16 images Created 23 Jan 2015
Letters from Children
Once I started teaching in schools, and sharing my adventures and photos with children, I discovered that I had natural teaching skills that were fired up by my wild experiences in the natural world. It provided me with a great means of reconnecting with those amazing experiences and using the inspiration I had gained to inspire the children. It also provided me with a stage to utilise my artistic abilities that had been neglected for much of my life. The enthusiasm and great interest of the children really helped to galvanise my creativity again, and it has always been so rewarding for me to share my artwork with them, and to see their results that I have been able to elicit with my teaching abilities; many teachers have informed me that even children with serious learning difficulties have been able to complete an art project for the first time. One of my greatest rewards for being able to inspire and connect with school children so well has been all of the letters and drawings that they have done for me. I have so many that I have been unable to part with, and this is just a small sample that is representative of their comments and pictures. When I first started teaching in a large number of schools in the USA I became known as “the Whaleman” and sometimes the “the Whale-Dude”, and the Whaleman sobriquet continued on into the schools in England. It was always very rewarding to be recognised by children out of school and hear them say, “Hey, it’s the Whaleman”!