I enjoy watching others teach as it teaches myself a great deal about teaching. So I am most grateful to have had the opportunity to be there at my students' practicum work recently, and to join them in their reflections afterwards.
One of them talked about the issue of trust, "I found that the more I become anxious about my teaching, the less I trust my students." What turned out was he started to talk more and give less opportunties for the students to experience, experiement or even speak.
Another talked about open-mindedness, "I had too strong an agenda and it blinded me from seeing what ideas the students were offering." One of her students created the role of a robber in the drama - something she didn't expect, and she thought such a wicked character was not going to work for the drama which was about offering help to those in need. When she got in a Teacher-in-role as a poor woman and interacted with the students, the robber gave her some jewels from her robbery. She didn't even take notice of what was happening and just ignored the student. What she didn't realise was the student was actually offering a wonderful idea for the drama - people may become robbers for many reasons, but when they see others in need some may offer help too! Such an idea could actually open up a wonderful opportunity for reflecting upon the complexity of humanity and what people consider in offering help to those in need.
Though these beginning drama teachers may find their works not working out perfectly, the reflections they made are very valuable indeed. What the two of them have discovered are something really important in one's journey of becoming good drama teachers. I always tell my students that it is okay to mess up as long as they can learn something from it by reflecting on what has happened and why. We learn much faster this way than merely playing safe and being naive, don't we?