Thursday, December 9, 2010

pacing problems

FSP has an interesting post today about pacing while lecturing.

I tend not to move around too much while lecturing, which is funny because in almost any other situation I am extraordinarily twitchy. I go on long, fast walks while talking on the cell phone in the field and invariably find myself hundreds of feet from paper and pen when I need them. I tend to work very intensely in the office (with one or both feet madly tapping) and then pop up at random to release tension. I am incapable of sitting still.

So why am I so stationary when I'm lecturing or leading a meeting?

I communicate much more easily by writing than by speaking - it takes me more effort to organize my thoughts. Connecting with an audience and presenting a coherent system is a real effort for me, so when I lecture, I focus intensely on what I'm doing. I'm also acutely aware of how friggin' young I appear, so in an attempt at projecting gravitas, I tend to move very deliberately.

Maybe when I'm old and totally comfortable with audiences, I'll revert to being a spaz while teaching. Until then, I probably won't be distracting my students by pacing around the room.

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