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View Diary: Is teaching an art or a science? (24 comments)

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  •  Mama B used to wonder why I was always so (7+ / 0-)

    exhausted after a day of "just teaching" - until she started teaching English.

    Last year I had pneumonia for a month before I realized I was actually sick; I just thought I had a cold, and maybe my allergies were kicking up. Took me two months to recover.

    I don't know if teaching is an art or a science, or both, or more. What I do know is that it takes everything you've got, and never lets up.

    I did have one particularly exciting piece of feedback a few days ago. One of my students, who fought and struggled tooth and nail to get through basic Cartesian linear graphing (just to give you a baseline), took a class from me a year ago that I called Basic Number Theory - actually something that I could use to change their perspective on math, and maybe some practical, fun little tools.

    She currently is taking a class on GIS, and the class had someone from one of the state universities come down to help out on field work - I believe a grad student. While in the field, the helper had to do some kind of calculation, and pulled out a notebook. My student, using some of the tricks from the number theory class, worked it out mentally, gave the answer, and got a response of "Just a second till I work this out."

    When the helper finally arrived at the same result as my student, she just stared and asked, "How did you do that?"

    I was walking on air all day after I heard that story.

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