Last night I attended an amazing live concert at Mercdez Benz arena in Shanghai with my wife, Neila Steele, and my two boys, Eli and Tai. The incredibly talented musician, Ed Sheeran, performed solo for two straight hours, just him and his guitar before a sold out audience of 18,000 people.
Although I knew who Ed Sheeran was and was familiar with most of his music, I had a totally different appreciation for him and his art after seeing him perform live. I couldn’t help thinking about the fact that just as musicians perform their art, educators are artists in their own way as well.
I have always believed that as educators we all have our own very unique ways to approach the art of teaching. We are all distinctly different, no two teachers alike, and sometimes this reality if often overlooked. It is imperative that we always allow our own unique artistic flair of teaching come alive in our practice, but to root this practice in the most current evidence-based research.
Reflection has played a pivotal role in helping me to understand this fact and to honor who I am and what I bring to the profession in my own way, but this in itself isn’t enough for me to have the impact that I desire on my students. I have had several discussions over the past few months with a friend of mine, Dean Dudley, a senior lecturer from Macquarie University about my teaching practice and how to better understand certain approaches that I use in my classes.
Just as musicians all perform their music in unique ways, so too should teachers deliver their lessons in their own unique ways. That's what makes teaching such a great profession.
Teaching is an art, so embrace your art and what makes you distinctly different. Identify what it is that makes you different and let these differences flourish within your teaching practice. Be sure though to know thy impact and consider important and relevant research while on this journey. Have a great week of teaching folks.