Precious Moments of Teaching

teacher at blackboardMy class is worried about me. Isn’t that something? During our last class they wanted to know what I was teaching next semester. When I told them I didn’t have an assignment yet, they couldn’t believe it. There were lots of puzzled looks around the classroom, so I explained my situation.

I told them I was an “adjunct” instructor, which meant that the college hired me on an “as needed” basis. Because the full time staff has first crack at the slots that are open, I’m considered after they are assigned.  And because I don’t have my Master’s degree in English, the sections I can teach are very limited.

They raised voices of protest. “Well that’s the dumbest things I’ve ever heard.” “That’s just not fair! “I wish all my teachers were like you!”  “Some times college is so stupid!” And and on and on.

I stood and listened as my heart soared. It was like receiving a standing ovation after a good performance! They appreciated what I’ve given them this semester! And believe me, I had doubts. I’ve seen this class of 22 whittle down to 12 student, and  I’ve seen more “deer in the headlights” stares on their faces than I have in all my other combined classes.

But the ones who really want an education are still left, and it’s their opinions I care about. After dismissal, I got two hugs. I wonder how many other instructors get that! Too bad I can’t tell the Dean of the Department how much my students appreciate my efforts, huh?

Oh well. If I don’t get a teaching assignment next semester there must be a reason. Perhaps I’ll win a grant for my novels or stories and can devote my time to just writing. That would be very exciting. Almost as good as a hug from an appreciative student.

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