Monday, December 10, 2012

50 posts! I win!

"Blogger" tells me that there are 50 posts in this blog, so I must have met my A&S 50 challenge!  Since several posts include multiple classes, I'm pretty confident that there have been more than 50 opportunities to teach. However, some of these are reruns. (Not completely, since no two classes are alike, but there was definite overlap - especially in the several incarnations of the persona classes.)  I wonder if I should tweak my challenge to "50 different classes" instead of simply "50 classes".  That sounds too much like work!

I think my time will be better used in improving the documentation for several of the classes I've already presented, and organizing the information better. I recall a class somewhere... taught by someone... that commands the listener to WRITE IT DOWN!  Like most of my shopping lists, many of my source notes were lost under the weight of a deadline. It would be a good idea to re-insert the documentation into each class script. (I remove them so they don't create a distraction when I'm doing the class. And yes, Virginia, I do use a script, as I am easily distracted, and don't wish to repeat myself by ad-libbing too much.)

So perhaps the next challenge is to create 50 booklets - one for each class - with full documentation and pictures. May be -- after I tackle a new class for SUN and for Bardic Madness.

So you want to make a pilgrimage

The event was "Boar's Head - A Celebration of Travelers" (The gate was a viking ship and the site token was a pilgrim badge).  What else could I do but give advice to those who might want to undertake a pilgrimage?  The challenge was to present information about reasons for pilgrimage and equipment for the journey completely in persona. I had my scrip and staff, and badge-filled hat (borrowed from the Wife of Bath), so I could look like a pilgrim of 1284. But that wasn't enough.
What Kudrun didn't know, was that Karyn had a projector along, and could show slides of period pilgrims and shrines behind her back. This allowed presentation of things that would happen in Kudrun's future, such as the 1388 ordinance of Richard II allowing arrest of anyone claiming to be a pilgrim without the proper credentials, and Christopher Columbus vowing that a crew member would make a pilgrimage if they survived rough seas. I could display a map of the three pilgrimages imposed on a profligate priest that basically got him out of the Archbishop's hair for three years. I don't know if anyone noticed that the gent in his undies, asking, "Has anybody seen my tunic?" was holding a bar of soap. (He had sewn his money into his tunic... and then took it off for bathing.)
Not many subjects lend themselves to in-persona teaching as well as this one did, but I recommend it for SCA teachers. I don't know how students perceive it, but as teacher, I feel that it allows more immersion into the thought of the real middle ages. One is able to say, "We do this because of that" as opposed to "In period they thought this or that."