So, recently I was observed while teaching an evening class, and a couple weeks later had the opportunity to meet and discuss the professor’s observations. Except for one problem, most everything else can easily be resolved.
I was able to explain how the combination of illness and exhaustion were affecting me, as well as how accessory issues like Auditory Processing Disorder and tinnitus and prosopagnosia meant that I had to either work harder or do some things differently. I explained how I took notes during the classes of what I wanted to do differently, to keep improving my teaching. I think that overall the discussion went well.
The prof had some really good suggestions, such as repeating questions, or asking students if I had answered their question. He reminded me not to mutter to myself when looking for something, as it was distracting to the students.
Since the observation, I decided to have the students pick up their returned papers from a pile, instead of trying to pass them out. That had not worked out well. Due to my faceblindness, I was carrying around my seating chart and asking each person if they were so-and-so before handing them their paper. Students can accept that the first week or two of school, but even though I have mentioned my problem more than once, the concept is really hard for most people to get their brains wrapped around.
Halfway into the semester, I’ve finally sorted people out with regards to my prosopagnosic identification crutches, but I’m still working getting the names attached to their individual gestalts. The other week I was entering grades and finally realised that there’s a student who is in both of my classes! That this student is rather generic looking, quiet, and sits in the back of the classroom doesn’t help, faceblindness-wise.
But after the whole review experience had passed beyond the anxiety level into the stage of applying the information positively, I am still sighing over one point.
I thought I had gotten past this. I thought I had it down pat. But apparently, I still need to work on making eye contact.