Buckminster Fuller once commented that there’s nothing about a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to become a butterfly. It’s a great line, but it misses the mark – at least as far as artistic development is concerned. Every good teacher bears witness to such metamorphoses. Watching young artists at work – their energy sparkling with the intensity of a summer lightning storm – is an exercise in humility. you soon realize that your real purpose as a teacher may simply be as a catalyst, offering a few provocative ideas here, clearing the way past a few technical hurdles there, and eventually just pointing the way to the far horizon.
After that, well , all you can do is stand back and watch, hoping they can hold it all together long enough to convert their seemingly limitless potential into accomplishment. Over time it is life’s enduring patterns and rhythms that sustain us. This holds as true in education as in any other fact of life. Every student, sooner or later, will wear a teacher’s hat. And every teacher, periodically, will return as a student. The cycle is common and recurring, with teacher and student trading roles many times over the course of a lifetime. It’s a universal truth: giving back what we receive gives life meaning . Ask any parent.