An Exhausting Day! -- 01/31/00
  • What I'm wearing: medium grey suit with maroon and black patterned braces, light blue button down oxford shirt, very subdued necktie (very dark shadowing reds and greys and blues), black Rockport shoes (probably should be highly polished wingtips with the suit, but the Rockports have very soft and supportive soles and I have been on my feet all day.
  • Where am I writing this... I started writing this at work in my office after finishing teaching a class all day.
  • Where I am when I continued this: at the computer in our kitchen at home.
  • What am I wearing now: the same shirt with a dark zipfront sweatshirt (unzipped), light blue stonewashed jeans, tan hiking shoes
What an exhausting day!

Don't get me wrong, I really love this job, but spending the entire day standing in front of a class is very draining. This especially true of this particular class since the first day is essentially all lecture, no hands-on exercises until the second day. That means that from 9 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. (with a one hour lunch and two ten minute breaks) I have been standing and talking.

That's more than six hours of talking (about technical stuff). Let's see... a high school teacher might teach five periods of between 40 and 45 minutes for a total of less than four hours. A college teacher at a community college might teach five classes, times three hours per week... at a university a full professor might teach two or three courses times three hours per week... And this is not a "technical training" course where I am standing there reading from the pages of an instructor's manual. In the first place, I wrote the course and the intructors guide... and I use projected graphics (which students also have in their student manual along with additional comments, explanations, examples, notes, etc.) and my lecture is usually based on discussing the architectures and processes diagramed in the graphics... although a student question can quickly send me to the white board to draw something in response to that question.

As I said, I'm not complaining about it, just commenting on how exhausting it can be (yes, but I also find that it is a great high, a source of fun, a challenge, etc.)

And once I get past the midpoint of tomorrow's class, I really start to enjoy it even more because that's when it gets more technical... from mid-day Tuesday through the end of the course on Friday is the most interesting part for me... technical stuff, but with hands-on exercises for the participants so I can rest my voice a little bit (still have to be available to assist them in the exercises... which I will have to do more of this week because the class does not come from the ideal technical background. That is, the ideal participant has several years of recent COBOL and CICS experience and is familiar with using ISPF under TSO... and we suggest that as guidelines/prerequisites, but people need to take this training who don't quite fit that background... my biggest struggles come when I have some C++ GUI frontend developers who know nothing about the mainframe world ...fortunately, that's not the case this week, just a low level of mainframe experience and a shortage of deep COBOL/CICS experience, and they do have interest and ability... and I think things should work out quite well...

Had to be sure I got this entry in... after skipping Saturday and Sunday, didn't want the month to end without another entry.
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