It's that time of year again, when professors around the world discover that their classroom assignments have been changed at the last minute. To be honest, nothing throws me off my game more than racing across campus to the class location, only to encounter a sign informing us that we're actually supposed to be somewhere else. Insert gnashing of teeth here.
Which leads me to musing about classrooms to which I have been assigned over the years, on various campuses.
Many of them were unremarkable except in their unified desire to thwart technological efforts. Most often in the form of overhead projector mayhem (ill-timed early shut-off settings, light bulb unreliability, disconnection from audio, and just plain orneriness) or broken classroom components. Not to mention bizarre and unwanted temperature variations (e.g., heat on in the summer, A/C on in the winter) that cannot be changed since, all over campus, temperature controls have been covered with boxes, and the unlocking mechanisms have been revealed only to those with the highest security clearance. Heaven forbid we teacherly types might need to adjust anything. Or to show a film on a screen that remains down when pulled down.
One of the more memorable rooms was in the basement of a church, with two enormous columns in the middle of the seating area, preventing us from seeing more than four other people at any given time. Moreover, that room was en route to an exhibit also housed in the basement, so every few minutes, people would stick their heads in the door and ask if we were "open" for "dinosaur track viewing." Eventually, one of the students put up a sign that said "THERE ARE NO DINOSAUR TRACKS HERE! Go to room X." Then one day, we went into the classroom to find that all of the desks and chairs had been, quite inexplicably, removed. There was nothing to do for those weeks but sit on the floor and pretend that we did not feel ridiculous.
But the worst classroom was in a building that was being renovated during the semester. We learned to counter the construction noise by yelling; however, whatever they were doing to the roof of the building created unusual air current trajectories, so we would suddenly hear an unbearably loud whooshing sound, followed by a blast of air that would blow random tiles right out of the ceiling frame. Although we quickly learned to be alert, we were collectively on the verge of developing ulcers that semester, what with all the screeching and ducking.
And the escaping of bees that flew in after the ceiling tiles fell down. *shudder*
So...what kinds of classrooms have you "enjoyed" over the years?