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'Rules' for teaching and learning; Sister Mary Cortia Kent.

Learning is a skill. Teaching (or, more accurately, facilitating learning) is a skill too. These are foundation skills that can then be used to acquire other competencies.

These are all subject to "skill fade"; they deteriorate when not regularly used.

So I find it useful to tap into the wisdom of the broadest range of people to get an insight on what learning is really about.

Sister Kent, looking exactly as mischievous as I had hoped.

Photo source; Wikipedia

Sister Kent, looking exactly as mischevious as I had hoped. Source; Wikipedia

The following 'rules' were written by Sister Mary Cortia Kent who headed the art department at Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles for thirty years. Her own unique and bold screen printing made her a leading light in the Pop Art movement. (And if, like me, you did not associate screen printing with 'boldness', take a look at an example of her work at the bottom of this page).

Immaculate Heart College Art Department rules

1. Find a place you trust and then try trusting it for a while.

2. General duties of a student: pull everything out of your teacher. Pull everything out of your fellow students.

3. General duties of a teacher: pull everything out of your students.

4. Consider everything to be an experiment.

5. Be self disciplined. This means finding someone wise or smart and choosing to follow them. To be disciplined is to follow in a good way. To be self disciplined is to follow in a better way.

6. Nothing is a mistake. There's no win and no fail. There's only make.

7. The only rule is work. If you work it will lead to something. It's the people who do all the work all of the time who eventually catch on to things.

8. Don't try to create and analyse at the same time. They're different processes.

9. Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It's lighter than you think.

10. "We're breaking all the rules. Even our own rules. And how do we do that? By leaving plenty of room for x quantities" John Cage.

Helpful hints: Always be around. Come or go to everything. Always go to classes. Read anything you can get your hands on. Look at movies carefully, often. Save everything - it might come in handy later.

Sister Mary Cortia Kent, 1967

Alexander Technique in Glasgow
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