Kenya, Teaching

First Day of Class

My students were supposed to report to school on August 18th but there was apparently a mix-up, so they came yesterday, September 1st. The students picked their classes and then the teachers sat down to figure out the time table. I was assigned two units, Intro to Programming and Algorithms and Network Essentials. I taught these same two classes last semester so I’ve already prepared notes, assignments, and tests; all I have to do this semester is review/revise my notes kidogo (a bit) and show up to class!

I didn’t get a good look at the time table, but I think I’ll be teaching on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Both of my classes meet on Monday but the figuring out of time/room assignments didn’t allow anyone to actually spend time with the students. Today I lectured for an hour to the networking class and it felt good. I know all the networking students pretty well because I had them last semester for a different class. There’s one guy in particular who I can always count on to ask a question, so I always prompt him at the end of class… haha. I’ve only realized how much teachers love questions since I’ve started teaching. I think I never gave my teachers enough credit, and I really appreciate them much more now (especially the good ones).

In other news I’ve been revamping some of the college’s computer systems. We have two linux servers that have been around for some years (one since the first VSO volunteer in 2003), so I’ve migrated them to some newer software. I’ve got Zenwalk GNU/Linux running on one and Debian GNU/Linux running on the other. All of them run the latest kernels from with the Zen performance/feature patch set. Our servers aren’t exposed to the big bad Internet so it’s not really critical that they run the latest and greatest software, but it is fun to keep them lean, mean, and up-to-date! Also I’m slowly working with a few IT staff to demonstrate common system administration tasks, so I figure it’s best to use real-world examples like compiling kernels from scratch! Slowly but surely!