Thursday, December 9, 2010

Semester Debriefing and Notes for Next Time

Classes are done! Whew!

This was an especially busy semester--or do I say that every year?
What happened?
  • My students were all in all enjoyable.
  • Since I've taught these classes 4-5 times each, the prep wasn't so bad.
  • Grading was hell.  But why?  Students were pretty smart.  And they write better than students at my previous U. You'd think I'd be used to grading hell by now.
  • I didn't get as much writing done as I'd like--less than usual.
  • That one-week stint teaching in Europe is really more like a 1.5 to 2 week job (but I enjoy it so much).
Solutions (or How Next Semester Will Be Different):
  • Get back on my writing habit of 1.5 - 3 hrs first thing every morning M-F.  My daughter started kindergarten this year, and so must be at school a bit earlier.  This has been cutting into my morning.  Plus, I've had trouble dragging myself out of bed at 6am.  Must, must, must get back to writing at least 1.5 hrs. Go to bed and get up earlier (duh!).
  • Stop procrastinating on grading! Change turn-around time for papers from two weeks to one week. Either way, I just do them the day & night before (and morning of).  This way, they aren't hanging over my head as long.
  • Continue to think of new ways to not make the semester's lecturing and grading unnecessarily burdensome. Have a guest speaker.  Set aside the class before the midterm for review only.
  • Get back to working out minimum 3x/week.  Geez! Both my writing and my exercise really went to hell. 
  • a lot.  I haven't blogged about this yet, but I love love love to ski.

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