On the First Day of Class, Begin with Intrigue

Bird of Paradise flower, illustrating intrigue
Credit: iStock.com/ozflash
I probably shouldn’t admit this, but when I was just beginning my teaching career, I had one clear goal on the first day of class: scare the living crap out of my students. I’m exaggerating, but only a little. And while I’m tempted to say, “I’m not even sure where this came from!” that’s not entirely true: it came from my sense that as a grad student and a young professor not much older than my students, I needed to establish my authority. It came from a fear that maybe I wasn’t as smart as I thought I was and that I needed to hide this behind a veil of superiority. It came from the intimidation I myself had felt semester after semester, year after year, as I sat in class facing professors I assumed to be infinitely wise and infinitely powerful.

To continue reading, you must be a Teaching Professor Subscriber. Please log in or sign up for full access.

Related Articles

How long is it before you touch your phone after you awake? Some of you will say right away...
Anxious not to be guilty of “policing,” many faculty work hard to prevent academic dishonesty by focusing on...
You know the feeling. We all deal with it. Walking into a classroom the first day of a new...
I’ve been wanting to write about my journey to embrace Rumi’s wisdom in my pedagogy. My teaching career...
We’ve now had ChatGPT in our lives for just over a year, but according to commentators, AI has...
Higher education recognizes the importance of tutoring support to improve student success and retention. But human tutoring is...
The Teaching Professor Conference 2024

June 7-9, 2024 • New Orleans

Connect with Fellow Educators at The Teaching Professor Conference!