Thursday, August 28, 2008

already behind? that was fast...

So the semester started on Monday and already I feel like I've lost a week. Several of my friends commented (and I wholeheartedly agreed) on Wednesday that the semester was three days old and we were already behind.

Holy crap.

Ok, not really, but that is how it felt.

As for me, I'm doing something typically-Julie with regards to my schedule/load. I am:
* teaching three classes: 2 sections of English 101 (see syllabus) and 1 section of English 402 (see syllabus).
* taking two seminars
* shadowing one prof in an upper-division undergrad class
* and then there's the whole job thing

I can answer any questions the new people have about how things work, etc, with the exception of "how many classes should I take" or "how much sleep do you get" and so on. I tell them that I am absolutely not the person to ask that particular type of question.

I admit—and I am still quite happy about it although it makes me shake my head in disbelief at myself—that I asked for three classes. Actually, I dropped a big hint in the office when I said (before the semester) that I would be happy to teach a 3/0 this year instead of a 2/1 because that would give me a semester plus a summer of unfettered exam studying (unfettered except for the typical fettering of two seminars in the spring and my job) for the fall. I knew we were in a little bit of a bind because of some last-minute hiring away (or quitting) of some people who were on the schedule, so I said "hey, you know..." and thus reminded anyone who would listen that I'm a bit of a freak.

I'm a lot more comfortable teaching my 402 than I am the 101, even though Toria and I spent all summer planning it out. It's not the content that I am worried about—it's the people. I haven't taught 18-year-olds for a year and a half; I've taught juniors and seniors since I've been here. Ok, truthfully I'm not even all that worried about it. It's just that some of them seem so very young in the classroom. I say "in the classroom" to differentiate them from "on paper" because I asked them to write a little in-class thing and some of them were funny and thoughtful. Actually, most of them were. But the in-class behavior of some is just...not what I'm used to. After everyone settles down from this first week I'll nip some of that in the bud, but still...I made a mental note to myself about a few things I didn't think I'd have to note.

But at least I know approximately 30% of their names after two class meetings. In my other class, not so much yet. I have a total of 77 students and I think that my brain will explode trying to remember everyone.

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