I shoved an invisible handout at my boyfriend Paul, who lay asleep in bed beside me. It really annoyed me that he was sleeping through my class! I shook him hard, and urgently, until he woke up. I watched him stir, blink and look up at me.
It was time to start class. I climbed out of bed and walked over to the bedroom’s blue wall, which was wide enough to hold a school-sized whiteboard. I grabbed a nonexistent marker from the nonexistent ledge and announced, “so today, we’re going to learn about adjective clauses.”
In big letters, in the air, I wrote, “Adjective Clauses,” before turning around to face the class. I began my lesson with, “Okay, first of all, let’s recap. What is an adjective?”
Silence. A familiar sound. In teacher’s college they taught us not to panic from the silence. In fact, allowing students an extra 30 seconds more than we’d naturally be comfortable with in regular conversation, could actually be beneficial for students. It would allow for them to process the question more thoroughly and come up with a better answer. So I waited. Still, silence. Stunned silence. I took another approach, “can anyone give me an example of an adjective?”
Finally, I got a response. It was Paul’s groggy voice. “Alexis.. what are you doing?”
What was I doing? What was Paul doing in my class?! I rubbed my eyes. No, wait, he was right. We weren’t at school. There was no whiteboard, no students. It was my bedroom. It was pitch black outside. The alarm clock on Paul’s bedside table read 4:26am.
Sheepishly, I explained, “I’m sleep teaching.”
I got back into bed, my cheeks flushed pink. I was such a weirdo. On rare occasions in my life, I had sleep talked, maybe even sleep walked, but this was the first and only time I ever sleep taught.