Great Teachers

February 28, 2018

 

From Slate:

 

[T]here are two things, above all, that students want from their professors. Not, as people commonly believe, to entertain them in class and hand out easy A’s. That’s what they retreat to, once they see that nothing better is on offer. What they really want is that their teachers challenge them and that they care about them. They don’t want fun and games; they want the real thing.

What they want, in other words, is mentorship… Learning is an emotional experience, and mentorship is rooted in the intimacy of intellectual exchange. Something important passes between you, something almost sacred…

[Great teachers] connect the material at hand, in a way that feels spacious and free, with anything to which it might be relevant. They connect it to experience, and so they shed light on experience—on your experience. Just as great art gives you the feeling of being about ‘life’—about all of it at once—so does great teaching. The boundaries come down, and somehow you are thinking about yourself and the world at the same time, thinking and feeling at the same time, and instead of seeing things as separate parts, you see them as a whole.

 

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©2017 BY A.K. SHAUKU.