Teaching as an adjunct can be a lot of fun. It is also challenging. As I have encountered a number of situations, I realize such a blog can be helpful, both to me and to others.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

A Lot Of Speeches

I am about to enter one of the busiest, or perhaps in a sense most difficult parts of the college semester. I know it seems strange to read that considering the semester is just over a week old, but here is where things are.

Every semester, the first formal speech the students have to give is one where they introduce themselves to the rest of the class by revealing some aspect of their personality. It is a non-graded speech, except for the fact that it counts in class participation so they cannot just skip it or plan on “winging” it.

I liked the students to know where I feel they are starting. They should know what I feel their strengths and weaknesses are. As a result, each student will get a full critique from me. Usually, in any given speech day there are no more than eight speaker and that is already a lot. I try to keep it to around six. Since this speech, however, is much shorter, many more students speak each session. I also try and get the students the critique back by the next class session. Sometimes I fail, but I try. Again, especially with the first speech, I want to get it back to them ASAP so they can formulate a game plan for the rest of the semester.

My 55 minute class has 22 students. Approximately half of them will speak tomorrow and the other half on Friday. My Tuesday, Thursday class is one hour and 20 minutes and has 13 students. All of them will be speaking on Thursday. That means that I will be listening to and critiquing 35 speeches over 3 days with the intent of having all critiques handed back my Monday.

I like these speeches, I just wish I did not have to critique them. Usually I enjoy giving feedback to students but this is just a little too much.

Oh well, I will survive… I do every semester.