I had hoped to write more about my teaching experience while it was happening, but as go so many good intentions, I couldn’t quite manage it. Part of this is because I forget, in between my ‘normal’ 5 year cycles of teaching, how much time it takes to do at all, much less do well. As a result, I really haven’t blogged at all since the end of March, when I started on my latest teaching adventure, and I’m sure a lot of people thought I’d dropped off a cliff. Well, I did, sort of, but it wasn’t really a bad experience.

As I mentioned in my previous post, I was very happy about the support supplied by the UW iSchool—a group very experienced in helping virtual teachers and students have the best experience possible. This, and the high caliber of the students, made the experience overall the best one I’ve had. There were parts of it I really enjoyed, primarily the discussions with the students, their willingness to start new discussions and read widely about the topics at hand, and their ability to think about issues that they’d not really encountered before. Their interest, curiosity and enthusiasm kept me willing to work through my screencast software problems (“Oh yes, this is a known bug, we expect it to be fixed in subsequent releases.”). There were the inevitable problems keeping up the grading on their assignments—my weekends evaporated in the face of piles of writing I needed to read then supply feedback about.

But, I realized again that I’m a sprinter, not a marathon runner (odd as that analogy may seem to anyone who knows me or has seen me in front of a room). I still think I’m better at the one shot workshop than the semester or quarter course of 10-15 weeks. Not that I’d never do it again (never say never), but it’s hard work, and not well paid, so I’d have to give it some thought before jumping in again. And I’m thinking about a new workshop I’d like to develop, and when I do, I might see who’d be interested in hosting it.

By Diane Hillmann, June 25, 2010, 4:29 pm (UTC-5)

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