Barter

I’m teaching drop-in classes in exchange for a spot in the glaze chemistry course that’s happening next week. I’m pretty happy about this. Not only do I get a free class (in an area of pottery that’s complicated enough that it would probably be a lot more useful than groping around in the dark on my own, which is my usual method of finding things out), but I get to practice teaching.

I spent years thinking I was a crap teacher. I used to do French conversation classes in university. I know my stuff, and was always able to answer the questions people had, so I felt okay during class… but as soon as it ended I would realize I was sweating and shaky. I could ignore the stage fright enough to get through the hour, but it was still there in the background. The last few months, though, I’ve been assisting or teaching workshops, and it’s been completely different. I really enjoy teaching people to work with clay… I like the hands-on approach that’s necessary, and I like the informal nature of art classes. And it’s hard to get stage fright from a bunch of people who are focusing on their projects, not me.

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