Genius, pt. VII

While the author of “The Geography of Genius,” Eric Weiner, was in Florence, he met Eugene Martinez, a tour guide and art historian who told him “there was a lot of crap produced during the Renaissance.” The author disagreed when he heard that but then he agreed because he realized that Eugene meant that the geniuses of that time and place (and other times and places), made a lot of mistakes before they created masterpieces.

The author gave a simple reason for the many mistakes that geniuses like Edison and Picasso made: “The more shots you get at the target, the more likely you’ll eventually score a bull’s-eye, but the more misses you’ll accrue as well.”

Making mistakes is one of the things new students are afraid of doing and I don’t understand it because I am their teacher. If there is anyone who should know the mistakes they make, it is I. Actually, I need my students to make mistakes so that I know what they have to work on and how I can help them.

Mistakes are important in learning so I don’t think students should be embarrassed by their mistakes (as long as they’re learning from it). After all, even geniuses make mistakes.