The medium is the message

To clarify the expectations for the graduating class of 2014:
One of the Latin students among you is expected to return to FCS some years from now to continue the FCS Latin teacher lineage. Doc taught Magistra. Doc and Magistra taught me. Now Doc, Magistra, and I have taught you. You have a few years to sort out the details; I expect to see one of you back here before we’re all retired and gone away.

As you are figuring out the logistics of who will come back and when, you can start thinking about this one in advance: you’ll need to decide what kind of a teacher you will be during Meeting for Worship. Will you be an eyes-closed teacher or an eyes-open teacher? I’ve tried a number of times to be an eyes-closed teacher — a Ms Novo, a Mr V, or a Mr Gruber — but I’m not. I’ve tried to be the kind of teacher who comes in to Meeting for Worship, sits up straight, closes his eyes, and does work. Those teachers rarely speak, so you rarely know what’s going through their minds… but you know that it’s something important. You can almost see the sweat forming on their brows. Utter concentration on their faces. No slouching, no fidgeting. Something meaningful is happening on the inside, and it’s taking all of their attention.

But when I try to close my eyes in Meeting for Worship, my brain starts to swirl around inside of my skull, the floor under my left foot starts rolling in one direction and the floor under my right foot rolls in another. Before I know it my head starts nodding and I realize, again, that I’m not meant to be an eyes-closed teacher.  Continue reading