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:
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 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….