TEACHING: A RECIPE by Professor Schmerler
Serves 10-50 people. Should be served hot or at least warm.
An insane desire to transfer your own knowledge to other people before you die, thereby (in your own mind) achieving immortality (1 GALLON)
A love of your own voice (1 HALF GALLON)
Some schooling (2 CUPS)
Some prior knowledge of your subject matter (preferred) (3/4 CUP to start — you can make up the rest of the cups as you go)
Prep: If you are teaching in a community college or other, non-private academic environment that does not offer you job security: pre-heat your personal life by relying on this job for income to meet your basic needs (rent, food, clothing, coffee). This will give you the necessary attitude required to make your teaching the best it can be.
1.) Spend your lifetime wishing you could connect more to other people. Read/do/or otherwise perform one very geeky thing A LOT. Try to explain it to other people while you are growing up. Fail. Try again. Watch other people who explain their sh*t well to people and copy their style, attitude, demeanor, and actual lessons. (That last part is not plagiarism. It’s legacy.)
2.) Get an attitude (see above) that makes you feel comfortable in rooms where there is only one of you and you are greatly outnumbered by other people (who are preferably sitting in chairs). Seek out these places. Spend lots of time in them (especially sitting in the chairs). Deal with the boredom that comes with doing this. It is inevitable. It is real. It will be exactly what your future students feel while sitting in chairs, and it will help you if you feel it yourself, for many years, first.
3.) Plan a lot. Plan some more. Make lists and write them out and change them. Make charts. Always think about your plans when you are reading ANYTHING, watching ANYTHING (a movie, a TV show, a dance video on YouTube) and think and scheme about how you can incorporate it into your plans. These will inevitably become your lessons.
4.) Throw all your plans out when it comes time to teach. The students will roll their eyes and become bored if you don’t (see Step 2).
5.) Get a job. Any job. Stand in front of people and talk. Don’t worry if the people don’t respond at first. Don’t worry if they are too catatonic to even open their mouths and form syllables. You are all in a room, and that’s good. No one is threatening your lives (see supplement on Active Shooter Protocol), and that’s good. In short: Be sure Everyone is where they need to be and where they want to be.
6.) Repeat Steps 1 – 4 constantly throughout the semester, modifying amounts as necessary. Garnish with spice.
That last step is probably the most important of all.