"Building a Teaching Community: A Dialogue" (2)
Friday, January 08, 2021
I suggested in a prior post that we could compare liberatory pedagogy to theatre. The comparison becomes more clear in this chapter.
Professors can cross the boundaries that divide them from their students with dialogue. Dialogue drives theatre.
Professors don't want to makes themselves vulnerable to their students. And vice versa. It's called stage fright.
Students note the professor's body as she walks around the classroom. Doing so, professors show they’re not omnipotent and all-knowing. This movement erases traditional power structures in the classroom. Theatre calls this blocking. It calls the embodiment of posture, tone, and word choice performance.
One way to challenge the un-interestingness of a subject is to forego a lesson plan’s set agenda. Read the mood of the class, and ask, What I do with it. Reading the mood of a class; I can’t imagine a better example of improvisation.
An actor is in the present. So is an engaged teacher. An actor knows that no one audience will never be the same. So does an engaged teacher. Both recognize that their audience is dynamic. Fluid. And always changing. A fine description of a professor: one who engages fully, deeply, with the act of teaching.
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