Tuesday, May 6, 2008

My fingernails are growing back

The semester is over! Aside from posting my own student's grades, I am finished until August--a surreal thought, particularly because last year I went through the summer (bad idea). I'm waiting to post my grades because two students have not turned in their final portfolio. There's a mean part of me (that is becoming more developed as I grow a thicker teaching skin) that wants to just flunk 'em, nuff said. However, since they have to upload it to some silly "academic myspace" type website, I am giving them the benefit of the doubt that they are merely having some technical troubles. I attempted to post some things on there to prove it was easy, and found myself surprised at the inadequacy of the site. Nonetheless, the department and university encourage us to use it, and since it means I'm not bogged down by 25 3-ring binder/folders, I typically use it for the final portfolio.

I have a lot of thinking to do over the break. I plan on reading numerous syllabi and blogs to try and figure out a more effective system. The first year is harrowing, and yet I feel I have developed immensely as a person and as a student (as a teacher, well I'm not so sure just yet!). I am very bad at facilitating discussion, and that comes from my own insecurity with my opinions. We'll get there. But for the more bureaucratic issues, such as whether or not to accept late papers. It is difficult for me to keep track of who turned in what, and when--not to mention the crunch it puts on my grading time. Part of me thinks, be human, people make mistakes. Part of me says, get with the program. These kids are typically first or second semester college students, still pretty wide-eyed at the world that just opened up in front of them. Anywho, that's just one problem, I have many more revisions to make, even just to my teaching philosophy. Maybe I'll put it up here, and see what people think.

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