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Post: “Lessons Unplanned” by Jocelyn Pihlaja

Tue, 10 Jul 2018 21:12:23 GMT

Tue, 10 Jul 2018 21:12:23 GMT

What a wonder this was to read. I love the way each student serves as an individual and as a case study. There are complexities of people throughout the whole of this work; boundaries and empathetic love all wrapped up with even more administrative boundaries and humanity's want to care. What a tremendous read; thank you so much for sharing it. I can't wait to reread it again in the future.

Sat, 08 Sep 2018 02:59:15 GMT

Wow, just wow. As a student, I know how unconsciously easy it is to dehumanize teachers, cast them as totalitarian antagonists, and myself, of course, as a tortured victim. Almost immediately with the vernacular and humor in section 1, it was impossible to cast the new (and extremely sweaty) professor as a dreaded archetype. The professor's life was woven throughout each section's lesson, dually characterizing the teacher while illustrating the vital teachings that shaped not only the progression of the professor's teaching style, but her own beliefs and ideals. With equal proportions of humility and humor, this creative nonfiction piece has officially turned me on to the genre! I especially like the contrast of how the professor's learnings shaped the story, not her students'. Overall, I enjoyed this story immensely: each section was relatable and riveting in its stark portrayal of humanity.