I’ve been predicting that my 9:35 am class was going to be the easy/fun one, and the 2:20 class was going to be the difficult one.
The 9:35 am class filled up during early registration. That means, I think, that mostly honors students (with priority registration) got into the class. They should be easy, right?
The 2:20 class, on the other hand, didn’t get created until after almost everyone was registered. I figured I probably got a lot of students who had problems or bars on their registration (academic probation?) or who just put things off until the last minute.
How are we wrong? In the 9:35 am class, I had 4 absent (out of 20). I had at least another 4 who were notably late, two who I didn’t even let sign in for the day. In the second class, there were half as many tardy and absent. Guess which class is looking better now?
What went well?
- Having students introduce each other went well.
- I was surprisingly good with names today.
- Talking about classes we liked/disliked, why we disliked them, and how this affected us/our behavior was productive.
- Lots and lots of students participated.
- I still am pleased with my little list of things to do from my last post, with one additional item added at the end:
- Show up on time for class.
- Bring a smile or a kind word for someone in our class every day.
- Stay in the classroom the entire class period.
- Use class time productively for our class work.
- Be professional.
What didn’t go so well?
- I don’t feel like I did a good job of introducing the syallabus.
- I had a brain-seizure on the class ending time in the morning class. First I was going to let them go early, then I ended up keeping them 5 minutes late.
- I didn’t get through my outline on “What Is Mathematical Modeling” in either class; I didn’t start it at all in the second.
- I didn’t talk up the writing center.
What do I want to make sure I do next time?
- I want to say, “I am happy to see you,” to my students.
- Go over prerequisites! Every once in a while I get someone in there who doesn’t have them; best to fix that now.
- Questions on the syllabus?
- Go over what is due soon and where to find it.
- Talk up the writing center.
- Talk up the amount of work required for this class! Scare a few off. This is not a blow-off class.
- Finish the outline on what is mathematical modeling.
- Give a LaTeX lesson so students can do my LaTeXercises and get to work on their first writing assignment.
In other unexciting just-do-it kind of news, I went for a nice walk today after getting home from work.