This was written for Edarabia when the University was informed we had to follow the guidelines for Obama Care and our class load was cut. In light of all that is happening in Europe currently, I am curious about the progress of the student from Denmark.  I wonder if her viewpoints have changed or adjusted as events occur daily and rapidly in Europe.

As an adjunct, this semester I have 4 classes, but next semester because of the new guidelines of the health care law, I will only be allowed to teach 3 classes. Many of the adjuncts I work with are upset at this new policy. Although some of us are veterans and have our checkups through the VA, we are still required to take 3 classes, no exceptions. Some of the other adjuncts work at 3 schools to make a living. Many have other jobs. My other job is baking, decorating, and merchandising for our cupcake store.

Since I am not full time, I try to keep track of my time and try to keep my prep time to 2 hours daily outside of my class time at the university. Since my schedule begins later, I am able to complete most of my prep work for my classes in the morning and in between my last class. I have about an hour and a half from 3:30-until 5 p.m, when I eat a late lunch and prep or correct papers. Sometimes this is enough or often during the weekend, I find myself correcting papers, tests, etc. Since this is only my second semester teaching these classes, I hope to find a better way to space my time so that I am not overwhelmed with work. I know the more semesters that I teach the same classes, the better my planning and knowledge will get.

Some of the reading material which I cover requires some in depth reasoning skills such as Plato’s The Cave, What wasn’t taught (Holocaust), Dulce et Decorum, etc. Since I am hired to teach writing, we cover the short stories, poetry, essays such as Emerson’s Self Reliance, Thoreau’s Walden Pond, etc., but I concentrate more on improving the student’s writing and critical thinking skills.

Mostly, we review the writing style, word choice, and the paragraphing so that when they write the 5 essays styles, they will be comfortable with them. For Advanced Writing II, they will have to write a research paper which I will monitor closely looking at their bibliography, and their rough drafts. We will focus on using MLA style and I will give grammar quizzes for them to improve their use of punctuation, and diction. Often, I find myself referring to YouTube with some challenging material choice such as Plato’s The Cave. The concept of education as the light “sun” and the prisoners in the cave of darkness waiting for someone to bring them to an understanding was not easy to understand. I am not teaching philosophy or the economics of Germany after the Holocaust. I remember to stay on track. If one students has an interesting viewpoint, that is good. In one class, there is a student from Denmark, who is on the soccer team. Since she was educated in Europe and speaks German, she brings an interesting perspective to the discussion of learning history in Europe. When we watch a portion of the movie, “The Dirty Girl”, she translates some of the footage. The students are interested and this class passes quickly, at least until the next class. We will review for the midterm.