The above is what one of my students said when they walked into my class on the first day of school. I just laughed... I was already prepared for that comment. I'll be 25 in 19 days and I'm teaching an introductory composition course at the university where I'm finishing my master's degree. Even though I'm almost 25 I'm still mistaken for a college freshman or high school student on a regular basis. At first I thought my age and look was going to be a major hindrance but I've decided to use it to my advantage. On the first day of school when I introduced myself I said the following: "My name is Ms. _______, and I will be 25 next month. That's both good and bad for you. It's good because unlike a lot of your teachers I still remember being a freshman in college and all the fear and anxiety that comes with it; not to mention we will watch movies and listen to music that is relevant to you all. It's bad because I know every single excuse or game you will try to run on me... so don't even bother."
After getting through the very scary first day of class I've realized that this is really what I want to do. It's only been 2 weeks but I love planning what I'm going to discuss in class the next day. I love the fact that as a young Black woman in the classroom I'm showing my young Black female students that the goal is achievable and so real. I love the fact that I have the ability to shape the first year experience for so many of them. For most of my students I was the very first teacher they interacted with on a collegiate level... I teach Mon, Wed, and Fri from 9:00 to 9:50 am.
The first 2 weeks have been really great so far but this coming week is crucial... so far we've been doing a lot of introductory stuff but this week I'll introduce the art of "personal narrative." We'll also start the first of many grammar presentations... I'm going first so they know what to expect and what I'm looking for...
Alright I need to go grade the practice Regent's exams they took this past Friday... keep your eyes open for more frequent updates.