What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teacher

What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teacher

Postby Parkallen » Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:12 am

The theory of teaching typically focuses on students (albeit often in an disingenuous manner). Teaching theory is generally about how to transmit knowledge and skills from a trained source to another person. But what about the teacher's own goals and meanings?

As teachers we are in the class just like everyone else, we are experiencing ourselves as teachers, and we are experiencing the reflection of our teaching as it reflects off of our students. This two aspects, the direct experience and the reflection, have an effect on our being. It has both a physical and psychological effect, both short term and long term. Consider the simple effect of having "a good class", how that changes our day and our mood.

I could ask, what should a teacher strive for as a teacher, and the interesting flip side, what should a teacher strive for as a student?
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Re: What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teac

Postby ChiDragon » Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:09 am

Parkallen wrote:.....I could ask, what should a teacher strive for as a teacher, and the interesting flip side, what should a teacher strive for as a student?


Greetings, Parkallen
This is a very broad subject to be discussed. IMO Anyone can be a teacher or student. It is only relative. Here is the relationship between a student and a teacher. The one who knows a little more than the other is the teacher today. Tomorrow, the other knows a little more. Then, the other is the teacher. The one who raises a question knew less, the one who answers knew more. Indeed, it is a matter of communication to exchange ideas and learn from each other.

If a teacher strive for a teacher, actually, the teacher is a student in learning how to become a teacher. If one is already a teacher, then one will strive to be a better teacher. One must keep oneself updated to new knowledge to share with others. Hence, a teacher is always a student in a learning state.

BTW, I had learnt this idea from the conversation between Laotze(老子) and Confucius(孔子) when they were talking to each other sitting by the Yellow River.
A deep discussion requires explicit details for a good comprehension of a complex subject.
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Re: What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teac

Postby Bob Ashmore » Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:37 pm

Parkallen,
My wife asks me this question ALL THE TIME! She is confused as to why I would put myself through the rigors of teaching.
Especially something like TCC, which will sometimes have me buried under a sea of students, other times I have only one person who shows up for weeks on end.
It can get frustrating.
Yet...
I still keep doing it.
Why? What do I get out of being a TCC teacher?

I will try to figure that out and get back to you.
Right now...
I got nothing!
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Re: What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teac

Postby ChiDragon » Tue Mar 28, 2017 5:45 pm

One is being a Tai Chi teacher can learn alot from teaching. It is because one is expose oneself to a many people. At various time, many question were asked by others. In answering those questions by explaining to others is a great learning experience. Sometimes, it happens to be something that one wasn't aware of but it becomes much more clear after one listen to oneself.

Teaching Tai Chi gives one the pleasure to practice more. It is an amusement to observe how the students do one form so differently at times. It is a great enjoyment to see the students doing the form properly with a little guidance. It is the satisfaction that one can get from the ability to communicate with the students effectively.

At the beginning, all the students were turning their heads toward the teacher with all the moves. After few sessions, and I meant quite a few, their heads start to be looking in the right direction. Then, as a teacher, what a great relief to see the students are progressing. :o
Last edited by ChiDragon on Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
A deep discussion requires explicit details for a good comprehension of a complex subject.
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Re: What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teac

Postby Parkallen » Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:41 am

These are thought-provoking responses. I also feel in large part like I have not yet discovered why I teach. I go to class dutifully, similar to how a student would do. I gain many tangible experiences from teaching, always finding more understanding about tai chi, but not always on the topics I expected. Listening to ourselves speak is a unique conversation isn't it?

It's funny, I never considered going to Chinese philosophy for insight on this matter. I will check out the Laozi dialogues.
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Re: What do you want to get out of from being a Tai Chi teac

Postby fchai » Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:27 am

Greetings,
I actually do not see myself as a Taiji teacher, even if my students might see it differently. Rather, I see myself as providing guidance with some instruction thrown in, for them to discover for themselves the manifold potential and pathways of Taijiquan. Hopefully, they will become better people, physically, psychologically and even spiritually (but not in a religious context). Being of mature age, I hope that Taiji will give them a healthier and happier and longer life.
The benefit for me is the incentive to more deeply immerse myself in the practice and understanding of Taijiquan. I would like to impart all that I know, but that appears unlikely. Hopefully, some of the forms that I know are being taught by others and will not be lost. I am sure that they are, though perhaps not in the vicinity that I live. That would be my only regret.
Take care,
Frank
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