Taking your own professional advice is tough: on teaching

This isn’t my first rodeo.

I’ve prepped plenty of new classes. Every time I do, though, I go through the same exercise. Where to start, what to include, what to exclude, how to structure the semester….

My desk starts to look like this:

Messy desk

The desk before organization….

Then, my mind starts spinning.

I stare blankly at the stack of books on my desk.  I would have included a picture except that I’m read quite a few e-books lately. A snapshot of my blank screen is not so exciting.

I draft the class and the planning reaches a fever pitch. Then I blow up my syllabus and it looks like this:

When your desk just isn't big enough....

When your desk just isn’t big enough….

When the planning moves from the desk to the floor, I have to take a break.

Not only have I been down this road before, I have also left myself a few breadcrumbs in case I feel lost. As I prep this new course, I’m looking back at some of my earlier reflections on teaching.

I have to remind myself that teaching a new course is exciting. This semester, I get the chance to teach a course that really connects sociology and education reform. It’s a great opportunity.  Still, teaching a new class is like starting a new job. You never quite know the ins and outs of the material or the students until you get started.  Starting a new job is nerve-wracking.

What me, panic? Never….

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About rglw

Sociologist mom writes for work and for pleasure.
This entry was posted in academia, education reform, higher education, lessons learned, procrastinating, productivity, schools, teaching, work and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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