It’s true that last semester was my first time teaching a college course, but this semester is my first time doing it from day one. And I have two classes this semester! I wrote my first syllabus, and quickly after, my second syllabus. They probably have way too much information in them, but I feel like (hopefully) too much info is better than not enough? The two classes I’m tackling are Intro to Theatre, an online class, my first online class where I’m the teacher, and Intro to Acting, my first acting class where I”m the teacher. Eeeeeeee! SO MANY FIRSTS!
For my online class I’m copying a lot from all the online classes I took in college. That’s allowed right? Please tell me like stealing in writing, stealing in teaching is totally okay, because I am very guilty otherwise. We’re reading twelve new plays, and I did my very best to have not all the play be by straight white men. Here’s the list I came up with:
- Oedipus Rex
- The Tempest
- The Love Suicides at Sonezaki
- The Cherry Orchard
- A Raisin in the Sun
- Fefu and Her Friends
- How I Learned To Drive
- The Laramie Project
- God of Carnage
I wanted to keep the text book list to one, so all of these plays are found in Bedford Introduction to Drama: Seventh Edition, because times are almost always tight for students. This first week we’re going over acting and playwriting. I even posted a video going through the syllabus and everything, like a total pro. Well, hopefully, fingers crossed I did it right and didn’t confuse the fifty students I have signed up.
And tomorrow I show up for my in person class, Introduction to Acting. I am SO PUMPED TO TEACH THIS CLASS! My BA has an emphasis in performance and I had a really special acting teacher that I’m very excited to be teaching new students the things he taught me. Juan Castro, also known as Coach or Professor, taught me fresh out of high school at the Mesa College Theater Company, one of the most thorough theater programs I’ve ever encountered. In addition to acting he always told us to bring agency to everything we did. To every job, every relationship, because it takes practice to always be at your best. I took those words to heart, and try to apply them as best I can everywhere I go in life. When I started to write plays his words really echoed in my ears and that’s one of the reasons I think I push myself as hard as I do. I wish I’d had the chance to share my work with him, but unfortunately I waited too long to send him a draft of the first play I wrote. I wanted it to be perfect, and he passed away before I made that happen. Anyway, if I’m able to inspire my students a fraction of how much he inspired me, I’ll be proud.
So thank you Coach, as I’ve been setting up my class you’ve been on my mind, and I hope to keep you there this semester while I’m teaching it. I even got a stop watch to wear around my neck like you did, and I cannot wait to say, “Thank you!” when anyone goes over their allotted time. I do have to work on my dramatic turn though, I’m not sure mine will ever be as epic as yours.