Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Marilyn, my Marilyn

My summer classroom is a pleasant space as industrial-type classrooms go. It's well lit (yay) and has plenty of dry erase board space. (Chalkboards are just so 20th century.) The students have plenty of space for books, beverages and notebooks and the chairs are surprisingly comfortable.

"All right then, lemming, so what's the problem toward which you seem to be building?"

Well, it's not a problem exactly. I noticed that the room was a trifle warm, not surprising in an Indiana summer. Then I noticed that most of the students in the back row wore sweatshirts. Utilizing the problem-solving skills learned during the course of my liberal arts education, I deduced that the air conditioning vents which were actually on must all be at the back of the room.

During the break, I took a stroll back there - and my skirt flew up in the blast of arctic air coming from the floor vent. Fortunately no one else was there, so I may still pretend to be dignified in front of my class.

Oh, OK, one complaint: I have to bring my own dry-erase markers for the dry erase board.


Rob said...

Dry-erase markers in the classrooms are are rare and thus very hot commodities here at LMU. Carry your own set and guard them with your life! I also have a tiny stapler in my bag at all times for emergencies (and yes I've let my students use it too when I've taught).

Bartleby said...

Well, the HVAC in your classroom does sound pretty suboptimal. But it could be worse. I'll have to ask you to believe me on this, given your tender years and how things have changed since I was an undergraduate ... but smoking used to be permitted -- encouraged, practically -- in academic buildings at my alma mater (Purdue, West Lafayette, that was). Students would sit and smoke in lectures. One of my physics instructors was so enthusiastic a smoker that he used to chain-smoke through his own lecture; I can still see him working his way across the chalkboard, chalk in one hand, cigarette in the other. I'll give him this: I never saw him get confused and put the chalk in his mouth.

It's a whole different world. And, in one or two ways, it's gotten better ... much better.