Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Frozen in Time

So yesterday, my community college writing classroom was visited by the vice president.

I was nervous, I told my husband, because the lesson was a tricky one (the integration of implications), because it was the vice president coming, because even though I trusted my students completely, anything, anything could happen.

And it did.

The clock stopped.

Now, you might think there could be a worse distraction. And, there definitely could be.

I had practiced, I had prepped my incredible students. I had ironed, even got my hair cut.

But I had no idea how dependent I was on that cheeky little clock. Starting class, giving the 5-minute warm-up activity, stopping for a break, resuming, ending...there was no measure for any of it.

Technology -- basic technology -- had failed me.

Sure, the lesson went on. There were popcorn kernels and writing prompts. Reflection. Analysis. Evaluation. The students were their incredible selves: engaged, delightful, critical thinkers in full attendance.

Halfway through the hour(?), I stopped sweating it. If we started at 9:47 and ended at 9:47, if anything went super south, I convinced myself, I could pretend the whole class never happened.


Shannon O'Donnell said...

Isn't it amazing how many "little" things we've become dependent upon?

The Vice President? WOW!

Theresa Milstein said...

We use the clock so much for pacing. I could see how that would be a distraction! Glad you pulled through.

Angela Felsted said...

Love that last line. Awesome!

Jennie Englund said...

Theresa, you are so right: PACING -- that's what I was trying to say!

Anonymous said...

of the united states???

Anonymous said...

I'm glad it still went well.

I'm always watching the clock in the classroom. I need to pace myself.