How could I let another whole year slip by without blogging? Oh wait, I know…I’ve been gestating. Gestating my pedagogy, gestating my scholarship, and in the most literal sense…gestating a human baby!
Let’s begin with that last announcement. In January my husband and I learned that we were expecting our first child. In the beginning, excessive tiredness really slowed the momentum of my teaching and research. But since then, I’ve been blessed with an extremely smooth pregnancy. My body has been doing the hard work of building my baby all on its own, freeing up my mind to perform other forms of intellectual gestation.
Photography by Maundy Mitchell. See more at http://maundymitchell.com/maternity-portraits-for-sarah/.
If gestation is “the development of something over a period of time,” this word certainly applies to the way i’ve approached my educational endeavors over the past few months. There continue to be many changes and innovations at my institution, and I sometimes find it challenging to respond to new pressures and opportunities in a timely fashion while also doing quality work and making well-reasoned, well-researched decisions. I’ve been hard on myself for being too slow, whether it’s too slow to revise the Art History curriculum or too slow to post on my blog. Good thing my colleague, Abby Goode, is recoding “slow” in a positive sense in her forthcoming article on “slow interdisciplinarity.” Quality outcomes take work, and, well, gestation.
Just like the baby inside me, intellectual growth is not always visible every day, but it swells over time and will someday be revealed to the world! So as I gear up to take my maternity leave, I’d like to catch up on sharing some of the professional projects that have been gestating over the last year: creating an Open Educational Resource (OER) with students, piloting a student-driven Integrative Capstone (INCO) course, and gaining further training in Project-Based Learning (PBL).
Think I can cover everything by my due date? Don’t worry, I’ll probably deliver late…academics never meet their deadlines!