Sunday, 23 February 2014

If you say you can Teach Art, then prove it.

As an Art Teacher I am keen to take every opportunity to see the work of others and share in ideas and experiences. I love visiting other classrooms and watching how they engage the kids, and it's not long before I'm sitting alongside a few children and helping them and discovering what they enjoy. So when my dear friend Maria invited me into her little primary school in the centre of Kefalos I was delighted. We sat and chatted as best we could, what with her English and my Greek conversation then not as good as it is today. This was some years ago now. As we sat and drank coffee Papou arrived with flowers for Maria's office and it was just so relaxed , not at all like the strict security rules our schools are under today.

So imagine how I felt when she dropped the bombshell."The children are really excited about you coming into today and waiting for their Art Lesson". she said. Oops, Nearly spilt the coffee. It's amazing how quickly you can think on your feet, and I found myself walking across the playground to the eagerly awaiting children. Ron remained with Maria and Papou drinking coffee.

OMG. What to do? 'Kalimera' went down rather well, followed by "Κάτσε κάτω",
not bad, but now what? Not so scary really as I had been given a small group of the most talented English speakers to help me, which is all well and good if your greek language guide book gave you all the words you needed for an Art Lesson. Anyway with simple instructions, mime, play acting and drawing we managed. In fact we had fun. I was able to tap into all the resources I use when teaching a class something I know absolutely nothing about. It was challenging, but what an opportunity.

Would I do it again? You bet and when I've moved to Kefalos I'd like to volunteer more often. The children were so friendly and eager to show how well they were trying and for quite some days after would stop and say hello when I met them in the village.

Just think one session with me could have coloured their view of Art forever . So apologies if it put you off.