Monday, February 02, 2009

teaching takes time and mindspace.

it's happening again.

my morning class is suffering regularly from lectures with too many technical details, the sort of details that i initially think are "important" --

-- only to realise that no, they don't actually need this to understand the examples or do their homework problems; they don't care, either.

they just want the d@mned formu1as
i could be wrong, but that's what i suspect.

i could proceed to rant about dilemmas and opinions about students who don't want to learn, about what it should mean to teach mathematics, about this and that. i think i could expound for pages and pages. however, i'd mostly be repeating or paraphrasing my old posts and preaching to the choir of teaching researchers everywhere.

that serves no purpose;
not today, anyway.
there's work to do:

1. i have a problem in mind, one that a senior colleague suggested. the setting is not full set yet, and we're scouting in the dark: what can these techniques prove, exactly?

2. i have this idea that i've yet to try out for one of my usual obsessions (read: conjectures). admittedly, i don't think it will work. it's a little too similar to my previous ideas, each of which failed for essentially the same reason (or proof obstruction). this latest idea, however, borrows leverage directly from 9e0metric mea$ure the0ry, whereas my old ideas were too crude and began always from first principles.

3. i'm behind in my article writing. it wasn't funny before, and it's not funny now.

work beckons, and it is greedy for mindspace.

i'll teach the best i can with the time allotted, fine;
but there's more to my work than minding students.

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