Tuesday, January 07, 2003

I took a trip through Cawthon, the musicians' country club, yesterday and it's amazing how much money they put into the place. The building is a combination of dorm rooms, classrooms, and practice rooms, so incoming music majors can focus on music with fewer distractions. Beyond card-locked doors, across hardwood floors, and through a piano lounge nearly the size of Monaco, is a classroom with every technology known to man. With video and audio solutions and both a PC and a Mac, this classroom could probably teach by itself. There's even a document scanner that you can use to display your hand and other useful body parts on the overheard projector in real-time.

Of course, my other section is in a giant rehearsal room that can easily hold one hundred people. It has no permanent sound system and a single chalkboard with no permanent staves. It'll be a challenge to teach both sections effectively without shortchanging the latter class.

I've always been a little doubtful of the all-in-one experiments that schools try to keep students on track. The most meaningful parts of college are the outside interactions, and if students have no impetus to get out and about, they just miss out. It's as if the slogan is "Come to college for life experience; just stay in this room until it's done though."

P.S. The chalkboard eraser in 102 is friggin' huge. You could erase me with it.

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