Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Day Two

Two days down. Day Two was a doozy.

The Honors Program has become a victim of its own success, in a way: so many students are now pursuing Distinction as a University Scholar that I'm finding it necessary to offer not one but two sections of HON 479 this term...and perhaps in (nearly?) every term for the indefinite future. Of course, by the time that I realized the need for a second section of the course (about halfway through last semester's advising period), it was really too late to find another instructor to teach that section, and besides, I'd prefer to have a single instructor for both sections, for consistency's sake. Of course, that meant that the instructor for the first section would also be the instructor for the second section, even if it meant (as it did) teaching a course over the normal load. Of course, that instructor is me.

Genius that I am, I scheduled the two sections to meet back-to-back, 100 minutes apiece with only ten minutes in between, every Tuesday and Thursday. Today was our first meeting. By the end of the first section my throat hurt, and by the end of the second I had nearly no voice: there are so many moving parts to this class that I've just got to spend much of the first class meeting pointing out just how all of those parts fit together and more in a meaningful way.

Throw in a minor student medical emergency, a pressing tech issue facing the school's student-run TEDx chapter (for which I'm the faculty adviser), various administrivia and bureaucratic bullshit, and a two-hour sojourn in Asheville Catholic School's gymnasium, where I helped a friend out as a middle-school science fair judge, and you've got a hell of a day. I'm sore-throated and brain-dead, and I'm tired as hell.

But I'm happy. I've got high hopes for this term. I feel like last semester gave me a good grip on 479, and I had a fantastic first meeting of Linear Algebra II yesterday (the 23 students in that class had five different instructors for Linear I!), a course which I'll be teaching from a nearly total project-based perspective.

Life is good.

1 comment:

Bret Benesh said...

I want to hear more about project-based linear II!