Sunday, March 13, 2011

Lessons from the students

I interviewed this week for the 2011 SES, now called Pre-College Summer Sessions.
I should hear with the next week or so whether or not I passed muster. I'm reasonably confident, but take nothing for granted.
In preparing for the interview, I reflected on the last 11 years, during which I've taught 11 sessions of one of the two programs, and all 6 of the others.
This is a great experience. I get to challenge myself to new possibilities through working with high school age students, as opposed to the college and returning adult students in my more standard teachign rotation.
At the end of every session, I hand out index cards and ask the students for recommendations. Books, movies, games, music, anything they think I might not have been exposed to that might be of value to me, or just fun. I won't provide links for these. I take them as an opportunity for research, and encourage you to do likewise.
I'm always amazed at how much they really know, given their relatively short lives. I know people in their 40s and older who aren't as receptive to such a wide array of possibilities.
Here are a few of their recommendations, presented verbatim from the cards.
2009 brochure, designed by Jenna Brouse!
Four Eyed Monsters: independent movie
This is Art: website
Architecture in Helsinki
Bands I like- Death Cab for Cutie, Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, Band of Horses, Hotel Lights, the Postal Service. Thank you!
Sufjan Stevens (music), What's Up Doc (movie)
books: anything by David Sedaris movies: nevermind, I can't think of any good ones
band: Kay Kay and his Weathered Underground
Velvet Goldmine Watch it. It's a nice movie about glam rock. One man emboides every glam rock god ever! Also, take a listen to Tiger Army's "Music from Regions Beyond..."
movie: Waking Life
Cyanide & Happiness online comic @ exposim. net It's, quote "fuckin hilarious" Google it
Movie The Fountain thanks Diana!
Speed Grapher anime'
book: The Magus John Fowles
Boys and Girls in America: the Hold Steady 
Tsubasa Reservoir by Clamp. It's a manga, so if you do not care for manga, I am sorry. I did not know.
Band" Kamelot CDs: BLack Hole & Epic. Russian Literature: Baba yaga and Kosche. You have to look this one up.
I'm going to save the rest of these for another day. It's such a delight to recognize the imagination and spirit of the burgeoning adults (I find the term "teenager" demeaning) that I want to save some of it!

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