If you want to teach photography to anybody, put a camera in his hand and tell him to go shoot pictures.
That's the way my father taught me. He handed me a camera and said, "If you break this, I'll break you!" He kicked me in the ass and told me not to come back until I had shot the entire roll.
That's the way I taught my nephew, except without the threats or the ass kicking.
You know, even when a person wants to learn how to fly an airplane (even if only a Cessna) he gets to take the controls at least part of the time. The instructor handles the takeoff and landing, of course.
The point is, that to learn anything, the student has to be involved. You're right. If you force people to sit in a classroom they aren't going to want to learn. If that's the way people are teaching photography, no wonder the general public think it's hard.
I often tell people, if they want to learn photography, they can learn the basics in an afternoon. I've never had anybody except Daniel take me up on the offer, though.