I'll be the first to admit that I haven't been teaching at my best this semester. Oh, there have been some good classes. And I think I'm finally getting a handle on the one group of students who don't want to speak up in class. But in general it feels like I'm going through the motions a little bit, not fully reaching as many students as I have in the past, talking too much from the front of the room. I have a theory as to why this is happening.
This is my fourth semester at the University of Iowa teaching rhetoric to mostly first-year students. After years of adjuncting, it's great to be able to teach the same course again and again. I'm able to learn from my mistakes and improve semester to semester. Even better, prepping for class takes less and less time each semester. I keep an archive of class activities from previous semesters in Scrivener, and I can quickly arrange a few of them to make up a whole class period. It's great.