1,500 messages and counting…

LadyBeams, who kindly checked in to see if I was still in the land of the living, expressed some dismay at my absence lately from my blog.  I am, as it turns out, still alive and kicking.  Drowning in work, but still with one nostril clear to breathe through.

You see, I very fooloshly descided to use technology, blogging and Blackboard, for all of my classes this semester.  HUH?  Yeh, what an idiot.  At this point in the semester, I’ve read over 1,700 messages/posts, and I’ve posted somewhere close to 500 of my own.  It’s an insane pace I’ve set for myself, and I’m far behind in grading this work.  Students are really learning, of course, but I am swamped.  Weird deja vu here.  I mean, haven’t I been here before?  Didn’t I swear I’d never come back here again…?

I guess so many messages on the class discussion boards or my students’ blogs wouldn’t be too hard to manage if I didn’t also have to grade regular papers.  Remember that I am an English professor.  That means multiple paper drafts.  Let’s see, 25 freshmen who have written three papers so far = 75. Then 15 sophomore English majors who have written three papers so far = 45.  And 28 sophomore non-majors who have written one paper so far = 28.  And finally 24 on-line students who have written one paper so far = 24.  Mid-term total = 172.  But they aren’t through yet with early drafts, about 107 more to go.  Then there’ll be the final revisions of those papers to grade, almost doubling the number: (279 x 2) – 48 = 510 papers to read and mark this semester.  Don’t get me started on reading quizzes, small assignments such as bibliographies or paper outlines or the requiresd final essay exam in freshman writing…!

I’m not saying this to complain.  Seriously.  I am NOT grumbling.  I’m happy to have a job, actually. 🙂  But the next time you hear someone say that teachers have it too good because they get summer’s off, can you just smack them for me?!

In any case, I’ve never been more on-line in my life.  I just haven’t been here…or at my friends’ blogs lately! Ah, but the semester is only fifteen weeks long.  Eventually it will end, and I can catch up then with my blogging and writing and reading, etc.  Maybe even before then….

Back to grading now for me.  Just one last thing.  As you get ready to vote in Tuesday’s election, I want you to think carefully about things like funding for public education and whome you elect for postions on school boards and all that.  Listen guys, I don’t know any teachers who don’t work like dogs all the time, even in summer.  It’s an incredibly tough job to do well.  Please support our efforts.

And if any of you reside in Massachusetts, please vote NO on Question 1, a propsal to abolish the income tax in our Commonwealth.  We can’t take a 40% hit to our state budget.  Such a move would gut public education, especially public higher ed.  Things are tough enough for educators.  Please support your educators!

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3 Responses

  1. We missed you! I hope things get easier.

    Also, I hope people vote the right way on question 1 for you.

  2. Thanks, Paul. I really have about twenty post ideas, just no time to do it! I’m supposed to be grading three-week old essays for my on-line class tonight, but I can’t face them. In the morning. In the morning!

    Thanks for the good wishes for question 1. I am hopeful that the people of my state will be a lot more reasonable and far-seeing than the question 1 organizers think they will be!

  3. I wasn’t “dismayed” as much as I was worried. I just was hoping nothing bad had happened as your disappearance was so sudden. Now after reading this post, I can certainly understand. LOL. Good to be reading you again, though.

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