Vito Prosciutto: Teaching community college math on the road to a PhD.

Friday, December 05, 2003

I can't take it anymore 

I'm really frustrated with what's happening in the Saturday teaching class. I had such great expectations for these classes and it feels like a complete failure.

I just got the following e-mail:

I want to tell you that I don't understand any of the things you have been teaching us since I got transferred into your class. I haven't told this to you earlier because I thought that I can catch up on the proofs and everything else, but I found out now that I can't because today I tried doing the homework you assigned to us, but I'm having a lot of trouble with it and I can't do any of the problems.
Now to the students credit, she asked for extra help, but the big problem here is that it's been two weeks since the assignment was given. The homework has a short assignment listed for each day. So, she should have been doing a little something EVERY day. Instead she sends me this e-mail after midnight the morning of class. And this is typical of the class. I don't know where to begin in determining what's gone so wrong here.

I've decided to skip new material for tomorrow and we're going to try to consolildate the learning so far. Re-teach re-teach re-teach. I know it's not all my fault, but it still leaves me feeling like a failure that these kids are not learning. Frankly I'm almost ready to say that I'll not do this next semester. I just don't think that the goals of the program and the structure of the program are compatible and I'm not getting anywhere it seems. I'm a better teacher than the results I'm getting. These are better students than the results they're getting.

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