What I learned in school this week…

We were given only one prompt for this activity: “Shoot a self-portrait where you aren’t directly in the shot.”

Of course hands flew up and questions were rapidly fired at the teacher, but he simply replied “you decide” and the questions stopped. Through the class discussion that followed the activity, we learned the benefits of giving directions or constraints that enable creativity to fly. We were forced to think outside the box and find some way to still express ourselves. The results was that we saw a class full of very different interpretations of the directives with the very clear exception that everyone succeeded in shooting images that described who they felt they were in the moment.

The next part of the activity asked us to connect our images to others on out table that we felt had some connection, and then find connections between others as well. We used masking tape between the devices in which the images could be seen and wrote what we felt connected them on the tapes. Afterward we did the same thing with a spool of string to make connections throughout the whole class. The end result here is we discovered an activity that brought us closer together, illustrated our similarities, and established us as a mutual learning community.

As the teacher stated, he gave constraint (self-portraits without us directly in them) where he really didn’t know the outcome, and that is why magic occurred. We experienced occasioning the possibility of differences in a growing community that offered us support. The peer learning aspect rose from the sharing of similarities. It was an overall excellent experience.

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