Saturday, August 29, 2009

First Class

was a failure just because I didn't expect the students to be so mindless as not to leave me place at the table. When I got to the class, my first thought was to say that since I didn't have any place to sit, they can manage the class on their own, bye-bye.

And I should have done that. It would have been much more effective than sitting down in the corner, desperately trying to get to my notes and lesson plan, and mumbling things about how I object to eating and texting in class.

I hope I was weird enough to scare some of them off so that we can actually have a normal number of people on Monday.

I need a crash course in being serious and scary.

Advice! Advice! Please!


Kim said...

I'd go more for the scary/eccentric than serious. The professors who I liked the most but also at times found strangely intimidating were the eccentric ones.

You can also just take the table away from them? Move some chairs away from the table and sit in one of them? Not sure if you will need the table for every class, but it could keep them on their freshmen toes and hesitant where to sit for classes? And it's their first semester so they might want to be good students so will do anything to get in teacher's good graces?

Misiula said...

Thanks, Kim. We sit around a large table, so I don't think I can manipulate furniture -- it's just not physically possible. I'll have to manipulate people and I don't consider myself manipulative. Sigh.

Bowleserised said...

I think you need to watch some films from the 1930s-1950s and find a tough broad/dame and then channel them. Hepburn or Davis or Dietrich might do the trick.

Misiula said...

That's a brilliant idea!

You know, right before that first class I was reminded of a "Friends" episode -- the one in which Ross puts on a quasi-British accent. At my first university I got trained in RP pronunciation to the degree that it felt like the idealized and unrealistic accent was speaking through me rather than that I was speaking it.

My accent changed when I first went to the US and not so much due to any kind of emotional preference but opportunities to interact with native speakers.

However, that first day of class I felt like trying to go back to those pronunciation classes -- so I could get a stronger persona in front of the students.

Of course, I didn't do it. It would have been a disaster.