This work probes the topic of teaching as a performing art, focusing on the role of teachers in galvanizing an audience - their students. It argues that teachers will better engage learners if they are prepared in the "artistry" of doing so. The author sees teachers as actors and thus uses the traditions of stage performance to inspire ways to foster connections between teachers and students. Sarason elucidates how the rehearsal processes actors undergo and the direction they receive, for example, would be similarly beneficial for educators. Recognizing that implementing his ideas would require a profound rethinking of teacher training programmes, Sarason urges why they are crucial to excellence in education.
Seymour Sarason is Professor of Psychology Emeritus at Yale University. In 1962, he founded and directed the Yale Psycho-Educational Clinic, one of the first research and training sites in community psychology. Fields in which he has made special contributions include mental retardation, culture and personality, projective techniques, teacher training, anxiety in children, and school reform. His numerous books and articles reflect his broad interests. He has received awards from the American Psychological Association and the American Association on Mental Deficiency.