Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Pedagogical distancing.

I am no stranger to teaching. While not formally trained, I have taught one thing or another throughout most of my adult life, from several semesters as adjunct faculty teaching advertising at a college and a university, to teaching Sunday School classes to people of all ages, to teaching many, many workshops at writers conferences.
    But, come November 5, I will set sail on a 50-minute teaching trip the likes of which I have never before undertaken. It can all be summed up in one onomatopoetic word that heretofore described the sound of something moving quickly: zoom.
    Owing to the ongoing coronavirus threat, the Utah Valley University Writers Academy went online this year, and has been in progress since October 9. My presentation, “How to Build a Book Without a Blueprint,” goes zoom Thursday, November 5 at 6:00 pm MST. For the first time ever, I will attempt to convey my message to conference participants via a zoom meeting, where we will all, theoretically, gather around our computer screens to watch and listen and, I hope, participate.
    My presentations tend to involve a lot of back and forth, give and take, question and answer, and interaction with participants. That, in my limited experience on the receiving end, doesn’t always work out too well with zoom.
    Still and all, I am as prepared as I’ll ever be and hoping for the best.


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