Sunday, November 20, 2011

Week 4 Reading Reflection

I loved the concept of enrollment, defined in the book as “generating possibility and creating a spark in others”. I discussed in a previous discussion board post about, involving the way that music has impacted my life, the most memorable concert that I ever attended. I’ve made it a point on the first day of my course to ask my students this question “Why are you here? What inspired you to find a career in the Show Production field?”. I start by discussing what first inspired me, and it was August 4th 1988 at the Philadelphia Spectrum (RIP). The band Aersosmith was the headliner, and an up and coming new group called Guns and Roses was the opening act. To this day, I remember the curtain dropping, and Aerosmith ripping through the song “Toys in the Attic”, and at that moment, I saw a concert from an entirely different angle. Instead of just watching the show, I wanted to be a part of that show.
Now, I’m not just spouting this off to my students to relive past glory, but to show them that I was in their shoes, and that they can make it into this business and be successful if they remember what brought them into this in the first place. In other words, make them remember what inspires them, don’t think of this as school, but more of as a pathway to reach their dreams. That is the same idea as “sharing the spark”, and having my students enrolled, not just “attending”.

The chapter on “Being the Board” was, honestly, way too broad in its discussions. The point that I took away from it was to not make judgments, or place blame, without first asking “why” to yourself. While this is, in my view, good practice, the authors tried to enforce this point so much that it became generic and cloudy. The anecdote about he violist named Cora would have sufficed to explain the idea of looking at the big picture before rushing to judgment, while the anecdote about the drunk driver seemed unnecessary. Yes, we can look at the big picture, but we also must understand that there are things in life that we do not have control over, and this is the reason that we have laws and government to help protect us from others’ behavior.

 "House Lights...Go"


  1. This is so inspiring, Shawn. I love what you shared about the first day of your classes. You are sharing your spark with your students. Reminding them of their potential, and that they can be just involved in what you do, as you do, is beautiful. I think you have truly grasped the message in the book. Plus, you have given me ideas for my own classroom, as how to apply the idea of enrollment much better.

  2. I took "Being the Board" to mean being an active participant in your life, instead of a passive watcher to whom life just happens. I do agree that the stories seemed disconnected, though it is a point that I try to make with those around me.

    You've attended my CE on Bloom's Taxonomy and learning objectives. You may remember that one of my first slides talks about the disconnect that is happening when an instructor says "my students just don't get it". In that slide I'm challenging instructors to be an active participant in not just the education of their students, but also in their students' academic experiences. Instructors don't have to be a passive beach upon which waves and waves of clueless students are thrown.

    Though I admit that the beach metaphor may not make any more sense than the drunk driver.

  3. Being the Board continues to be the toughest chapter to grasp or continues to be the most discussed chapter. :-)