Category Archives: Education

Up In The Air

My “career” for this coming semester is completely uncertain. Through two different institutions there is the possibility that I will be teaching six different classes five days per week.

It is also possible that I will be teaching nothing.

I have gone from an unknown to someone people think is worth having on the back burner. Not yet valuable enough to be permanently, certainly needed.

The All Things French class (which I like to abbreviate “ATF” while giggling, since our group of well-seasoned ladies is the exact opposite of the mostly young male ATF agents as portrayed on TV, wearing their dark windbreakers and busting into a drug dealer’s home with guns blazing) is almost a certain go, as I will have many return students who say they are bringing friends. I’ve come up with the syllabus for that one, chose the films, planned the conversation topics. Now I want to come up with a class packet with basic stuff we’ll be referring to throughout the class. Last time it was just a lot of handouts, and I think the ensuing disorganization discourages people.

I’m going to add some pages to the Conversational Spanish packet, then I’ll be ready to roll with that class. If it makes, it will be the sixth time I’ve taught it, so I pretty much have it down.

The Spanish for Health Care Providers class will have a textbook, and it will be really basic stuff, so there should be little to no planning for that one, other than coming up with extra activities, which I can simply steal from the conversation class. (I say steal, but I developed all the material, so don’t call the police just yet!)

The budgeting class I have down, pretty much. A one day seminar of three hours. I’d like to come up with some new stuff for that, just because it’s a lot of droning on about stuff that doesn’t really help the people who have to take the class. They have no money to budget, and often are not in the class through any financial errors of their own. Shall I go over how and why to have a bank account to the woman who is displaced, escaping with her children from an abusive relationship? Or the old man trying to live on his pension while simultaneously paying to have his stroked wife in a care facility? There has to be something more helpful I can do.

The two credit Spanish classes at the University will be time consuming, but simple in that all materials are provided. I just follow the plan and teach the material, hopefully imparting to the young people along the way a love of the Spanish language and the people who speak it.

And so I wait and make my little preparations. It is irritating not to know, but on the bright side, I can fantasize about what I’ll do with all my free time, should I end up having a lot.