The occasional ramblings of a freelance lexicographer

Monday, August 09, 2010

First day nerves

Tomorrow I'm starting my summer teaching stint at Bristol Uni - teaching EAP to overseas students. And I know it sounds a bit ridiculous, but almost 20 years after I walked in to teach my first class, I still get a bit nervous before my first lesson with a new group of students, especially now that I don't teach all year round. I'm not talking about a major crisis of confidence here, just a faint feeling of apprehension, a slight butterflies in the stomach. I'm not teaching until the afternoon, so I know that I'll be a bit restless all morning and won't be able to settle to anything else, faffing about and rechecking what I'm going to teach. I know it's illogical and that almost as soon as I've walked in and said 'Good afternoon' I'll be absolutely fine, but that doesn't make any difference - it still happens every time.

I haven't met my class yet, but I do know that the overall intake this year is more than 90% Asian - mostly Chinese and Taiwanese. Classes are always heavily Chinese-biased, but I'm still holding out hopes of an odd European for a bit of balance! Apparently, there's also been a huge influx of students doing Economics, Finance and Management (due to changes in language policy in that department). So I'm likely to be spending the next 5 weeks with lots of Chinese economists! I guess that's preferable to a load of chemists, computer scientists and engineers - I'm rubbish at science, but can talk fairly knowledgeably about business and economics! I'm very glad though that I'm teaching the 'speaking' rather than the 'writing' components of the course this year and won't have to plough through all those finance research projects.

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