Hello future 301D students,
Congratulations! If you’re reading this, it means you get to take CO 301D with Dr. Garcia. Put aside the rumors that you’ve heard this class is “hard” or that it’s “pointless” or “it just plain sucks.” This might be the greatest news you’ve heard yet: these assumptions are NOT true, because you have an awesome teacher.
Do not let the syllabus fool you. The workload is not what you think. Take a deep breath and think twice about dropping this class as soon as you get home. During the course of this semester, you will become attached to this classroom and all that is has to offer. The syllabus says one thing, this is what we ACTUALLY do:
-You do not turn in papers. The genre “papers” are actually opportunities for “do-whatever-you-want-so-long-as-its-academic-and-relevant-to-education.” You can paint a picture, make a video, draw on the sidewalk, make a statue out of balloons, create a picture book, write a poem, draw a comic…anything you want! Take advantage of this freedom and get out of your head that this is a composition class and therefore you should be writing essays. NO! In fact, I guarantee you that if you really think outside the box and create some awesome genre projects, it will help you become a teacher far beyond what a stupid-old-essay could. Bizarrely enough, my writing improved from this class even though I really wasn’t turning in essays. I know it’s hard to believe–I wouldn’t have believed it either. But it’s true.
-Blogging is not stupid and actually fun. You get to express your thoughts about classes, education, teaching, books, anything! And it’s personal to you, and your classmates will be able to give you feedback. The blogs can also become target points for class discussion, and believe me when I say talking about somebody’s ridiculous Facebook page is way more entertaining than flipping to page 62 of your textbook and talking about technical writing.
-The texts you read in this class are actually relevant to your future job. It’s accessible and beneficial. Class discussions talk about contemporary, meaningful, real-life experiences in relations to the text. Read it and find out for yourself–you won’t be disappointed.
-The external readings never actually happen. It’ll make the final paper in the class much easier if you do read an education journal, magazine, or article every week, but it’s not exactly necessary. Your blogs can be about you and your reactions to media, writing, or life experiences. Blogs are not critical analysis paragraphs about the articles you look up on Google Scholar.
-You will become attached to this class. Together, you, your classmates, and Dr. Garcia will talk about some pretty important things about your future–kids, students, stupid internet memes, your hopes, dreams, and fears. By the end of the semester, your classmates will know more about you, and you will know things about your classmates, that you never dreamed of. And it’s great. I gained 30 new friends within the course of 4 months–30 friends who share the same passions and futures as me! Not many classes can do that.
-You will watch videos, read articles, lead discussions, and play activities that will slowly awaken your inner teacher. Powerful, enlightening shit!
Now that you know what you’ll be doing, keep these following things in mind. This will help you be successful in this class:
–Memorize all internet page URLs related to this class: Twitter, TodaysMeet, WordPress, and the Google Doc.
-Check the Google Doc nightly and don’t skip the links.
-Blog frequently about a plethora of different subjects.
-Go outside your comfort zone when it comes to genre projects. Don’t be afraid to go beyond the expected and a little “weird.”
-Keep in touch with your classmates.
-Keep up with the syllabus and plan ahead–think of your discussion topic way before your discussion day. Same goes for genre projects. Think of an idea long before it’s due.
-Don’t be afraid to talk to Dr. Garcia about this class! Because there’s so much freedom of creativity when it comes to the stuff you turn in, check in with him to make sure you’re on the right track.
-Mark the syllabus on the Google Doc on your search favorites–more often than not, all that you need to know is in that handy-dandy document.
-Try not to miss class. Usually what goes on in the classroom is hard to understand outside of it. You can fall behind rapidly if you continually
ditch miss class.
-It’s good to have internet access at home. Acing this class without internet is close to impossible.
-Have an open mind about media communication. Twitter, back channels, blogging…it’s all not so bad, and actually much easier to follow once you get the handle on things. Very rarely will you handle paper products in this class.
Hope this helps! Good luck future CO 301D students, and have a blast!