Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My house smells like heaven. . .

Okay, I don't know what heaven smells like. True. Right now my house smells like "Curried Chicken Fricassee" from The Saucier's Apprentice and I'm pretty sure that's about as close to heaven as you can get on earth.

Better yet, it smells like Curried Chicken Fricassee and fresh baked bread. And brownies. And roasted broccoli.

Life is good. Life is very, very good. I am so grateful for my foodie friends and all of their lovely inspirations to learn to be a good cook, with good ingredients, and excellent outcomes.

(Perhaps this is penance for the Wendy's food?)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Spring Semester: DONE!

I know people aren't accustomed to talking about how students teach their teachers, but I'm going to share a few things I learned this semester:
  • I believe in my pedagogy. Starting out an English class with "What's going on in the world" seems crazy, I know, but getting students to engage actively with the world - and each other - is an effective way to both increase comfort in interpersonal relationships and work on critical thinking skills that are impossible to teach and only possible to model.
  • Modelling is an essential piece of what I do: "People who agree think X and people who disagree think Y" is an important thing to say and have students practice. And nobody learns to write well without reading well.
  • One route to citizenship in the United States is military service. This is one of many, many tidbits my students taught me to make me a stronger Trivial Pursuit player.
  • One can receive universal acknowledgement from students when discussing politics through South Park, Lady Gaga, or other pop culture references, though one runs the risk of having Beyonce's "Single Ladies" stuck in one's head for 4 months.
  • For my students, a groundbreaking series such as The Simpsons is. . . mundane. . .
  • Once every few years, the stars align and you get a classroom full of students you will miss. You will briefly consider failing all of them to keep them for yourself the following year, but will understand that doing so might actually alienate them from you. If any of my T/R afternoon students are reading: I mean you guys. I will miss you dearly.
  • A class is a success if students: 1) Master the skills covered, 2) Enjoy doing so, and 3) Spend their last day, which the instructor intended to be a day to mess around and eat and chat, complimenting each others' writing styles, reflecting on the essays we've written, discussing pedagogy, AND eating and chatting.

Thanks for the semester, friends. While I am elated that it has come to a close, I will miss you all. Please keep in touch.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Snapshot from our household

Actors: Monkey (7 1/2 year old girl) and Budge (nearly 4 year old boy).
Witnesses: Mr and Mrs Something

Monkey: You said kill. You shouldn't say kill. You don't even know what that means.
Budge: I do. It means to make someone die.
Monkey: And what does DIE mean?
Budge: To be killed.
Monkey: Here we go. And what does KILL mean?
Budge: To make someone DIE. DUH!
Monkey: And to die?
Monkey: That's not a definition. That's just a circle.
Mrs. Something: Well, yes. It's called a circular argument.
Monkey: Circular arguments are STUPID.
Budge: I KNOW WHAT IT MEANS IT MEANS TO DIE (punches Monkey)
Mrs. Something: Can you come tell my class that? About the circular argument?
Monkey: MOoo-ooooom. I really think they should know that already. They're GROWN UPS.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...