Monday, January 14, 2008
Glass left in a beach
I have probably committed a grave error, assigning Ander Monson's Neck Deep to my freshman class: a book filled with essays of wild shape and stance (the first is a several pages long outline). Predictably, they screamed this cannot be! An essay, that is. They are so afraid to not get it that it causes them to do exactly that. Once you give them permission to struggle, to work a little bit, with a text, suddenly their little heads bloom. For me, teaching isn't dumping vast stores of factage on students; it's really about nudging and cajoling and arm twisting. Little victories are the order of each day. It's maddening, at times, but fun too, if you have a perverse sense of the order of things. And I guess I do.