Hello, my name is Jana (Losey) Crenshaw and I have a confession to
make - I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I WANT TO BE WHEN I GROW UP!
Also, I am 45 years old (?!).
All of that said, I am an artist - THAT much is clear to me. And through this
life journey of being an artist, I have (at times) been a full time artist.
However, I have also been: a barista, a seamstress, a waitress, a terrible
salesperson, performance artist, carpenter, bulk mail specialist,
landscaper, sound designer, photographer, preschool teacher, properties
manager, clothing designer, babysitter, electrician, farmer, cook, hat
designer, secretary, composer, and massage therapist. I am currently in
the middle of my 4th mid-life crisis, and attempting to reinvent myself -
AGAIN! - that I may save further wear and tear on my body and still be able
to make a living.
Here are some snapshots of my past……
Performing Live - solo On Broadway - Squonk 2nd Solo Release - art by Tim Bradstreet
More confessions: I enrolled in the Young Audiences teaching studio to try and figure out if I think I might be able to be a teaching artist.
Even more confessions: I am ALREADY a teaching artist. At least, I have in the past few years been given enormous opportunities to BE a teaching artist…..most of which I (at times) hated, loved, and was completely exhausted by. In a (my) body which is increasingly NOT willing to do the physical labor I am so accustomed to, I need solutions, and I’m just not sure if teaching is it.
Confessions aside - the YA Studio was VERY inspiring to me, and gave me hope that I could not only improve the process and outcome of the teaching gigs I currently have, but allowed me to consider other options that might be available. After the TA Studio, I am seriously considering turning myself into a full-time teaching artist!
I learned so much during the TA studio — enough to make me confident that I can more carefully craft my lessons and be more effective. I learned skills for breaking lessons into smaller parts and ‘scaffolding’ them to lead students to a final revelation. And through the course of our 6 classes, I really developed an intrinsic sense of the rhythm of a lesson. I learned many tools for classroom management and brainstormed and developed activities to use within my lessons. I had realizations about why some things I had been doing didn’t work, and how I could adjust them to be more effective.
I have (in the past!) relied on my ability to turn on my inner “cheerleader” to get through classes. Now, I’m so excited to return to class with all these wonderful tools. I’m envisioning myself as a more effective teacher, who can do more after class than just take a nap! :)
This was a great group of artists to meet and explore with! I am hoping I get to see and possibly collaborate with all of them soon!