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praxis snapshots

peacock's picture

praxis snapshots:

1. We are sitting in a circle discussing last week's writing assignment. The assignment is to write about what we wished was taught in schools that maybe isn't. People are sharing their thoughts - a lot of them revolve around "surviving" in the world, practical knowledge, a real and comprehensive sex ed (the idea of a "Rape 101" class comes up) - esentially, things that may have prevented them from being in the current position they are in. While a lot of people agree with each other, one person makes a comment that sparks a heated debate, saying that she doesn't necessarily relate to all the stories being shared (stories of leaving behind families and falling into addiction). Someone comes back with a comment along the lines of "well, we're all here for a reason." This is the first time I've heard someone explicity reference the setting we are in. They discuss how learning from each other's experiences is helpful and useful, and how maybe hearing someone's story can prevent another person from going through the same thing.

2. Another week's writing assignment - creating a dialogue between you and a person who has had an important impact/influence on your life. We are performing them for the group. One participant performs a dialogue she wrote between her and her grandmother, who helped raise her. The scene is her and her grandmother (played by another participant) in the hospital, with her grandmother in a hospital bed. The conversation is essentially about thanking her grandmother for all that she'd done, and expressing her love for her grandmother. (Her grandmother is not actually dying in real life). It is an extremely moving experience, probably for everyone.

3. We are discussing "Twelve Tribes of Hattie" and everyone is very involved. We are talking about "reverberations" and how one event in the beginning of the book ripples through the rest of it. People are getting passionate and using quotes from the novel to back up their points; we are discussing the meanings of quotes out loud, and everyone is bringing in a different perspective. I feel like I am in a college classroom, but more lively and genuine.


jccohen's picture

"like in a college classroom but more lively and genuine"


Although of course I'm in the same setting, it's great to hear your perspective on what stands out there.  I'm especially struck by the comment that you feel "like I am in a college classroom, but more lively and genuine."  Why do you think the conversation in this setting might - at least sometimes - feel 'more lively and genuine' - what is this about?  And are there ways that we might learn from this something about how to make more of the college classroom? 

Also, do you think we've been referencing the setting more often recently, and if not, why might this be?  Is it something we should work to raise more often, and to what ends?