.  He taught himself to disconnect in hopes of being less vulnerable.  He came to me, eager for an emotional, fulfilling, heartfelt union.  Yet, he also sought to establish distance.  Thus, through isolation Eric placed himself in greater danger.  His heart, had we continued in that manner would be hurt again.  Fortunately, the study we pursued together before the “act” allowed us to feel safe.  Openly, honestly, each vulnerable with the other, we discussed why a technically adept “association” would not work.  While I wanted no romance, fiction is not my friend, if we were to be friends we each needed to be real!

    I hope you can relate to the analogy, or at least understand it.  Smiles.


    It is only the giving that makes us what [who] we are. - Ian Anderson.
    Betsy L. Angert BeThink

    by Bcgntn on Sat Nov 13, 2010 at 04:08:41 PM PST

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