Students who want to be there…the joys and the terror!!
So, as Tarot Teachers, we have students who want to be there in our class. How cool is that! There’s an adult learning theory model that says we need to be as aware of their learning needs and make our classroom compatable with their needs and desires.
Adults look at what as taught as an Experience which they take in and Reflect on it through the lens of past learning experiences and the style in which they learn. Then they process the subject and Connect it to their life experience, their thoughts, philosophies which tend to be more fully formed than when teaching children and young adults. When they make this connection [or not], they Decide the relevance of the topic.
Through their life’s journey, adult students are less likely to accept information at face value and more likely to think critically about it. Not all, but many!
- They will ask questions
- They will evaluate your statements and make counter-arguments
- They will be able to admit that they don’t know something and ask for clarification.
- Adult students are interested, willing to examine beliefs and underlying assumptions.
- They will listen and give feedback–there lies terror and joy!
- They look for evidence, will check your facts
- They will adjust their opinion
- They will examine and reject information if they find it is incorrect or irrelevant
The joy of this process is that you don’t have to convince the Tarot student that they need to learn the topic. They want to be there and they are most likely ready to learn. You don’t really have to convince them the topic is important or interesting.
The terror is that in their reflection on the material, if they don’t find it relevant and don’t make a connection to it, they won’t continue to learn it. I think that includes the idea that “this stuff is too hard to learn.” They are more likely to know that life is short and there’s much to learn. They will vote with their feet.
So we start with an advantage and we end up on the precipice. Like the fool, we step off the cliff into a grand adventure. Perhaps we will fly or perhaps we will land with a thud. I take reassurance in the fact that Wil E. Coyote always comes back for more. His relationship with the roadrunner is always on, always active, and always full of energy.