I spent 20 minutes or so when I got home tonight julienning some butternut squash to toast in the oven. I wanted to use it as a crispy garnish for risotto. I tossed it with olive oil, sage, salt and pepper, and put it in the oven with a timer to check and turn it in 10 minutes, knowing that I would have to attend to it closely so that it would cook evenly. Things happened... the phone rang, the neighbors stopped by, and I watched my squash, truly I did, but not carefully enough, because the last time I checked, some were perfect, some were still a bit limp, and a good bit were too done to
Maybe that's a good analogy for teaching: All the shreds of squash start out roughly the same-- they are in the same pan, in the same oven, but they don't bake evenly. Who knows why? You have to stay focused and keep checking and making adjustments so that all the individuals who make up the collective are well-prepared; otherwise it's all no good.