Saturday, 17 January 2009

Group Trust

I met my new classes this week - always a pleasure. One of the many joys of being a creative writing tutor is facilitating the bonding of a group of strangers and watching group trust develop as learners participate in activities designed to do just that. A creative writing group can't flourish without every learner feeling able to trust the tutor and the group. I get a great surge of delight when I'm having to politely tell a group of a-few-minutes-ago-nervous-strangers to 'shut up!' And with a tutor like me - they always do!
That is until I set the next activity to get them sharing again...

I found this image on several sites so I'm not sure whom to credit. But whoever designed it has caught the essence of a class: all focused, all equal and each with a distinctive style and voice.

4 comments:

Dave King said...

Nice post. You said enough for me to be able to picture the scene, and I liked what I pictured.

The Weaver of Grass said...

We have a writers group here in Wensleydale and I don't think we have really perfected our technique for running it yet. We spend an awful long time reading our work out and barely any time criticising each other's work. There is also a reluctance to hand out copies of one's work and I honestly don't know how you can comment without reading and thinking in advance. Do you agree? Have you any tips?

Mistlethrush said...

Hi Weaver - maybe we should make this a post instead of just a comment...

I agree entirely about needing time to read it thoroughly before critiquing. When I chaired Chorley & District Writers; Circle we circulated texts to be discussed before the meeting (usually by email) but had printed versions available for those who didn't have internet access. Those who had read the pieces before the meeting generally provided better critique.

The other main element for success is having a good chair. Sometimes who allocates the time fairly and knows how to invite everyone to comment constructively and encourages discussion and welcomes differing opinions.

I think I'll write a post on this...

jinksy said...

Oh, how I wish I was one of your new class members! When I tried a local writer's group here, it was more like a board meeting, which obviously translated into a bored meeting at the blot of a pen...

Thanks for coming to visit and comment today.

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