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Introductions vs. Syllabus

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Now that I’ve got a chunk of my new SBG-based course under control (or, at least I think I do), today, I started to work on a sort of syllabus.

I have my old syllabi, and they’ve served me well. But now I’m going to a new school with high expectations, and my courses were previously taught by someone with a doctorate (which I do not have). I’m feeling some pressure (from myself) to get it right, even though I don’t exactly know my audience yet.

As I go through the sections of my old syllabus, I hack away now-useless things (like hall passes) and add new material (like how SBG will work in my classroom), and I wonder if I should add a bit about myself, or if that comes off as “please like me!”

And a lot of this is related to how I want students to see me. Safety (a large-ish section, along with a line for parent signature after the lab rules) is not flexible. Deadlines can be flexible for good reasons (does that make them un-deadlines?) A generous selection of helpful websites and resources. Approximate course schedule (so that I appear organized) and helpful hints (so that it’s clear I’m on their side).

And I don’t have my keys yet, but I’m not completely sure what I’d do once in my room. I do have staff email, but that’s kind of a glitch from long-term-subbing last year.

And I wonder how much pushback there will be. From what, I’m not sure. And I wonder how it will go, and what wrinkles I’ll run into.

The whatifs are invading, making me afraid of being exposed as something I’m not.


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