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Book Clubs for Making Change

Gather a book club to read Making Change together!  

 

Or, if you are already part of a book club, propose Making Change as your next book to read and discuss!

Book clubs are like teaching artistry—a perennial way to connect people and an adaptable art with real impact and many kinds of pleasure involved. 

The traditions of book clubs vary, but reader groups always find as much satisfaction in connecting and building friendships as in learning from the books they discuss.

 

The field of teaching artistry was hit harder by the pandemic than any other sector of the arts—here is one important way we can recover our bonds with one another even as we learn together how to build our field.

If you can gather a group of ten, Eric will be excited to join you via Zoom for your meeting!

Here are four kinds of groups that might be interesting to gather, to study Making Change together. Or invent your own!  All kinds of book groups will help this book achieve its goal of creating new supporters, new advocates, new possibilities for teaching artistry.


1.  Insiders

Gather a group of teaching artists and others who know about teaching artistry.  The focus for this group might be to share what you learn from reading Making Change, and to have an honest discussion about taking on the role of advocate to cultivate new supporters for local programs, for individuals in the group, and for the field. 


Questions to consider in discussion:

  • What did we learn about the practice and field of teaching artistry?
     

  • What do we imagine could become possible if the field had more visibility and funding?
     

  • Why do people in the field tend not to advocate for the whole field? Can that change?
     

  • How can we see ourselves using this book to build the field?


2.  Insiders AND Newbies

The book is written to speak to those who don’t know about teaching artistry—so bring together those who know about the field with those who don’t. What a different conversation you will have. 

 

Insiders can do a lot of productive asking and listening, to learn what those new to the field are interested in, what they are impressed and surprised by.

 

Together, the group can think about how teaching artistry lives locally and how it could make a more significant local impact. This book group is an excellent setting for advocacy. 


Questions to consider in discussion:

  • Which stories in the book made the biggest impression on you, and why?
     

  • What jumped out as especially interesting and valuable about teaching artistry?
     

  • What would you enjoy doing with a teaching artist? 
     

  • Are there ways you feel you can support this field?

3. Explorers

A group in which everyone is new to teaching artistry.  (Oh, how we’d love to eavesdrop on that group to learn what fresh thinking about this amazing field looks and sounds like!)

 

Members of this book club can enjoy the different impressions the book made on different members and can imagine freely where they would like to see teaching artist practice helping in their own lives and communities. 

Questions to consider in discussion:

  • Which stories from the book stayed with you the most? And why?
     

  • What aspects of teaching artist practice do you find most intriguing or surprising?
     

  • As you read of stories and examples of teaching artist work, what kinds of ideas and possibilities did you imagine for your community and interest areas?  
     

  • Do you want to help the field?  Are there things you can do that would help the field locally?  Are there ways you can help make this work more visible?  


4. Working Group

Gather a group of teaching artist colleagues who are inclined to take action—those who want to use the book to change the local status quo of teaching artistry. 

 

Members read the book with an eye to how it can be useful to make a difference. 


Questions to consider in discussion:

  • What ideas about teaching artistry seem most important, to cultivate new supporters?
     

  • What resources mentioned in the book might be useful for us?
     

  • Who should read this book, and how can we get it into their hands?
     

  • How can we actually cultivate new advocates, and not just hand over a book and hope something good happens?  
     

Two good resources to help Working Group Book Clubs think about effective advocacy:

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