Higher Education Webinars

Mama PhD

Mothers attempting to balance parenthood and academics.

October 6, 2008 - 8:52pm
It's great to be part of this Mama, PhD community, where faculty with children can share their stories, weigh in on important issues, and generally feel a little less alone in the neverending negotiations that all parents who work outside the home perform. Today I'm struck by Tedra Osell's comments on parenting and pedagogy in her Monday Career Coach column.
October 5, 2008 - 9:32pm
"Dr. K." asks: As an incipient Mama Ph.D., I’d like to know how parenthood affects your pedagogy. If anyone has had a before- and after-baby teaching career, aside from issues like daycare and fatigue, I’d be grateful if you could tell me how it changes a person as a teacher.
October 3, 2008 - 5:00am
So we were at the farmers market early in the morning before preschool and my son asked me if he could pay the man for our veggies. Sure, I said, and lifted him up to pay the farmer. He received two nickels change and I let him keep them. He was so excited he held them in his hands all the way to school. I told him to put them safely in his pocket until later. When I picked him up he remembered and pulled out the nickels. He held them in his hands the whole time we were at the grocery store after school getting all the supplies we couldn’t get at the farmer’s market.
October 2, 2008 - 4:47am
So far my sabbatical is not what I expected. I thought I’d stare for hours at a blank computer screen as I tried to muster enough enthusiasm to finish my book. My husband, on the other hand, was more concerned that I’d stay in my pajamas all day, not shower, and get nutty from a lack of social interaction.
October 1, 2008 - 6:27am
I do a lot of writing in the shower. Well, no, not actually writing things down on waterproof paper or writing on the tile walls with bathtub crayons (although that might not be such a bad idea). Instead my brain is abuzz composing paragraphs, writing lines for blogs, and thinking about proposals for projects. I’m supposed to be zipping in and out for a quick scrub, but needless to say, my showers are sometimes longer than they should be because I get lost in thought.
September 30, 2008 - 8:50am
Back in the days when my peers and I were having our children, I remember hearing that one friend didn’t plan to say “no” to her new baby daughter. She didn’t mean that she would indulge her endlessly, only that she was going to try to redirect her behavior rather than chastise it. I was incredulous — deep in the throes of parenting a four or five year old, I couldn’t imagine restricting my vocabulary that way. “No” was a necessity of life — and has continued to be.
September 26, 2008 - 12:20am
I have a friend in my discipline whose mother recently became ill. It is a relapse of cancer that she and her family thought had been resolved. It goes without saying that her family is devastated. This friend is also a professor who is struggling to maintain her classes and research while attending to the needs of her family. Her relationship to her department is strained, to say the least. She is asked to do too much, taken advantage of too often. Although she loves her work, it sometimes takes over her life.
September 24, 2008 - 3:42am
These last few weeks starting kindergarten have been hard! I remember this from my older daughter too; the adjustment is painful for my kids. Every morning I cheerfully walk my daughter into her classroom, trying to dispel her tears and anxiety with light banter, and she grips my clothes to keep me next to her just a little while longer.
September 22, 2008 - 10:26pm
There's almost too much important news these days to choose something to blog about. The economy, the election, the weather -- all of these defeat me, though I read and think and talk about them constantly. The news on the career and family front is related to these bigger issues, of course, but it is coming in, lately, in smaller, more manageable chunks.
September 21, 2008 - 9:46pm
I taught for several years at a state school of fairly low rank and then taught at a very diverse urban public university, which I loved. Now I teach at a fancy liberal arts college on occasion, which has been great, but it doesn't quite thrill me. I feel like I'm not really teaching them much of anything or it doesn't really matter because they're gonna make it no matter what. At Urban Public U., students cried when I left.

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