This week, I get to do two very cool things in other people’s writing classrooms. First, I’m bringing video cameras and microphones to four different sections of first-year writing and letting the students play and make and do with the equipment. This is both exciting and terrifying. Exciting: students (lots of students!) will be composing and creating with cameras, discovering new possibilities for communication and expression. Terrifying: somehow, I am the “expert” on this stuff, on these cameras – the classroom visitor bringing in the cool tools and toys. This is mildly terrifying because I wouldn’t (until recently, perhaps) describe myself as expert in these technical matters – perhaps I’d call myself “willing and open”. And look where this kind of openness gets you!
The second cool thing I get to do this week is start my official classroom observations for my dissertation research. I’ll be observing with cameras in tow – this time for my own data collection and documentation. And I’m going to observe with the help of several cameras, one of which will be in my hand. I’m most excited for this new challenge – to see and listen and look with my body, as usual, of course, but also to see and listen and look with the composing tool (yes, that’s the camera) in my hand. This, I expect, will be a very cool thing.
So here I go, back to (someone else’s) classroom – with cameras!