How the on-line classes are going

I am teaching fully on-line this term, and it’s going OK.

Preparing video lectures (for Intro Logic) has not come naturally. My usual approach in Logic is to pose problems and work through them in ways that are responsive to student suggestions. It involves a lot of preparation, but the actual lecture is only loosely adapted from what I prepared. What I write on the chalkboard rarely appeared verbatim in my notes. There is no back-and-forth now, though, and I have to anticipate what comments can meet students where they are without stretching out into unbearable dithering.

My Philosophy of Art class meets in real-time, so I don’t need to plan quite as much. Face to face, I’d use the projector for images of artworks but put all of the philosophy on the whiteboard. For Zoom meetings, though, everything that I want on the board needs to be on the slides. It puts things on rails more than my usual style.

There have been numerous times when I’ve been on the cusp of pulling my hair out— metaphorically speaking— but there’s been exactly one moment when something cool happened that couldn’t have happened in a regular-issue, face-to-face class.1

  1. To be fair: There have been some other positive moments, and I have a great bunch of students this semester. It’s just that the other high points are ones that could have happened regardless of being on-line.

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