I've been teaching English for the past month without any idea what sort of curriculum I should be covering outside of "American Literature, and how to write a 5-paragraph essay, that they inexplicably call a 3.5 Essay." I had no idea what they covered already in the textbook, so I jumped in and started covering the transcendentalists: Emerson, Thoreau, etc. The kids were bored out of their mind, but the unit wraps up with Martin Luther King, so I thought it might eventually hit home. Today I'll be teaching "Letter from Birmingham City Jail" and persuasive techniques. Or trying to, since I can't get the students to behave at all.
Oh, and I'll be being observed in class by the principal. It will never be more apparent that I have no idea what I'm doing than it will be today. I know my material (in English. Not so much in creative writing or journalism, where I've never taken a class in my life.) If not for the school's desperation for teachers, I would expect to find myself out of a job this afternoon. I might still.
At least when I was teaching math I felt like I wasn't completely faking my way through it. Here, I feel like a fraud. Not that I'm not busting my ass to try to do a good job, but an engineer gets completely different training than a teacher does.
Anyway, any positive thoughts you can send my way between 12:45 and 2:15 this afternoon couldn't hurt, right?