Saturday, August 23, 2014

So far, so good

Classes have started. We had our first full week. In general, things look good, even though I'm teaching an overload.

Though there is one in every group. I received not one but two panicked e-mails from a student detailing all of their current Life Problems (none of which would rate an accommodation from the Disabilities office, so....) and that those things are going to be the Reasons that I have to do stuff for them, or make changes and adjustments.

And it just makes me all so tired. When's the point that I get to tell someone, "Suck it up; you're an adult now. If you don't want to be an adult please apply to someone who is, hopefully a family member, and see if they'll take care of you for the rest of your life."

Part of the reason for my tiredness is that I have a lot of stuff going on in my personal life right now that are just "suck it up and deal" moments. So my sympathy right now is kind of limited.

The other thing is, and I think students forget this: I have a total of five classes I am teaching. Between those five classes I have 115 students. That is far fewer than most profs in this nation but still, 115 people is a LOT of people to learn the names of. And it would be impossible to treat each one with the degree of specialness this person is requesting.

Yes, I am happy to do things like arrange for a 'quiet room' for testing for someone with a demonstrated disability. Yes, I can arrange to get a special chair for the person who's had back surgery. No, I have no problems with the person who has hip trouble sitting in the back so they can stand up periodically when it gets to bothering them. But I draw the line at playing emotional counselor to someone who probably needs to call their mom or their sister or their best friend.

And thank goodness I don't have the darn Readings class any more; that turned into a cluster fast after we decided to do it as a hybrid class. (it's a one-credit class, which SHOULD mean one hour of work and interaction per week, but the students never took that seriously. With the hybrid format I tried to force that and it wound up with a situation where I cared more about getting the class work done than my students did, which is generally a line someone teaching should not cross.)

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