The most common problem I have in class is the classroom itself.
- Rooms without technology. Last semester I was assigned a classroom that had a projection screen but no projector and no place to set the portable projector to get a good image. This was in a class where I had planned regular student presentations. Luckily, someone switched with me. I've also been in classrooms that had only a chalkboard and were across campus, so it was difficult to convey the projector even if there had been a screen and convenient plug. I usually solve this problem by scheduling a class in the library for special viewings, but I find it very limiting to my pedagogy in general.
- Location. Sometimes I'll have a class on the far side of the Hill and then another right afterward in Humanities. That's tough, but not impossible. Much worse is the condition of a friend who has one in Humanities followed by one on the Ag Campus--that's 15 minutes to get to a class almost a mile away. When I've taught on the Ag Campus, I haven't had to rush there or back, but it was still a problem because students were often late. And don't get me started on classrooms that are still TBA 2 days before classes start.
- Access. Once I taught in a room that could only be accessed through a narrow stairway. A student broke her leg, and we moved for four weeks to the library.
- Sound pollution, sometimes due to construction and sometimes to other classes. In an otherwise perfectly nice SMART classroom, the class next door was always showing films too loudly. I sent the instructor an email requesting he not show any on the day of the midterm. At a final exam this past semester, a classroom across the hall was having some kind of student presentations that were too loud and I couldn't do anything about it. I would love to work in a place that has sound barriers, even just corkboard on the walls.
- Size and shape. I've taught in large, cavernous rooms where my voice echoes. One room in the Alumni Memorial Building had a little stage in front, which would have been great if it had been a literature class instead of a writing class. One class had old wood floorboards that creaked and echoed over my voice. I also had a classroom that had huge filing cabinets taking up half the space.
- Climate control. Older buildings with window a/c units are particularly problematic, because it's a dilemma between comfort and being able to hear. In lots of other rooms, you can't control the temperature at all. This is so important that I once traded a SMART classroom without working a/c for a plain room that had window units.
*Image from http://www.kidprintables.com/coloring/school/oldschool2.shtml