Tuesday, April 16, 2013

the last class you'll ever teach

A student asked me today what I would do or change, if I knew this was the very last class session I would ever teach.

I think those kinds of projections are problematic, since real situations are more complex and more exigent than imaginary scenarios, but it was still an interesting question. I said that I try to approach every class session as if it were the last class I would ever teach, and then said that wasn't fully true, but was around 86% true.

That's not out of self-satisfaction. I'm almost never satisfied with a class session. I also rarely have regrets or feel like an opportunity has gone by.

But I think he was really asking something else: what violations of protocol or ethical standards would I commit, or what final thought would I express? I'm a little hazier on this. I think I know some things I definitely would not do:

I would not get naked.
I would not give everyone an A.
I would not give anyone drugs.
I would not try to start an orgy.
I would not confess to any inappropriate thoughts or feelings, much.
I would not try to hurt anyone.
I would not cause tremendous amounts of physical damage to the classroom.

Given my career plans, my very last class will likely involve me keeling over. I'd probably play music I think people should hear.

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