December 10, 2005

The undivided self

In a comment to this post, Roger provided a link to the Center for Courage and Renewal. I've only glanced at it, but it seems interesting, and relevant to me now: the identity and integrity of the teacher...invites educators to reclaim their own wholeness and vocational clarity...the shape of an integral life.

I've begun to realize that for some reason, I've learned over the past 20 years to divorce a lot of myself from my teaching . And I don't want to do that any more. This habit not only cuts me off from many of my own inner resources, but it also makes me do the same to my students, and as they have been accustomed to doing the same (perhaps by the same forces that developed the habit in me), we end up with a lot of unreal people in the classroom.

It has recently struck me as odd that, first a sterile environment called "the classroom" is created, one which looks like all the others, has almost no distinguishing characteristics, and has no character whatsoever; then, because it is sterile, a lot of money needs to be spent to try and bring resources into it - so each classroom has a dvd, video, CD and cassette player (every year they add a new one as technology develops); textbooks need to be bought by teachers and students, then videos/DVDs, etc need to be brought in.

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