May 3, 2007

CH5 Assisting the Instructor

Filed under: Creating, MiniNovel, publishing, TVC, Writing — techish @ 1651 UTC

I’d taken quite a liking to a couple of my instructors. I not only liked their classes, I wanted to more of their classes, more of their instruction, more of their knowledge! The sad part however is that many of the classes offered only offer a beginning. There’s no next step. The only way I would be able to gain more from these instructors would be to either become one of those leachy students that cling like a 3rd grader begging for attention; like the 5th grader with a crush on the teacher, or to find a way to be near them while they teach their classes to other students. Well, I couldn’t relate in either of those scenarios first, but I somehow knew that I couldn’t let them slip away – so I began asking if I could set in on their classes if there were open seats.

Both were very open to the idea, and it’s my nature to help others whenever I can, whether I’m supposed to or not, so setting in on the classes naturally led to me helping out during in class assignments, tasks, etc. It never failed that I continued to learn from the other students, from the instructors, and even from myself while helping others. I really grew to look forward to these opportunities as much as I did my own classes.

Eventually this led to guest teaching some topics and even substitute teaching. I’ll never forget the first time one of my previous instructors, who by now had become more like friends (even though I secretly put them on plateaus as my personal mentors whom I would emulate as much as possible) asked me to substitute teach. For them it’s no big deal because they’ve been doing this a while. For me this was huge – as somewhere deep inside I still couldn’t let go of that person voted most likely to fail and be worthless by some of the most prominent people in my teen years. Who knows why we allow things like that to become so deep-rooted that even two decades later they still hold us back, but in some sense, we all have demons in out past. And those are mine. I took substitute teaching very seriously. I also knew that is was only for one class, one three hour period of time, so there was no pressure to perform again the next week, only the pressure to deliver the proper information in a timely fashion, and by now I’d heard it so many times it was actually me parroting information with a few of my own interjections. But it still felt important.

I haven’t yet nailed this chapter down… as it’s very difficult to portray how much that meant to me and how much that really molded me, without getting off into some deep philosophic rosie-isms. I will certainly need to consult an editor before this chapter will be fit for consumption by others!


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