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….

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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