Leonardo DaVinci and the art of sight and sound

We are continuing to use DaVinci’s example to heighten our own awareness of our senses.  Focusing on sight we drew a picture of the renaissance man by looking at it upside down.  This way we could concentrate on re-creating each new line without worrying about our artistic skills. It turns out we had several students who were quite pleased with their talents in drawing and it was fun to hear their comments as they turned their drawing right-side up to take a look!  We found it fascinating how each drawing was completely unique to the individual’s way of “seeing.”

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Next we turned to the art of “listening.” We started with the sound of silence as we took a few minutes for meditation.  Some students loved these quiet minutes and found great peace while others found it hard to stay in a place of quiet and wanted to get back to being productive.  After a very thought-provoking discussion we listened to nine pieces of music including Gregorian Chants, classical, jazz and some heavy metal music from modern times. The students were asked to listen to the music for about one minute and then write down a few thoughts.  This time the discussion was even more fascinating.  Some loved the classical music saying that it invoked a feeling of peace, others didn’t particularly feel peaceful when listening to it.  Some were reminded of people and places as they gave attention to the various pieces.  Some were absolutely sure that heavy metal helps them focus better.

It was a wonderful experience and afterward five or six of the students stayed after class to have a hearty discussion about everything from music to video games to books.  It was inspiring and brilliant!  I can’t wait for our next conversation!


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