A Cartoonist Teacher Has An Excellent Approach


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This is some excellent work by a teacher...

When award-winning cartoonist and author Lynda Barry distributes her hand-drawn syllabus to UW-Madison students on the first day of class, she intentionally skips introductions. In this environment, a student's academic major, age and even name matter little compared to the topics delved into as a group.

Students, both undergraduate and graduate from diverse disciplines, join Barry to examine larger questions about why we yearn to create things, solve problems and explore meaning in the world through science, visual art and writing. The experience is anything but "being lectured at

You must see the pages of her students notes in the article...

Our reverence for cartoonist Lynda Barry, aka Professor Chewbacca, aka The Near Sighted Monkey is no secret. We hope someday to experience the pleasure of her live teachings. ’Til then, we creep on her Tumblr page, following with homework assignments, writing exercises and lesson plans intended for students who take her class, “The Unthinkable Mind,” at the University of Wisconsin.

And now, those course materials have been collected as Syllabus: Notes from an Accidental Professor, an old fashioned, tangible book. It’s like a paper MOOC!

(Yes, we know, MOOCs are free. This will be too, if you add it to your holiday wish list, or insist that your local library orders a copy.)


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