Monday, January 14, 2008

I just taught my first class!

Call me a little excitable- but I just taught a full 1 hour and 20 minutes of the first class for 'Communication Design Fundamentals'. And I think it went really well- I didn't clam up- I commanded my tiny classroom and thank goodness- students responded and spoke up. I have to thank Dan Boyarski of Carnegie Mellon's School of Design for 2 reasons: 1) Turning to me last spring and saying 'Have you ever thought of teaching?' and 2) Exciting three of my students last spring when he taught a mini workshop on communication design. These students with design exposure in the mini were by far the most outspoken and knowledgeable about the topic. I think their talk encouraged other students to speak up as well. I was heartened to see students throughout the room chime in and even ask me questions after class.

I had roughly 10 students show up today, 13 were registered, 2 were not registered and 2 were out of the country. All but 2 were female. Many were Qatari but there were also students from Egypt, Palestine, Syria, & Bangladesh. We actually went for the full class time, which surprised me- I even had to rush to give out an assignment for Wednesday. (I'm cruel- I know). The assignment is aimed to get their creative juices flowing and introduce them to the idea of typeface personalities. It will also begin to introduce other design elements such as page layout, materials, intention, and critiques and lead the way for an introductory lecture on type history and typefaces options.

Assignment: 'Visualizing Your Personality : How to convey your personality in the writing of your name?' Make a list of 10 personality attributes, pick 3. For each of those 3, make 10 thumbnail sketches of how to convey that personality attribute in the writing/drawing of your name. Take your best from each set and reproduce full size on A4. (I am quickly becoming smitten with the Metric paper sizes) No computer or photocopiers allowed. We'll see what they come up with Wednesday. I think the creativity bug is ripe in them- I gave them space to do a quick small self-portrait on their questionnaire form. One portrait was of landscape shot of a stick figure dunning (dune bashing- aka driving crazily over dunes). I love it.

Side note: My package of warmer clothing arrived from home (before the 2 boxes of texbooks)! The textbooks were shipped Jan. 5th and the clothing was sent Jan. 9th. Those textbooks might be held up in customs. We'll see. Thanks for the warmer duds Mom & Dad!


  1. Homework on the first day of class? Oh man, you're one of those teachers. :P

    Awesome job! So excited for you :)

  2. Congratulations on completing your first class!! The homework assignment would have me terrified. I'd be staring at a blank piece of paper for hours creative.

  3. Hey Rose! Jammers gave me the heads up about your blog... I'm so proud of you! You're awesome :) Keep it up, girl!