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?