Literary Theatre or Pleasure of Creativity

Mariet Simonyan

There is something surprising in the continuity of learning-teaching process, a lifelong continuity. When does teaching begin? What does man learn? How does he learn? Who is the learner and who is the teacher? Why are naturally acquired skills consolidated unnoticed without any persistent resistance, without any boredom and complaint? Why does the teaching process become a problem for both the learner and teacher at educational institutions? This series of questions can be continued, but I want to present some of my observations made during the implementation of the project “learner-instructor” which are directly or indirectly connected with these questions.

My narration is about the activities carried out in a new educational environment, different from the ordinary lessons in the classroom.       

The offer came from a 10th grader Shushan Adamyan (I am teaching Armenian Language and Literature in this class). There had been no hint or obligation. Everything was based on her own initiative. “I want to work with the sixth graders. I want to organize a literary theatre. Will you help me?”  Does Shushan have any natural pedagogical inclinations or orientation? I don't know. I can't say. We haven't spoken about this. We are usually unaware of the most important things about our learners. Anyway, Shushan introduced her project. It was a good period to start the project. The three-week winter camp was starting.       

Shushan offered her project to the two 6th grade classes whre I teach. How would the 6th graders react to the offer made by a high school learner? You should have seen the inspiration expressed by a group of 6th graders. It turned out that they not only considered a senior learner to be their instructor but also a lovely and dear person. I can’t say whether this sincere relationship is because of the little age difference or whether it is based on Shushan Adamyan’s peaceful character. The Middle School learners chose the place for their everyday trainings. It was the large hall of the country studies club which is on the basement floor of the Mother School. It was obvious that they wanted a change, a new environment from habitual lessons in their classroom. However well are lessons organized in a classroom, they are tiresome and sometimes boring. Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s The Little Prince was chosen to be performed. At first, Shushan reread the story as she didn’t remember it well. She read it easily without any big efforts in two days. It would have taken her weeks to read it if I had given it as an ordinary lesson task. What a good learning motivation it was for a 10th grader!

The advertizing clips of the performance

 

 

The sixth graders knew the story, but it was clear that they had to read it again. The work began: writing the scenario, forming the cast, rehearsals…. There were so many Rodary like creative solutions: beginning with the advertizing clips and the title and ending with performing different scenes. Infinite imagination… I have to confess that it was not easy work to do: disagreements, compromises, group discussions, disputes and mutual agreements. I was delighted in Shushan's patience, delicacy in her relationship with junior learners, love and quietness with which she treated the Middle School learners. And the sixth graders loved Shushan so much.    

 

Here is the result of our winter camp work.

 

This is so much inspiring! It is a real pedagogy based on loving and pleasant atmosphere. When your key objective is not teaching something, when you live and create, when you are looking forward for the rehearsal time, when you go or run to the meeting with your friends, when there is no obligation ''you musn't be late'' because you yourself don't want to be late     thinking that if are late you will miss something very pleasant and important, when you learn because you are to perform. How can you go without learning? What will you tell your friends as an excuse? Who is learning and who is teaching. Who is giving and who is taking> It is a natural process where we are all learners and teachers. Consequently, we are all beneficiaries. It is like in real life: natural and live. And the most important thing is that we all do it with pleasure. 

 

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