From this week’s reading assignment, chapter 12 really stood out to me. My first reaction to the chapter was jealousy—I was so envious of those few, fortunate music students of Zander’s who had the opportunity to study under so many scholars in England! After some reflection, I became even more jealous of the scholars themselves, who had the opportunity to meet with students in an informal, ungraded setting, to share their knowledge and insights with an eager audience of pupils. (I realize that Zander’s point in relating this anecdote is not to emphasize the nature of the learning environment; however, as I have recently been asked to consider my ideal learning environment—both for the sake of this MAC course and at the school where I teach, my mind focused on this aspect of Zander’s story.)
I consider myself very lucky to work in the school where I do, where students take their college plans for granted and pursue academic success. Still, I yearn for an educational setting that is somehow apart from the constant struggle over grades, and that allows teachers to define their own standards for student success. Zander’s model sounds like one I’d like to follow!
Zander, R. S., & Zander, B. (2000). The art of possibility [Electronic]. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press.