Sunday, November 25, 2007


I tried that new blogger slide show button they were advertising, but Hombre, that thing was SLOW to then I tried the Picasa slide's all sideways in the space and the photos are extra small because they have that black border....we'll see. I also consolidated the Bahamas photos into one album. Some are taken by us, and some by friends.

I've been grading all day. I hate grading. There has got to be a special place in hell where all you do all day is grade; with care conscience and consideration. It would be easier if I could just chuck the things down the stairs and the one that goes furthest gets the highest mark (a special on at Walmart for lead lined paper). Give 'em a grade and let them hang out to dry.

I read and re-read and re-re-read. I check grammar and content, I make general comments about the work as a whole along with specifics. Why can't people put together well formed sentences? I mean, that is trotted out fairly often, but oh my goodness read enough and it starts to look pretty sad.

The other thing about grading that I hate is that it makes me feel that I have failed as a teacher. This only makes a little witty bitty bit of sense. Of course if your entire class hasn't the foggiest idea what is going on, there may be a problem there -with you. If the entire group is confused about the same issue, well you had better get on that, 'cause it's definitely YOU; but no teacher is going to take an average group of students and get A+++ from all of them. Yet every time I read an error, or a bit that is confused, I feel like I failed the students somehow. If I had said it differently, if I had offered the material in a different way, if I had recognised their confusion, if if if..... This is at best hubris, and definitely silly. They do have books, and more importantly brains of their own... I am not programming robots, and while some of the onus is on me, it is up to them to learn the material.

All the same. It makes me feel bad. Blech.


Beth said...

shoot, my daughter hates grading papers too! She saves up papers in a file folder and then has to do them all at once, and it takes all. day. long.

Theresa said...

Don't worry, it's not you. Students these days can't even put together coherent sentences in their own language, let alone a second language (because you are teaching English as a second language, right?). You should see some of the stuff my husband gets from his university students. Your slide show is looking good, those are some nice pics you've got.

Beth said...

Just a temporary/false sense of failure - you know you're a good teacher. Grading seems to be a universal headache. My sister just finished doing report cards - she says it's absolute hell doing them with the new computer system. (Supposed to be easier - it ain't.)

Beth said...

Nice slide show!

Anonymous said...

Back in Riga - my brother (left this morning for Toronto) and I drove about the Latvian countryside visiting good friends as well as our family property. The latter should have been inaccessible because of the muddy roads.
Luckily, its been freezing cold with some snow and so in our neck of the woods the roads were semi-frozen and we made it in and back down some tricky and scary forest roads/hillsides.
Lumber trucks wrecking the roads/tracks are our worse enemy - and an indication that lumber thieves have been at it again!!!
Ours is the only "former homestead" that hasn't been bought up by the local "hunting baron" for organized, grand show hunting parties.
The funny side of it - all the wild boars and elk taking refuge in our fields and forest wreck havoc of their own - some of the fields look like a wild and souped up small tractor has been digging around, going like crazy and pitting huge holes wherever fancy strikes!
But the hunters have been there recently - we found two huge piles of logs, with smouldering fires in them, in a sheltered corner by the old stables.
And lots of 4-wheel drive tracks all around the foundations of the old buildings.
WOW - all kinds of thoughts and feelings have been going through you a lot these past days, I see.
Happiness for me is getting the right vibes and a sense of satisfaction from challenging encounters and confrontations, be they people, real hands on work, ideas or diverse cultural events etc. that I've lived through and deal with.
I agree that the challenge moment is the necessary ingredient that has to be there to have happiness kick in.
CONGRATS on your health card - absolutely necessary for that basic sense of security - language problem or not!
Your worrying and wondering about the exam results are a sure bet that you truly care about getting through to your students.
There will always be those that can't or won't respond/learn no matter what.
Try going through and discussing with them what they did wrong so that your students learn to appreciate your effort and consideration.And the time you've put in correcting!
It also stops the usual "she's against ME personally" and it opens up communication between students and teacher as well.
The way you put it makes me appreciate your sense of loss of being "aground".
I can't really get a handle on that as I only love the seaside as a "wandering nature lover" and definitely not as a sailor!
Have a good day!
See you all in less than a month!

oreneta said...

Beth: I think it's universal, and it just isn't fun.

Theresa: It seems to be true, though everytime I say something like 'kids these days cannot make a sentence to save their lives' I figure that somewhere out there someone will find a 2500 year old tablet engraved in Latin with the same complaint....

Beth: Report cards are the absolute is easier to write a persidential speech I am sure....people care less.

GM: In less that an month!!!!I think it is very funny that all the local wildlife is hanging out at your place, rooting up all the plants... the health card is great, and I do appreciate your comments about teaching....and challenge, it is sweet isn't it...