Which Teaching Persona Are You?
Here’s a conversation starter I tried out for new TA Orientation, co-sponsored by UF English and the University Writing Program. Feel free to play along! Whichever teaching persona you are–or most decidedly aren’t–have a great Fall semester.
- Mr. Feeny, Boy Meets World. You care deeply about your students, yet you’re convinced that pop culture and technology are ruining education. Bring back Gutenberg’s generation!
- Ms. Norbury, Mean Girls. You’re hip and empathetic, and you’re a pusher. You might get too involved in your students’ emotional entanglements. Make sure you have a life, too! But hey, you’re Tina Fey.
- Mr. Garvey, Key & Peele. You know that class begins with Roll Call, and you’re not going to make that boring. No way. You do things Your way no matter what, keeping it real. Present!
- Ms. Halsey, Bad Teacher. Rules? really? And boundaries? What boundaries? Ratemyprofessors.com doesn’t have enough chili peppers for you. Have you thought about a different career choice?
- Professor Sandiford, Art School Confidential. Theory head? High-concept artist? You dazzle with your brain waves, and pique with your critique. Some students will wilt when you deconstruct their work. It’s hard being John Malkovich.
- Professor Snape, Harry Potter. You’re a master at your craft, and your first loyalty is to your profession. Students annoy you when they don’t follow your rules. They may hate you, but you’re really doing this for their own good. Your snark tops Sandiford’s.
- Professor Sprout, Harry Potter. You think hands-on teaching is best, even if it’s hard to keep your hands on those mandrakes. You really know your stuff, so you can get away with a little mischief in your class.
- Professor Trelawney, Harry Potter. You’re a free spirit, and you’re in touch with the spirits. You go your Own way even if others don’t respect what you’re teaching–or wearing. Organizational skills are a challenge.
- Mr. Finn, School of Rock. You could have been a rock star, so you tried teaching instead. You live through your students with your students, pushing them in new directions. You’d rather give out gold stars than grades.