Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Why'd I sign up for this?

There are many reasons I gave up teaching.

Like having freshmen roll their eyes at me isn’t enough reason.

But, honestly, I’m not a very good teacher. Especially if you’re not an enthusiastic student. I lack patience; I abhor willful stupidity (I have no problem with ignorance. Ignorance is simply a lack of knowledge and the reason teachers exist. Stupid is a state of mind and I can’t fix stupid.). I often talk just to hear my own head rattle, and try to avoid talking about things I don’t enjoy very much.

I also fell easily into that “what I’m saying is important” trap that students find really annoying. I really wanted one of those shirts that said, “If I’m talking, you should be taking notes.” :-)

Add in the fact I don’t like grading papers and the administrative BS drove me up the wall, and you see why teaching probably wasn’t a good career choice for me. Hanging out with my computer has been much better for my mental health, and my family appreciates not listening to me whine about students.

So why then, am I booked for four presentations this summer and an online class?

The full truth of this just hit home when I turned in the new book Saturday. I’ve got a lot of prep work to do for these presentations. Outlines, Powerpoint presentations, handouts… What was I thinking?

Now, the issue of unenthusiastic students isn’t a problem. Thankfully, all the people I’ll be speaking to this summer are folks who want to be there and honestly believe I might have something worthwhile to tell them. (How refreshing a change from 18-year-olds who know everything.)

It’s good promotion, I know. And it’s not like I have a fear of public speaking or anything. I just kinda wish now that I hadn’t agreed to all five of these. That’s what happens when the requests don’t come in together and come in months in advance. I lost track of how many I’d agreed to and hey, that’s months away…

At least I don’t have to do a syllabus. Or grade papers. Or deal with administrators. Or put up with eyeball rolling freshmen. Just gotta keep looking at the positive, right?

At least the book is in. Hopefully the revisions won’t be too extreme. The packing up of the house and the accompanying paperwork is coming along. I can plan presentations while I strip ugly wallpaper and paint, right?


So, is anyone else in the “Why did I volunteer for that” hole right now? Or am I alone because I don’t know how to say no?



PM's Mother said...

You also need a T-shirt that says "What Part Of 'NO' don't you understand?"

Christine said...

Just remember this when you are asked to do it all again next year. I try to limit my volunteer duties -- but that's what happens when one reaches her forties. Too tired to do it all--really too tired.

Smarty Pants said...

Don't forget our workshop, too. Gotta start on that... :(

Instigator said...

Um...you pulled me into the hole behind you. :-) Although, I didn't exactly jump up and down and protest.

4 presentations, 1 nationals workshop and 1 online workshop. Someone thought I knew what the hell I was doing and could explain it to others. Someone was smoking crack. Should be interesting.


Playground Monitor said...

The little parts don't seem like much until you add them together and the sum is 4 presentations and an online class. You keep a desk calendar, don't you? I do, but it's a weekly kind. It's easy to look at just one week and think, "Oh I can do that. There's nothing else (or maybe only one other thing) going on that week." Then I flip to the pages that show the whole month and realize I have something every week that month. Sometimes it takes looking at the broader picture to keep from overextending myself.

Angel said...

I'm actually feeling guilty this morning for NOT volunteering. You see, we just changed our Write Out date from Thursday to Friday. THEN the kids come home with bowling field trip papers, both of them going on Fridays, separate Fridays. Sigh. They're only taking 2 parents and I am NOT signing up. I'm not. And I won't feel guilty about that. I WON'T.

Okay, I do feel guilty. But I'm still not going.


Kathy said...

You can always switch back, Angel. The third wheel won't mind. ~sigh~

Wow! You really have signed up to do a lot, PC. But then again, that's who you are. With wit and verve, you shall charm everyone who listens. You are a great speaker. That's why we like to let you do the talking all the time. ;)

Pick one thing at a time. Get one project preparation done and then move on. Things will seem less daunting then.

word verif: dermenam
(I'm sure this means something very ludricrous.)

LA said...

I DID decline the "opportunity" to head up a big fiber conference, but I have offered my services to help (in a small way) the lady that will be in charge. It was the least I could do, and it will be an exciting conference. Sometimes you just have to say NO (and mean it!)

Problem Child said...

At least I'm not alone in my hole :-)

And I'm making progress. Today I packed. The move is the big thing coming up, so that has to be done!