10.18.2012

because nothing in my life is ever normal


someecards.com - Your online comments make me glad I only know you online


I learned something in the last 48 hours:

Online classes suck.

Especially 6 week long, accelerated online classes.

Tuesday was the first day of the first online class I have to get out of the way by February. It's Secondary Teaching Methods. My teacher friends gave me an idea of what to expect, so I wasn't that worried. I logged on early Tuesday morning to check out the situation. Look at me, getting such a head start! It's only the first day and I'm ready to knock out some assignments, I thought.
I was greeted with chaos. Chaos! There were a handful of people who had already completed all week 1 assignments and submitted them, answered discussion questions, and so forth. I felt my blood pressure slowly rise as I scanned the syllabus and all the discussion questions.  One thing immediately became clear:
I am the only one without any teaching experience. (I'm taking these online classes through a different school than I'll be getting my Masters from. No one else in the Masters program will have experience either.) I won't even talk about the part that I read the assignments to myself and James several times and still had no idea what I was supposed to do. Still kind of have no clue.

So while this class is supposed to be for future teachers, the instructor is gearing it towards current teachers and asking things like "which one of your students does this challenge apply to?" and "how do you handle this in your classroom?" and crap like that. And yes, I emailed the instructor with my no experience sob story. Her response? "I think you'll be fine." Ok! Thank you for clearing up all confusion for me. Excellent.

But really? She's the least of my worries. I know I'll figure out the assignments one way or another. I always do. Let's discuss my classmates. There is one lady who had all week one assignments submitted early the 1st day. That, in and of itself, is enough to give me anxiety (and it did). The syllabus says to form groups and collaborate on assignment. She commented on the next three people's threads begging them to join her group. They did. She then posted her assignment to get their feedback on. Mind you, this is still Tuesday morning and it's not due till Monday. When she hadn't heard back from them in an hour or so, she commented multiple times saying "Please respond! I thought you were in my group! Do I need to find someone else? I'm getting very anxious and nervous right now. I need to get this assignment finished now!"

And keep in mind, no one else from the class had even posted anything yet. She was harassing these poor people. Someone else finally posted later and she begged him to join her group since her members weren't immediately responding. She's the crazy lady. Her group members responded by the end of the day, kindly explaining they have full times jobs and cannot be online 24/7. Next time I read their threads, I'm making popcorn.

And then there's the lady who introduced herself by saying "I started painting rocks and selling them when I was 4. It changed people's lives, so now I'm an art therapist."

And I thought English majors were weird.

So what I'm trying to say is that it's going to be an interesting 6 weeks.

Also, how do I always manage to get myself in these situations?

11 comments:

  1. Can I just say AMEN? I am taking 9 hours of online classes this fall and they are so ridiculous.

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  2. Gotta love those online classes. Almost all of mine have been online, you get some weirdos in there. You just have to keep in mind that if this crazy lady who paints rocks has already turned in her assignments for this week, then she probably didn't do a very good job. At least, that's what I'd tell myself.

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  3. I feel you, girl! I'm in paralegal school and this session I'm taking is all online. I can't even express my frustration with my semi-incompetent classmates who 'reply all' to every single one of their private emails. And those gunners are in my class too-- people who had work submitted on Monday, when it isn't due until the following Sunday at midnight. See my post today for my feelings on the last week of my life. You'll get through it!!! We both will! :)

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  4. Oh girl, it feels like you never get a break! Keep your head up! I was going to take an online class this semester, but the professor was CRAZYPANTS and wanted us to write a 10-15 page paper, 2 8-10 page book reports (not to mention reading 2 books to write them), turn in weekly summaries, AND make some sort of powerpoint presentation. With two science classes and calculus on my plate, I dropped immediately! It just sounded like a total nightmare of an online class.

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  5. Yikes. I'm sorry your online class is not off to a great start! I feel even more lucky to have the class that I do now! That girl needs to calm down. Fortunately, I don't have to deal with that, because everyone in my class works full-time on top of school or is in grad school full-time. Either way, no one has time to talk the discussion board and complete a week's worth of work in one day like that girl. PLEASE. She needs to gain some perspective. Things like that are always the downfall of group assignments. I hate group assignments.

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  6. LOL to the crazy lady. I've done some online classes and had similar experience with the "overachievers" if you will ;) I was a night-owl when I took mine, working all day, sometimes evenings and getting school work done between 10pm-1am usually, ha! So I had a couple group members freak out on me as well.

    You WILL be fine though, just like ole' prof said :) It took me awhile to get the hang of offline classes, but I loved them after awhile!

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  7. Wowzers, it looks like you are in for a ride. You have to keep us posted on this woman's posts. She sounds like a control freak, makes for good entertainment.

    I took one online class..similar situation needed it to get in my MBA program bc my undergrad didn't offer it. It was a math class and it the entire class consisted of 3 papers. I got a 100% on all of them..here's the kicker. He emailed the grade back about 5 minutes after I would submit paper. I'm convinced her didn't read them. All in all I got the stupid requirement filled but didn't learn anything. Math online? really?

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  8. Wow. What a bushel of weirdos you stumbled upon there. I can't stand online classes. And I know this only because I'm currently taking my first (and hopefully only) online class myself this semester. It constantly slips my mind, I am often found comparing my work to others, it's annoying to get in touch with the teacher when he only responds every few days... I thought it was going to be a breeze because I don't have to show face in class, but it's actually the class I'm finding is adding more annoyance to my weekends, lol.

    Regarding the freak woman... I am all for getting your work done, but overachieving to that extent is annoying, not to mention, no one will want to work with a slave driver. Not everyone has 35980 hours to devote to an online course, haha. My class is lucky if I slide my assignment 10 minutes before it's due. :p

    Good luck! I hope we survive the semester!

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  9. That sounds like every online teacher class I have ever taken. There is always those people who think they are the most important thing in the class, and that's why they go into teaching. And they end up running their classrooms that way too.

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  10. I've only done 1 online class and it was a review course for my licensing exam. Not only did I have wacko people in it, i was terrified that the people in my class were asking some of the things they were. I work in veterinary medicine and I'm pretty sure that half my class has severely injured a patient due to pure stupidity.

    I'd much rather take a real class where I can be blissfully ignorant to the weird drama that goes on and the people that scare me. Just think, that obsessive woman is going to be shaping the minds of tomorrows leaders... Shudder.

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  11. I think your teacher might be my biology teacher (crazy comic sans lady), because I had some some issues and her response was THE EXACT SAME THING. "You'll do fine." Um...?

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