Citizen Schools Apprenticeship: Week 4

Be careful what you wish for. I was lamenting the fact that my class was getting too big. This week, we only had 5 students, and one left early. The attendance uncertainty (due to absences or students dropping the apprenticeship*) is unsettling, especially as I try to design lesson plans that build on previous weeks. We have six more weeks to work on our stories, but how do I catch you up if you’re an hour and a half and a plot outline behind the rest of the class?

Pluses for this week: Students got their plot outlines done for their final WOW! stories, and we had a productive session of story-sharing and feedback-giving. Putting your work-in-progress out there for scrutiny is always a tough part of any creative process, and I’m proud of them for doing it—and for doing it respectfully. Ooh, also, Dialogue Journals are going well.

Deltas: Still struggling to get the final product in front of them as motivation, so they are clear on what the next steps are. They know next week is storyboarding, and that there’s collaging after that, and scanning after that…but that’s about it. It’s difficult because we’re braving new territory; it’s not like there are many collage online graphic novels to show as examples. Ideally, I would have already created one as an example…I’m working on one right now out of necessity, but it’s sort of sketchy at the moment. Also, it’s a pain to set up the projector to show something for 2 minutes, but I still think it’ll be helpful. Working on it, working on it.

*Ouch. Ego stings, but at least I’m left working with students who want to be there. Lesson learned: first impressions matter a lot. Catch their attention quick, and keep it. Make the final (WOW!) project relevant, and make that relevance clear up front.

Beer Bottle Temple

wat pa maha chedi kaew temple

Buddhist monks in the city of Khun Han close to the Cambodian border collected 1 million Heineken and Chang beer bottles to “build the Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew temple and everything in its premises, from a crematorium to shelters and toilets.”

Locals helped by bringing the monks bottles, the community was able to clean up the local area, and the final structure is beautiful as well as useful.

Learn more about the beer temple here.

wat pa maha chedi kaew temple shrine