Tuesday, August 26, 2008

a new adventure from ChIL

Hey there y'all -

Well. Here's some news. In just about a week, yours truly will be beginning something i never thought i would - my undergraduate degree.
I'm taking a hiatus from full-time arts-making and i'm going to learn about child development in an Early Childhood Education program. I want to be a teacher, and to do that i have to go to Teacher's College. To get into Teacher's College, however, i need to have an undergraduate degree. Never mind that i've been working with kids for longer than i haven't been working with kids, and i've been working in schools for the past 7 years. I need the piece of paper, and that requires an undergrad, which will require the next 4 years of my life. And then teacher's college, which will take at least another year.
However, after i've paid all that time to various institutions i will be able to do what i feel is important for me to do - have a Grade 2 class of kids of my own.

This came out of something i did with my amazing friend Jen Bulthuis, and about 14 years of working with kids and thinking about it. Jen is a toymaker, and she asked me to help her launch her new puzzle/puppets with a workshop for kids at a local kids shop. Well - I had about 20 kids under 5 all working together and having fun, the parents all asking where i taught - and in the middle of everything i asked myself 'why am i fighting this?' For years i have been working with kids and feeling pretty good about it, why not try to dive into it in more concentrated way?

I began looking into it, and all the Education Faculties said that they needed me to have an undergrad before accepting me. So i started looking around at the possibilities of an undergrad...at the same time as doing a six month residency at Islington Junior Middle School. The time I spent there with the students and teachers confirmed for me that teaching was something that i was feeling more and more called to do. Especially after spending time with the wonderful Grade 1s and 2s. So, i did even more research and finally decided on Ryerson here in Toronto and their Early Childhood Education program. That'll give me an even more solid base in child development than i already have, and then off to whatever teacher's college i can get into, maybe OISE at U of T. FIVE YEARS!!! Five years of school is what i'm looking at. It's a lot, and a big shift.

So, less art projects will be filling up my days. However, i won't be able to stop completely, so stay tuned if you like, and more will be coming. I've started another blog too, about ecological and sustainable living...you can check that one out too. It's called Artists of Unwaste at artistsofunwaste.blogspot.com.

Take care, keep checking in. I'll be seeing you!