Last night I attended an Open House of sorts at my son’s school. It was called Kino 101 Night (where Kino is the school’s name and you should be familiar with the rest of the title’s meaning). It was an opportunity for parents to experience what it’s like to spend a day at school. My son’s school follows a progressive education model (yay Alfie Kohn!) – so it’s very atypical of a traditional school day.
One of the activities available was learning to throw a pot in humanities class. Yes, humanities not art class. Why? I believe the teacher has incorporated this into his class as he spent many years traveling abroad to learn different techniques in various countries. I think it is a great way to illustrate the philosophy that ‘subjects’ are not roped off into boxes, independent of anything else- but flow and overlap all over the place. Regarding a traditional model, Alfie Kohn says it best…
“In a word, learning is decontextualized. We break ideas down into tiny pieces that bear no relation to the whole. We give students a brick of information, followed by another brick, followed by another brick, until they are graduated, at which point we assume they have a house. What they have is a pile of bricks, and they don’t have it for long.”
― Alfie Kohn, Punished by Rewards: The Trouble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A’S, Praise and Other Bribes
But really – that’s a side note for this post.
After Ryan had demonstrated the ‘throwing of a pot’ technique – and made an amazing piece of art, he offered the wheel up for anyone to ‘have a go’. Of course my arm shot straight up in the AIR.
I’m a first goer. I always have been. We have to give an oral presentation? Ok – I’ll go first. We have to have all our teeth extracted? Ok, I’ll go first. I cannot abide waiting. If I love it or hate it; I have to do it and get it done. Procrastination makes me wacky.
I married a ‘go laster’ – I don’t know how THAT happened. At least we aren’t jockeying for position, right?
So – what are you? Do you want to go first and be done? Do you like to wait until a few have gone before you? Are you more of a middle person? Or do you like to be the absolute LAST person up there? And do you know why?