Thursday, January 3, 2013

Grumpy Instructor Ahead

Trust me, college students, you’re not the only ones dreading the beginning of next semester.

I’ve been teaching online English classes at Brigham Young University-Idaho in Rexburg now for, what, a year and a half? Two years? Something like that. For the most part, I’ve enjoyed it. I have to confess that I’m an unremarkable instructor, one who’ll get you through the course (most likely) but also (very likely) be an instructor you’ll quickly forget. While I am taking measures to become better at what I do, part of me accepts that I won’t ever be a star instructor. So know that as you come in.

Last semester was pretty rough. Rough in that I had students who weren’t particularly motivated combined with stress at my full-time job where I became the sole technical writer on a pretty busy project, meaning I had less time at work to moonlight. That’s a good thing, because I shouldn’t be doing that anyway. Nevertheless. I’ll chalk last semester up as practice on being a rotten teacher. Things will be better now.

Or will they? Sometimes, like Balki here, I have to remind the Cousin Larry part of me that the students in my class are probably just waiting for the bus.

I also have to remind myself that as an instructor I can’t come into the semester with a bad attitude. If the instructor comes in looking gloomy, that’s going to rub off on the students very quickly. I’ve got to be a beacon of enthusiasm and jollity, which could in of itself be pretty annoying as well.

Yeah. Gunplay in a cartoon about school. And a bombing. Not too funny these days.

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