Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Play it Again Sam

Two teachers on contract discuss their pedagogical approaches.

Pedagogist: Why don’t you teach more classes?
Iconoclast: Can’t. I already have six a week. Can’t do eighteen a week like you.
Pedagogist: You’d make three times as much. All you got to do is walk in, open the text to the right place and tell them to get on with it. Piece of cake.
Iconoclast: Can’t do textbooks. Have to do something edgy and new each week. Something I’ve never taught before.
Pedagogist: Stressful!
Iconoclast: Stimulating. I get input from preparing, and I get output from teaching what I just learned. You teach a lot, make a lot of money. Yes, but where’s your input time?
Pedagogist: A day a week. I relax, I read.
Iconoclast: So my reading does double duty. I read it, I teach it. Improvized Jazz vs Play it Again Sam. Louis vs. Sam.


Comparing Sam to Louis Armstrong is a little misleading, yes. The misquote notwithstanding, did Sam really play the same songs every night the same way? And did Louis always play freestyle?  The pedagogist has a point; there is something to be said for having a script to depart from.


Anonymous said...

To teach with heart and experiences and not with one times preparation. To input, it's last few second, but need to "digest" and analysis. Understanding what students need without any restriction. After all, teaching area is widely, teaching them with different subjects, sometimes it might be good for changing subject, just like don't need to make any preparation, telling them the stories and reality.

Barry Natusch said...

Stories are indeed a key point of good teaching. The stories need to be collected (input) and rehearsed (output). No matter how many times you tell the story, strangely it always comes out slightly differently (oh look! A double adverb!