In the words of Yogi Bhajan, “If you want to master something, teach it”
The idea of “if you want to learn something, teach it” resonates with me in teaching art to children, because teaching is part of my own training as an artist. The ongoing process of learning is pivotal in my work. I prepare lesson plans, set up supplies, offer ideas, demonstrate techniques, ask questions, and work at listening to my students. I am grateful for their enthusiasm, honesty and the learning that takes place when we work through a challenge. On some days I leave
class wondering what I need to change and at other times a solution presents itself and I am amazed when it works. Learning happens easily when we are having fun. Letting go of my agenda and tuning into my students’ needs and ideas have unfolded as some of my most rewarding class times. Balancing what I give and receive from the group creates a flow like a dance. I enjoy observing my students focus on a process, marvel at what they can do, build camaraderie, and learn from each other. I have asked them to describe what they like about art class? One student said “Creating art makes you feel good.” This is true in creating something. It may move you into a different state of being and the change is initiated by you, the creator. YOU did it!
The next few photographs are examples of students ideas unfolding in a way that is an offshoot of the lesson plan and meaningful to them.