Transitions commence new adventures. Make 'em last…
It was all smiles varnishing wood beams that will soon be used to create a wood & rock pathway underneath the “Rainbow Archway” that students and I had constructed a few years ago. With the large 1 million won ($1000) prize garnered with our 2013 Seoul Milk Carton Project, wood and rocks were purchased and will soon be assembled into a pathway underneath the archway. No surprise that my students found this varnishing work to be much more enjoyable than searching and somewhat painfully installing rock by rock into the ground. You might also be thinking, why was the process of installing locally-found rocks stopped? Well, there are various reasons. First, students began to utterly abhor the work of finding and installing stones, which I completely understand. Second, while students and I had made some progress, there was still a long way to go and not much time left to complete it, not to mention the school administration was getting a little bent on wanting to see the project completed very soon, which is also very understandable. Third, my art class is also only an hour a week, and unlike my previous art classes that were also able to spend time after-school in order to complete large projects, every student in this year’s class has other obligations everyday, thus limiting our work time and making it impossible to complete such a large project in a timely manner.
Therefore, the pathway project has been acutely simplified and will be completed fairly soon. The once-installed stones were lifted out and wood beams have been recently varnished. Next week, these beams will be nicely installed into the ground and purchased stones will fill in the gaps between them. Then, a large effort will go into somehow attractively congealing all the rocks around the beams and pathway space. While this was not my original plan, with very limited time and student-power, I’m confident this new pathway plan will elicit the desired effect.
As with every project I have endeavored to complete, not everything goes according to plan. Also, with different groups of students comes different sets of values, desires, and interests that sometimes do not jive with what I may envision. Ultimately, as a teacher, and simply in life, I have learned that every project or big decision has separate challenges that must be faced along with differing circumstances, but goals can be reached with consistent effort, hope, and compromise.
Stay tuned for the completed project.