class of a different color
Each day, I teach the same class three times. I teach the same material, pretty much the same way each time. So why is it that one class, the one in the middle, is so much more enjoyable to me than either the first or the last?
I've tried to analyze the situation using logic. There are, however, many variables. For instance, in my first class, only about four of the students have been with me all year. The rest shifted into my class with the beginning of this semester. I still feel tentative and uneasy with them, like I don't know them well enough. My jokes feel stilted and forced. Everything I do feels awkward and unnatural.
My last class has only about four students I haven't had all year. So there's not that awkward getting-to-know-you thing going on. But still, for some reason I can't identify, they bug me a little. Don't get me wrong--they're great kids, smart and energetic, hard workers, all of it. But somehow, I just don't feel it.
Alas, my class in the middle is the high point of my day. They laugh at all my jokes (even the lame ones), and they look at me as though I have finally solved the mystery that is writing, or literature, or grammar--whatever the content may be that day. Bottom line, they make me feel like I'm doing a good job.
Aha! Mystery solved.