My first week and a half of teaching have been both rewarding and frustrating. I have some great students and am excited about the classes. The Comp. class I have of course taught many times before but am always tweeking, and this semester am including the archives for the first time. I'm thrilled to be doing Art, Politics and Protest class for the first time.
On the other hand, as it seems happens every semester, there have been a number of logistical frustrations. The bookstore didn't fill the order for my composition class. The projector in one of my classrooms was broken and the backup didn't arrive. I had hoped to do a laptop order on a few days but didn't realize you can't do this in the C building. It seems these are not only personal frustrations but very often make it difficult to present a clean, organized class to students in the opening weeks of class.
Part of the challenge is rooted in the computer lab issue. When I teach a cluster, I ask for a computer lab one day a week - two hours out of six. That seems like the perfect ratio for me. In a four or three hour stand alone class, I'm reluctant to give up the limited time that we have - I like talking, having them talk. The blogs seems like a supplement - it doesn't take the place of a discussion that gives them a real handle on the readings/assignments before they do their thoughts.
As a result of all this, they're setting up their blogs outside of class, and we're off to a bit of a slower start than some of you all. However, I'm still excited about the work we'll be doing & exchanging ideas.
My course blogs are:
http://www.thesquattingtoadlaguardia.blogspot.com/ (Composition with a Work theme)
http://artpoliticsprotestlaguardia.blogspot.com/ (Art Politics, Protest)
Each will have student blogs linked as they get set up. Feel free to comment, link, and so forth.