I’ve been really fortunate so far, in that I haven’t had loads of really lame professional development experiences. In two years of teaching, I can really only think of one day that I will never get back.
I’m not saying that I’m going through this right now. This summer physics class is great – I’m just not learning any new physics right now. But I am working with partners who are new to the physics and it is incredibly illuminating. I think about every minute I’m asking them “tell me what you’re feeling, tell me what you’re thinking.” Suddenly I have a window into the world of cognitive dissonance. This isn’t my main point.
At the same time I am constantly fighting boredom and the desire to take over and do the experiments right! Their learning be damned! But instead, I am making a mental inventory of what I’m doing to indicate my boredom. And every time I’ve got an identifiable behavior, I think of when I’ve seen a student do the same damn thing. It’s kind of amusing.
So there it is. Next time I’m bored in a PD, I’ll have a list of student names in front of me. And I might break into laughter at inappropriate times.