By now you see that we have created a training program comprising three steps—three steps toward mastery. Why three steps?
Three is a respected number, with a long, noble history. I only mention that to remind everyone we are in good company.
When it comes to mastering the art of teaching (or virtually any art), three stages of growth have been noticed through the ages as common, and therefore common sense. Teachers generally move through these three stages or levels on their way to mastery—if they are lucky enough to be trained by existing mentor teachers.
- Stage one is the beginning, thus the novice stage (the apprentice or assistant, the greenhorn, the “newbie”). A novice works regularly under the supervision and tutelage of a mentor or master.
- Stage two is that stage in which, after studying under a master, we become proficient in the art and able to begin to serve alone sometimes without direct supervision (the journeyman, peer or associate). Supervision and coaching, however, continue throughout this stage.
- Stage three is that stage in which, after serving with a master and with others at our own level, we are finally ready to begin training other novices (master, expert, mentor).
We think it will take classical educators an average of two years of training and study to move through each stage. In other words, a teacher working with dedication might be able to become a mentor-teacher after 5-6 years. Most of us will take longer than this….
What will training entail to become not just a mentor teacher, but a mentor classical teacher? That will be the subject of another blog article. Every teacher must learn effective pedagogy (and this is an art learned best in practice with coaching), but he or she must also dive deeply into the content of the arts he or she teaches. That is to say, a great classical teacher will be a master of content and method. As we will see in the next blog article, there are distinctive classical aspects to both content and method.