Friday, October 07, 2005

Juggling Unknowns

I love teaching, obviously. The seminar format is the best- you walk onto the mat or into the room and you have to size up the audience. Probably you could teach to a cookie cutter lesson plan, but that's not teaching for the student, that's ego stroking for yourself. In any group you should make one connection with everyone and find at least one thing you can help them with.

This can make it pretty chaotic. Most of my classes start with asking, "What do you need to work on today?" Most students don't have an answer. I don't believe that they are blind to their own needs, it's more that they don't grasp that they have permission to act and to guide their own training. For a few, for one in particular, I think she withholds suggestions because she wants to see the unknown territory... that's good too.

In a little over two weeks I'll be team teaching with relative strangers. One I feel I know pretty well as a martial artist and teacher. One I know a little bit as a person, but have never actually seen him on the mat. The third is a mystery.

It's fun, for me, to try to coordinate an ambitious plan by e-mail. I'd be perfectly happy winging it- "What do you want to learn today?" Almost as happy with a detailed lesson plan. Comfortable.

I don't know where the other instructors are comfortable. I'm as big an unknown to them as they are to me.

We'll see how it goes. It will be a blast, one way or the other.

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