Friday, January 07, 2005

Why Am I... lazy? Faced with massive internal stress over the start of classes next week, why am I reading blogs and avoiding work? True, I am fairly well prepped for next week and perhaps even the following week (or at least the first couple of days of week 2). But last semester (which was my first semester here and first semester teaching full-time), I prepped like a banshee in the two weeks prior to the start of classes, feeling like I was ready for the first three to four weeks. And I still felt stressed.

Now, I am only ready for a week, two weeks tops, and I feel stressed but not frantic. I think part of my less-frantic feeling is that I am more accustomed to my abilities and to what I need to do to get prepped each week.

But that doesn't change the fact that I should be prepping right now.

I have three classes this semester. I am supposed to only be teaching two, but because of the departmental constraints with which we're currently working, I am teaching three (next year, I'll be 3/2). Of thosse three classes, one is a repeat from last semester. On that one (screenwriting), I learned a lot, and I really want to get better. But I don't feel like I have made adequate use of my time to do that. I made some adjustments (I taught last semester primarily from a colleague's syllabus and notes, with a few of my own additions).

The other two courses are both entirely new to me. One of them is a production course that I'll be teaching again. The other is a history (of film) course that I likely won't be responsible for in the future (new colleague coming on board in the fall will probably be teaching it). That one is so comprehensive that I am intimidated by my own gaps in film history knowledge.

Fortunately, the same generous colleague who provided me with screenwriting notes has also blessed me with all of his film history lectures (and PowerPoints). I had planned on doing more extensive prep for this course, but if I'm not teaching it in the future? Well, there's quality of life issues to consider. I could spend weeks prepping for just this course -- and when I say weeks, I mean doing that and nothing else, 9-5.

I think I'll put more time into the courses I'll be teaching again and again. Of course, this raises the obvious question: why exactly am I wasting time reading your blogs and writing in mine?

Which brings us round to where we started.


At 12:35 PM, Blogger New Kid on the Hallway said...

To give me something to read when I'm reading and writing blogs and not doing MY work? ;-)

At 7:43 PM, Blogger TerminalMFA said...

Well, yes, there's always that. Glad I could help someone else's procrastination efforts :-)


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