Thursday, September 01, 2005

Hiking Done, and Now for School

Having successfully hiked a 230-mile section of the AT through Massachusetts and Vermont (and having lost 10 pounds in the process -- YEAH ME!) I am back at school and in the thick of teaching classes. I'm basically teaching two classes this semester -- both English methods classes. The morning class is focusing on teaching writing at the secondary school level and is HUGE (for me, I mean). 31 students. Plus I'm co-teaching with a grad student, which is a new experience for me. So far we've had one incredibly hectic day, in which we were only able to get through half of what we had planned, and one lovely day (today) in which I was totally impressed with my students' work ethic and depth of thought. I do really love my job.

In the afternoons, I teach another English methods classes which focuses on teaching literature. This one is smaller, populated by my seniors who will begin their student teaching in the spring, and my post-bacs who already have degrees and are working on certification and getting some graduate credit. These folks are great as well, and so far things are going smoothly with that class. I'm sure some personality issues will crop up (they always do!) but it hasn't happened yet and that makes me happy.

I still have to come up with an essential question for my writing class, and I'm wavering between two:
1. How can I do a better job of merging my hiking self and my teaching self?
2. How can I do a better job of working with mentor teachers in the schools?

Neither of those questions is phrased exactly as I want it to be, but I'll keep working on it. I have until Tuesday.

Plus, the UW Cowboys play Florida on Saturday (can you say odds are against us?) and I'm excited about football season opening.

I know, I know, I'm an English teacher; why am I interested in football? I can't help it.

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