Let me tell you about a day in the life of a substitute teacher. Occasionally, I have the opportunity to work as a substitute teacher at the classical school where my children attend. Personally, I prefer to sub in the upper grades (7-12), despite not knowing much of the subject matter in the classes for which I sub.

Recently, I got a call to sub for the upper school art teacher. Now….I may write for an art blog, and I have designed an artist’s website, but teaching art….that’s really not in my wheelhouse.

student teacher blog, pen and ink old camera

Our school places a high value on art. We want our students to learn to love that which is beautiful. Through art, They have an opportunity to both learn what is truly beautiful, but also to create their own beauty.

student teacher blog, blue animal skull

Much to my delight, the students needed very little guidance from me. They are required to draw fifteen works in their journal every semester. So on this particular day, they were working diligently on those fifteen works.

teacher student, colorful journal

I was blown away by the creativity and diversity of what the students created. I asked for their permission to share some of their work with you, and they were happy to do so.

teacher student blog, leaf & butterfly

The students clearly had some works that they preferred over others. However, in general, they were eager to display their work and talk about it. What a tremendous encouragement to me!

student teacher blog, collage

I was stunned by the skillful beauty that these high school students were creating. And I was challenged by their willingness to share their beauty with others. How many times am I afraid to show my creations to others, for fear of what criticism might come my way?

teacher student blog, student sketchbook, skeleton painting

I was the teacher that day, but I became the student. The students had much to teach me about beauty and confidence. I’m so grateful to be in an environment where learning is beautiful and mutual.

student teacher blog, tree

So I hope you enjoy a sampling of the students’ works. But even more, I hope you will look for opportunities to be the teacher and share your gifts with others.

teacher student blog, face, flowers

What are you working on now?


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