May 2010 to May 2011 has been the busiest year of my life. There have been more days of hard work and pure exhaustion than any other time I’ve ever experienced. And, lets be clear, this is not coal mining hard work pure exhaustion. But holy crap.
This past year I have:
- received a grant to go into schools and teach students how to find, create and develop theatrical and sustainable play ideas. And even more specifically teach students who hate to write, feel they can’t write, or have been told they have and never will have any creativity.
- Created the above program from scratch.
- Spent seven months at various times executing the above program at six different schools.
- Took on two extra teaching engagements.
- Created a different program for a week long drama camp that initially focused on building theatre skills.
- Revamped said program when the kids at said camp couldn’t give a fig about building theatre skills.
- Finished a full length and organized three productions over three months and two different states.
- Attended twelve conferences and taught at eight of those.
- Created and wrote ten theatrefolk newsletters.
- Created and wrote four newsletters for the organization I volunteer for.
- Took an Adjudication Intensive, and embarked on finding adjudication engagements.
- Adjudicated in Florida, and Ontario.
- Wrote three new one acts.
- And I am ending this year with four new play workshops in four different schools for those new one acts.
As I look at the whole thing on paper it makes me, well I can’t lie, it makes me a little bit stressed. I can’t believe I did all that.
But on the other hand, I’m pretty proud of everything I did. I improved a lot of skills this year. I really learned what the word ‘organized’ means. I created more than one project from scratch and was able to pass on the skills of that project to students, who then took them on to create their own projects. That’s very, very cool.
I learned vividly that though teaching is important to me, it’s not my primary passion. This fall was so consumed with teaching that I couldn’t write. That loss was quite tangible. It made me see that really, I’m a presenter, not a teacher. I have something valuable to present and I firmly believe in what I have to say and pass on. But the “teacher” stands for so much more than the material they pass on to their students. And if you think teachers have it easy needs to go spend a week in a classroom. You’ll change your tune so fast it’ll give you whiplash.
In the end, I know for a fact I wouldn’t have survived this year with out having an uber supportive partner both in work and in life. Craig you’re the best.
Hmmm, what to do next…..