Monday, March 09, 2009

Mistakes

Sometimes a few small mistakes can ruin a class. Sometimes big ones don't. It depends on the class and the mistakes. For the theatre tour class, I've made a number of mostly careless mistakes, but some have had a large impact. For those unfamiliar with the course, the concept is a sort of page-to-stage thing, where we read several plays and then go see them in performance. Once I took student to London; this semester we're seeing regional theatre.

Mistake 1: Inconsequential: In the syllabus I noted merely that a show opened on a particular date, because I hadn't yet secured tickets. Even after I announced in class the actual date, one student told me that she had already made plans around the opening. not a mistake so much as a miscommunication.

Mistake 2: The syllabus says that our second Spring break trip is the final Saturday and sunday of break, when in fact they are the final Friday and Saturday. Not only does this conflict with at least one studennt's plans, it is the same student as in #1. This one is all my fault.

Mistake 3: Next weekend, we're seeing 1 Henry VI. I was so excited a few weeks ago to teach Hal and Hotspur again. VI? IV? crap.

I've had lots of these students before, some several times, so they're very forgiving of my quirks, but these, well, these are doozies...

8 comments:

Fretful Porpentine said...

Oh, but VI means that you get to teach Evil Joan of Arc and assorted other French seductresses! I am SO jealous, especially if the production you're going to see is the one I think it might be.

Horace said...

The problem is that I already taught competing masculinities in Henry IV, and anxieties of going native, and all of it. I caught the mistake after we discussed the text...

Horace said...

But from what I can tell about where you landed, it very well may be the same production that we speak of...

Fretful Porpentine said...

Oh dear, yes, I can see how that would be a bit of a problem :)

Given that the production I had in mind is back in my home state and is really rather far from where I landed, it may not be the same one you're seeing, after all.

Horace said...

Well, shoot, you're not at all where I thought you were, though now I've figured it out, yes, that is a funny misnomer. But for the record, we're going to Virginia to see the show at the American Shakespeare Center's Blackfriar's reproduction.

Fretful Porpentine said...

Yes, that is the production I had in mind. (I've seen quite a few of their touring productions back when they were Shenandoah Shakespeare, but I've never been to the Blackfriars, and I've been wanting to for ages.)

Nels said...

Dude, it's not like you have nothing else on your mind but this class!

Moria said...

I'm with Fretful on the ooh squee!

But then, I would be.

And you can recuperate it by generalizing the conversation to a broader one about representation and history.

(Are you by any chance at all English, a hint of Scot or Gael or Pict or such? In my program we refer to quirks like those you describe as arising from a syndrome acronymmed TBTL - Too British To Live. The symptoms can be so charming.)