Its parent teacher night and I was just scaring the bejeebus out of a bunch of folks by telling that what I expect from their children this year is that they come to my class and fail.

Ok, then I explain that no, I don't expect (or want) them to fail my class. What I want is that they take risks and really put themselves out there. My photography students know that a National Geographic Nat Geo photographer will take 60,000+ photographs in one week in order to get the 4 or 5 good ones that end up in the magazine. I'm more interested in what they discover by botching something than what they give me that they think I'm looking for.

Its funny that on my little break period here, I just come across this video. Where were you 15 minutes ago, little clip? Ah well, at least it will still be here for the students tomorrow.


  1. frank said...
    that's a great story, post and video!
    will pass it along to my school's staff.
    btw, out of curiosity, how many art lessons a week do your students in MS/HS have?
    dsgran said...
    Thanks Frank- we have block scheduling at the HS, so I see my students either 2-3 times a week for 90 minutes at a time.

    Not sure about the MS- i want to say that they have it once a week for 2/3 of the year. I'll get back to you on that. It just changed we've gone from one MS art teacher to 2 this year.
    craigr said...
    Great lesson for students (and parents). . . and great video find. Have already downloaded for use in my classes. I'm thinking we need a place to celebrate student "risks" and "failures" . . .where they try something but it just doesn't work out.
    dsgran said...
    Absolutely. Glad that you and Frank both found it useful. I think its funny how much we are all told 'you learn from your mistakes' - often enough that we take it for granted perhaps- but we never celebrate mistake making as part of the learning process in school.
    craigr said...
    Speaking of "fail," saw this posting on Mashable today titled "FAIL OVERLOAD."
    craigr said...
    Came back to share this Art21 video of Arturo Herrera talking about failure. Also noticed the Mashable article link in my last comment didn't work. Here's one that will (I hope).
    dsgran said...
    Those are great, Craig.

    It makes me wonder how I could create a lesson where the objective is to fail in such great ways... ;)

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