Not my finest hour.

So today I taught a library instruction session for a class. In a classroom whose technological setup I hadn’t checked in advance. (Those of you who do anything at all with instructional technology probably know where this is going.) And after I’d discovered that there was no computer in the room and raced back to the library to borrow a laptop so I could demonstrate various catalog and database searches, I found that the trackpad on the borrowed laptop wasn’t working as well as it could.

In the end, I borrowed a spare mouse from one of the students and went on with what I’d planned, while trying not to look like a complete techno-idiot. I hope the students got something out of it; things seemed to go better once the technological issues were cleared up, but said issues shouldn’t have eaten up classroom time to begin with. All of which was entirely my fault for not planning better, not
checking the configuration of the room, and not calling in the support
cavalry in advance.

The lesson to be learned here, obviously, is: Thou Shalt Check All Equipment Beforehand, Multiple Times If Possible. Also: Thou Shalt Try Not To Get Too Flustered When Things Go Wrong, Which, At Some Point, They Inevitably Will. I thought I knew both of those things, but perhaps there are some lessons you only learn through direct experience of screwing up embarrassingly in front of an audience.

At any rate, I decided I might as well post about it as a PSA to anyone who might benefit from the crucial life lessons I learned today. And now I’m off to drown the embarrassment in tapas and plan my next teaching session more foresightedly.

2 Responses to “Not my finest hour.”

  1. Jane Dark says:

    I’m sorry it didn’t go better. Hope the tapa drowning helps.

  2. Amanda says:

    Oh, it did. As did reminding myself that, in the end, the students probably didn’t care about the technical bloopers nearly as much as I did.