Saturday, August 25, 2007

Students! I've taught my first students!

I've got a lot of emails to write. I've been planning this for a couple of months but the time is upon us when I finally feel like a scuba instructor. And now I want to send emails to all my past instructors to let them know that I'm thankful for all they've taught me.

Last night I took my first two Open Water students to their first pool session. In a few weeks they'll be certified as PADI Open Water (OW) Scuba Divers. And they'll be my first "certs", a major step in my diving career.

I've been a bit nervous this week. I didn't have the time I wanted to prepare but did read a review quite a bit. I think no amount or preparation would have made me feel truly calm and prepared. But the moment we hit the pool, I felt like an instructor. We went through the processes that are now familiar to me. The skills we covered were the first and simplest and we all did a good job with them. Underwater I was comfortable and truly enjoying everything.

But it was the teaching and briefing that shocked me. The words flowed out and they were mine. But the voice that said them was the sum total of the voices of my instructors. The people who trained me were all right there last night, and in the echos of the indoor pool my voice was precisely theirs.

There has always been an incredible confidence and sense of authority in every lesson my instructors have ever given. And dive students, especially brand new (still dry behind the ears) dive students stand and listen like sponges ready to absorb the whole pool. They're too afraid to miss important information, and desperately excited to get into the water at the same time. And last night, after a lot of help from a lot of great people, two students stood at the pool and listened to me. And I took them diving.

I finally feel like an instructor. And I really enjoy it!


quilly said...

Congrats, Morgan! I know what you mean by being surprised at how well you did your first time teaching. I felt exactly that same way!

I Dive At Night said...

I should give thanks also to my friend Adam who assisted by playing "tank slave" and helping as my buddy to demonstrate skills.

I've taught before and have few regrets but I've never enjoyed teaching as much before as I do this.

J. D. said...

Morgan.....You "sound" really excited and happy about this accomplishment and you certainly have a right to.

Funny you said that the words just began to flow, because your Dad always said, that if you know your subject you could talk endlessly about it.

Congratulations to you, dear Morgan and to your students. As with flying...every landing you can walk away from is a good landing. And, with diver instruction...every student that is still breathing at the end of the lesson is a student well taught:-) hee-hee! Love.....Mom

Minka said...

WEll, they lived to tell the tale :)
Yous ound so excited and you should. I remember my first day of teaching. 27 19 year olds and they were listening to my words, most of them taking notes and some shuttign up when I smilingly force dtehm to be silent. It was a wonderful experience.

I can almost feel liek one of those students. Standing there, lookign and listening-to not miss a vital bretahign information, yet eager to get into teh water.
I can't wait!

I Dive At Night said...

Mom, I "sound" happy? :-P

Minka, name the time, I'll bring the tanks. ;-)

Theresa said...

Congratulations! It sounds like an exhilarating experience, and I'm sure you make a great teacher.

We were just in Holland, up near Groningen, but we never made it to Amsterdam. Your mom left me a comment on my blog, but I saw it too late, it would have been really nice to meet you.

neva said...

congratulations, Morgan! such a nice way to help others find the same passion for diving that you have. i'm sure you're a wonderful instructor, and i wish you all success with this new "venture"! ; )