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.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

What Was The Assignment?

During my last public speaking class session (the one I held before I took off the last day for the Jewish Holidays), I discussed small groups and group presentations. I explained that small groups usually come together to address a problem in society. They do not like the way something is being done and they examine the problems and possible solutions, ultimately coming up with a recommendation. I even explained that sometimes the group may decide that, despite not liking the way things are currently being done, it might decide that the current solution is, in fact, the best alternative.

The assignment I gave to the class, to be completed on the session that I would not be there, was to break themselves into 4 small groups, pick a topic (something they thought was wrong in society that needed changing) and begin researching the topic. I got a call from one of my students on the day this assignment was supposed to be done, the day I was taking off for the holiday. A message explained that the students did not know what they were supposed to do so they were just skipping class that day.

I come back to what I said in yesterday’s post. If they would actually stop talking for a moment and listen, they would have known what the assignment was. If I was not clear, questions should have been asked in class and they should have had a clear understanding of what they needed to do in my absence. I keep hoping that once they get their grades on the first graded assignment, I can start reining some of them in as they will start to realize that their constant talking and lack of attention actually has an impact on their grades. Time will tell.