Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The only picture I took in my travels. Achilles is a huge GSD. Very lovable too. My friend adopted him in September.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

I'll be traveling and so won't be around a computer for much of the day tomorrow -- and once I am, I won't be writing here. So to commemorate the 50th anniversary of JFK's assassination, I will link to this old post of mine, "Gym Teacher from H-ll."

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

I'm in OK shape as the end of semester approaches. But, I am sure to plunge myself into a backlog shortly, as I plan to go to Buffalo to visit my "best" friend from November 22-24, and then from Thanksgiving until December 1 we'll be in Samsonville with little opportunity for working. I have an overly ambitious list of things to do on the days I will be working (tomorrow, and Monday-Wednesday of next week).

Monday was strangely warm, but since then it's gotten quite cold. One benefit, the skateboard-riding students have vanished.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Evaluating midterms. It's a task I dislike, and so tend to procrastinate. But, I buckled down and I've made good progress. So far, they are OK overall, in the A- to C- range.

Friday, November 08, 2013

I've been struggling with this post, started a private journal post on the subject to vent, abandoned writing even that. This semester I have a larger number of students than usual who are struggling. I've referred a couple for academic support. Some are slackers, some are overwhelmed by various life issues. There are attendance problems, assignments that are weak, late, or missing entirely. A big presentation looms next week, and this is the time in the semester where most students are felling pressured.

I like all my classes a lot. There are always many wonderful students, even the struggling ones. This week was trying, though. My Tuesday evening class is often my favorite in any semester. This fall, it is a good group, especially participatory, and the atmosphere is relaxed. However, there are some struggling students, some needy students, and also some slackers. Three incidents happened during class -- all concerning strong students -- that really bothered me.

I won't elaborate more than this, as who knows who lands here, and it wouldn't be right for me to describe any of the students' actions specifically. Suffice to say this week tested me, caused me to dwell on it afterwards.

Then yesterday I found out that I got  a raise and change in status, and that went a long way toward making all right in my (professional) world. It was a much-needed boost. Funny how things work out.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

As part of our focus on St. Francis of Assisi and animals, we are having a guest with a service dog visit class in two weeks. So last night we prepared, by reading the book "My Buddy, watching a couple short videos about service dogs, and making posters of "hero" dogs. This was our sample, crafted from photos of dogs we actually know:
Yesterday was my father's last day of radiation (for a slight re-growth of his brain tumor; this was not unexpected). Still, schlepping to Albany every weekday since September 23 takes a toll. We went to lunch at Sam's

when he had his first consultation at St. Peter's back in August. Sam's is closed Mondays, so yesterday we went to Lombardo's. You don't need three guesses to figure out what I had: Eggplant Parmesan. Both times. (Not that I have not had it many, many times in-between as well).

PS new shoes are AWESOME