Recounting The Classes That’s Still Intact – Part I

Surely I can cover all those wonderful classes since childhood that left their mark, if only I preserve any souvenir for reminiscence. But then either they won’t be the best for the very essence of being the best or they would overshadow the ones which I really want to write about in this post.

Fortunately I don’t remember any such class before college. They were all conventional – essential subject, text books, read, understand, devour, write exams, score marks, be happy over scoring the perfect, cry over losing that 2 marks because you overlooked the question, get result, throw it, forget about the course, move on. And conventional classes don’t make up for the best or being memorable for that matter. I never took any singing, dance or music class, so no chance of discussing about them as well.

I attended drawing classes for few months though. I was in 6th standard then – a nervous chap with an awkward feeling as drawing was somewhere at the top of my dislike list back then. Late & wet because it was drizzling, I entered that large verandah with the top like a dome where few students, scattered on the floor, were lost in scratching in their drawing books. My cousin introduced me to the teacher as he has already been attending the classes.

Drawing teacher was quite young compared to the traditional teachers I was used to seeing, my father being one. He took my drawing copy, drew a wonderful bird in one go and handed it to me to draw another one besides it. Then he took my brother’s copy and drew an intricate floral design with a pen. Little me was impressed. Atleast I was assured of the right guidance.

But it was time for my start. I tried and erased, tried again, cursed myself for being bad at drawing, drew crappy curvy lines, somehow managed to get a bird outline, showed him. He acknowledged it normally and told me to practice. Fast forward 10 years, that’s the only drawing on top of my head which I can draw in seconds.

1

The bird my teacher drew had stroking &  hedging on branches – esoteric words!

Next I had drawn a horse that I proclaimed as the masterpiece I would draw in my lifetime. I kept appreciating it day & night, squinted whenever I caught a glimpse and boasted in front of those asking what have you learnt in the drawing class – atleast I had my one cent. That drawing copy is nowhere to be seen now. Probably it would be lying in some abandoned corner of my storeroom or probably it went too far surfing on the tide of time. No drawing, no copy, no drawing class anymore – it’s just the memory. Whoopf!

I think the best classes are short lived. Like a workshop or a seminar. Like a boot camp you attended or like creative arts courses we have in our curriculum. I also believe that generally (and mind when I say ‘generally‘) the best classes aren’t our usual semester classes. It’s quite possible that you meet the grey beard who would change your life forever.

My prof. starts his day with a drawing addressed to growing up of his little son

It’s phenomenal! Sometimes the best drive for your work is your emotion for someone else 

You would be attributing a part of your success to him but it’s the person whom you would be remembering. You would remember what subject he taught the first time but you won’t remember the learning and fun you had in that course for two prominent reasons – first, it would be suppressed by more significant portion that comes further as a result of your association (like you ended up doing research work under that prof.) or your personal liking wasn’t reflected in the same way by your peers and so psychologically its intensity faded over time.

Above all this, a class will stand out only if it appeals to your aspiration, provided other parameters remain as usual. If you aspire to be a screenplay writer, there are high chances that you would’ve much better time in your English class reading stories than the fellows who despise it for the same reason you had hard time coping up in your Physics class. If you’re good with textbooks you would appreciate theory classes. But if you’re more on the practical side, lab classes are pure bliss and a delightful alternative to your boring lectures, provided its intended execution and your enthusiastic involvement.

Why can’t the usual semester classes be the best? I didn’t clarify on that part.

In my personal opinion, it’s because that’s how they’re supposed to be. They’re predictable. The course content is redundant. Very likely that it’s been taught by the same professor whose classes you took in your previous semesters. But even after all this, if everything is favorable, then again it won’t remain special for the entire duration of a semester and thereafter because the fun will be diluted with time. It’s like a hangover party – obviously you would enjoy it if it’s for day or two but what if you do it non-stop for months.

It’s just my realization. Tell me in comments if your perception varies or cite an example from your fun journey if this post took you back to those joyous moments. It’s just a build-up post ( that’s why Part 1 😛 ) In the next part, I would tell you about specific classes which inspired me to write about this topic. Till then keep learning, keep enjoying and yeah do remember that classrooms aren’t always enclosed with four walls and a roof. Peace out! ✌

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