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Teaching Ourselves


For years people have suggested that I teach. Something within the idea of that always made me cringe, and I could never understand it.

Certainly I loved school; I did well and was inspired by many good teachers, what then created the overwhelming discomfort? I am committed to young people, committed to expanding the minds and hearts of others, (and myself)…

As I’ve been penning the “Hope Dances” stories it dawned on me.

Teaching is not just about 4 walls and a chalkboard. Of course I teach, I teach in just about everything that I do, and through doing so I learn.

I feel we need to get away from this limiting belief that teaching must occur in classrooms. As an artist I also suffer from this outmoded, outdated, and predictable model. We are encouraged to ‘lead workshops’ in order to supplement our income, and many of us do. And whilst good things can and do come from this, there are other ways. Sir Ken Robinson the eminent educationalist speaks on this far more coherently then I do, he points out how our educational structures are based upon an industrial/factory model. How from the age of 6 we focus our attention entirely on the shoulders up (and to the left). How the other aspects of LIFE, creativity being a key part, are seen as extras. This dis-ease follows into the rest of our lives.

Many of you are parents and many of you will be parents someday, and if not will have had some child who has had a profound influence in your life – looking into the bright promise of their faces, you want everything for her or him, but in order for that to happen, we also need to change ourselves, our limiting beliefs. We need to expand our personal experience beyond the four walls, allowing ourselves to be that much freer, that much more aspirational, that much more… of ourselves. On every level. And so their world will be better.

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