A couple of weeks from now, I will be hybrid-teaching college composition to a group of entering freshmen.
I will be masked; four or five students will be present, also masked; the rest of my students will be on laptops somewhere else scrolling their phones while I attempt to live stream the proceedings.
(Pretty sure there’s no way to confiscate cell phones remotely.)
It’s that last part, the live streaming part, that’s stressing me today. I have no idea how to live stream myself using my college’s technology, which has always been glitchy and opaque, and I shudder at the thought of trying to learn the ropes while also teaching the handful of students allowed to attend in person.
I’ve been sending emails to my department chair & program head asking for training … which they’re not in charge of because … that’s just the way things are. They are the people most intimately familiar with what I’ll be trying to achieve in a hybrid learning set up, but they won’t be the ones walking me through the technology I’ll have to use to pull it off.
Someone else is in charge of training, and it’s all virtual. All of it.
Virtual training on how to use Blackboard or Zoom is only marginally superior to self-training via YouTube videos and PDF files, but I’ll survive. I can practice both before we go quote-unquote live.
But virtual training on actual hardware I’ll have to use in real time inside a real classroom … as they say on Twitter, that’s a hard no. One moment’s lapse of attention, and I’ll be lost.
Speaking of attention lapses, I wonder if I can record the training?
Sounds like a job for a cell phone.
Cell phone agonistes