Friday, March 20, 2009

Catchin' Up is Hard to Do

I'm thinking spring is here--or at least the idea of spring is here. I have daffodils with their perky yellow faces smiling at the world. I have heather looking beautifully pink. And I found this rhododendron starting to bloom two weeks ago. The rhodie gave me hope :)

It has been over two weeks since I have been here. My life has been too busy to do anything except finish the term--I still have 20 finals to grade. I needed to get the next term classes ready--I still have a bit of tweaking to do on my online course. I needed to get the next term adjusted--I finally found an instructor who can take my second class so I can open another section of my online class. I needed to create Summer term--I still need a few instructors for summer. I needed to hire a new fulltime dance instructor--we had interviews for the past few days. And I needed to sleep at some point. Most everything has been accomplished.

Gawd Winter term is the shortest term of the year and I feel it is the longest!

Over the past two weeks I hit the 45 pound mark. In fact, I have now lost 46.5 pounds. This week I have partied hardy. I have grabbed things on my run and some of them have not been the best choices. But I also gave myself permission to just relax this aspect. I think I needed something to help me breathe because I wasn't able to breathe on the past few weeks schedule. But now it is back to keep on keepin' on. Life is good.


Sunday, March 01, 2009

And the Beat Goes On

It's been an interesting week.

All week I have been hounded by a student who believes she deserves an "A" and I graded her with a "C." I applaud her persistence but every time I see email or hear her voice I have to take a deep breath and try to be patient. It doesn't matter that I am basing her assignment by national standards, she still believes I am being subjective. I have shown her the criteria; she has rejected it. And on top of this, she has decided I am too rigid with students and not flexible. She has continued with the idea that I am not thinking about the needs of the students but am making things easy for me.

You have to laugh :)

Now on top of this, I have a student who has plagiarized two essay exam questions, plagiarized to the point of simply cut and pasted the information from websites. When I told her she would not receive credit for the test questions, she tried to put it back on me, that I was not clear when I said to use the textbook and the Internet to support her answers. She did not plagiarize, she said, because she changed the words into her own. So I had to take both her work and the websites I found and paste them side-by-side, with all language and thoughts the same in red. Both the articles and her answers had little that was not red. A word here and there. I sent this to her. She said she understands why I might think it was plagiarism, but she just forgot to cite her references. One of these "references" was a t-shirt ad...she liked how they talked about a certain motif on the t-shirt... When I referred her to the student handbook, she asked if she could at least get credit for researching the questions.

You have to laugh :)

I lost 3.5 pounds this week, only a breath away from that magic 45 number. I asked Doug to take me out of town for the weekend as I have been feeling anxious and nervous. Probably waiting to hear back from one student of another... So we went to a hotel out of town. We relaxed. I still did school work but relaxed while I did it. The kitties were happy to see us this evening :)

Weekly pics are up. Things are not moving as quickly so I don't notice much change. Still worth seeing since I spent the weekend looking at myself with a whole different set of mirrors. Not a fun thing, seeing yourself from different angles and realizing how much you have to lose. I forget at home. I am just keepin' on keepin' here at home...go out and things look different.

But, between students and an unmanageable workload, I think I will, as Dory says in Finding Nemo just keep on swimming.