Notes from the field: Ever since the third week of classes – we are on our fifth week now – I can feel the sense of group spirit building among the participants and between myself and the participants – the instant warmth of recognizing one another’s body language and ways of expressing thoughts and emotions, and ways of doing things that make each of us unique.  These things are the key to understanding one another, and it also takes time to build this kind of knowledge of each other.  From my perspective as the teacher I now know who will arrive on time, who will be late, who will always raise their hand to answer the questions, who will command the most space in the room, who will be hardly noticed, who will be laughed at, who will always be listening to me no matter how chaotic the classroom becomes …  and I know that each participant has their own list of observations as they get to know each other.  What we are building is a greater sense of ease, and eventually with this things flow easier, in learning, teaching, working, communication and creating art.  I think group energy is one of the most comforting things to feel.  I also should add that as this group energy builds I feel more supported by the community and by the youth.  Seeing each youth show up to class and participate, I know they’ve made a commitment to the project.  – Christina

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