Tuesday, September 6, 2011

First Day of School

Wow, I don't know how the Summer has slipped by so fast but here it is September and this was my first day back to classes. This should be a very stimulating final year for me, intellectually and creatively, a defining year I'd say. My courses are, I think, going to be highly engaging and a great challenge.

Today my first class Advanced Art Seminar, taught by Professor Ropson ( Jerry ), who is a great teacher, artist, is informative, knowledgeable and fun. He encourages active participation and he has a wonderful rapore with his students. I would say he motivates students to participate, not just because he brings candy to class, but because he is the salt of the earth, which enables his students to connect easily with him as a person and as an artist. Jerry is a Newfoundlander and I'm certain he does all of Newfoundland very proud.

I was very excited when he emphasized the importance of keeping a class journal and wanting us to talk and discuss in class, both elements he considers to be key in our participation and successful completion of Art Seminar.

I am really looking forward to this course, as Jerry's approach to Art Seminar is practical relying on the student's own self motivation, interests and concerns to shape the direction of the seminar. He does have a specific vision, he shared today with the class, and has made it clear that he wants us, his students to share our vision as well. I believe Jerry is another one of those heuristic teachers I spoke of in one of my previous posts, and I have provided a link to that post highlighted above.

I dropped by his office today and there were lots of fascinating things to see; collections of miniature animals, many of Jerry's sneakers, a great poster that says, "What Would Neil Young Do?", and a collection of axe handles, that double as rulers, that Jerry has made, and some of Jerry's paintings that hang on the wall of his office. All that was missing was a cup of tea or a drink and piece of fruitcake, which is very much a Newfoundland tradition when folks come to visit.

I am so fortunate and blessed to be a student at Mount Allison University, having such great teachers like Professor Jerry Ropson.

And now as I begin my fourth and final year the only regret I think I will have when it comes to an end is going to be that, it will come to an end. 


[hyoo-ris-tik or, often, yoo-] 
serving to indicate or point out; stimulating interest as a means of furthering investigation.
encouraging a person to learn, discover, understand, or solve problems on his or her own, as by experimenting, evaluating possible answers or solutions, or by trial and error: a heuristic teaching method.
of, pertaining to, or based on experimentation, evaluation, or trial-and-error methods.
Computers, Mathematics . pertaining to a trial-and-error method of problem solving used when an algorithmic approach is impractical.

No comments: