I love all of my
children classes the most
Today is the day! My learning theory class begins! I love teaching learning theory. I love it the most! It’s my favorite class to teach! I always get excited by the class on the first day – and why not? It’s learning theory! Fascinating stuff. Explains so much of how the human world works.
I get that I perhaps shouldn’t be so excited. It’s a required 5000-level graduate course. Most (all?) students take it because they’re required to. It’s not the course they’ve all dreamed of taking for years, at least not when they enroll. I just hope that by the end they’ve grown to find the topic as mesmerizing and useful as I do.
Each year when the fall term begins I think about what a blessing it is to teach a course that I love so much. I know that the “basic” courses are often not deemed so fun to teach, and that faculty can find them boring (especially if the topic is very familiar, to the point where they can no longer muster up some enthusiasm for introducing it to a room full of students who are only there in order to fulfill a program requirement).
Learning theory. Sigh. Swoon. Favorite course.
Until … well, on Friday my Internet Inquiry course begins. That class is so much fun for me to teach. Maybe that’s my favorite course? It’s a great opportunity to explore and brush up on some of the research methods and topics that are germane to my own scholarship, and to share this area of scholarship with students. It’s hard to believe that this class really counts as teaching. I’d probably do most of the course sessions as workshops – extras – for interested students in the college if it came to it (well, and if I had time). [Note to administrators: No, I do not have time to teach a freebie. If I teach this course, it really does have to count as part of my officially assigned duties. Even if I like it so much that I would want to teach it anyway.]
Since I’m confessing things in general …. OK, I admit it, I love both of my Fall courses, but I just finished teaching two amazing courses this summer. My course on learning analytics is such a great opportunity to play with data and to catch up on the data world in general. I confess, I tie in analytics from other fields, too, because there’s so much cool stuff going on with analytics in general these days. And then there’s my Web 2.0/Social Media course. It flows nicely after the analytics course, and then right before the Internet Inquiry course. The three courses put me on a teaching path that runs through half of the year and provides ample opportunity for meaningful concurrent scholarly exploration.
Oh, and then there are my Spring courses …
Hmm. I guess the point is that I really love teaching, and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to teach courses in areas that relate closely to my scholarship. As a colleague often says: This is the best job.