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Following on our class discussion about incorporating the theory that we’ve read: I do feel like the bar has just been set much higher. I want to do a good job of teaching, and I had thought that just getting through this first semester with a cohesive strategy (co-opted entirely from the AB Guide) would be a good benchmark. Now, however, I feel like it’s necessary to incorporate all these ideas about giving my students tools to entire the discourse community, etc., etc. Our students in particular need this course to move on to more challenging courses, where they will be expected to write well. I want them to have a solid basis from which to move on, and after reading the theory, I feel like that will be impossible to provide them.

At least this first semester. One of my biggest problems with teaching this semester is that it all seems to be flying past with no time to consider what we’re doing. I frequently find myself making lesson plans just a day in advance, which works, but isn’t ideal. When that happens, I then realize at 4:00 that I need to make a handout for an assignment or something like that, but I don’t want to drop everything to go up to campus to do so. At that point, I’m left with the choice either to change the assignment or activity so that it won’t require a handout or to go spend my own money (again) to copy it (since I teach at 8:00).

I keep thinking that when the semester’s over, I’ll have time to organize, go back through lesson plans, think through places where I could’ve been more prepared, and so on. I hope that when December rolls around, I won’t be so exhausted that I’ll give up on that. I hate feeling unprepared, and teaching this semester feels like a very long exercise in dealing with unpreparedness. I’ll have more than a month off to reconsider and reorganize in December/January, and I’m really hoping to take advantage of that.

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