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done and beginning

May 6, 2010

Spring semester is finished.  It left me with encouragement and discouragement. 

I am encouraged because although I felt like I didn’t do a very good job in the college prep ESL reading class, almost everyone passed.  If I had done a really good job, everyone would have passed.  I hadn’t taught the class in two years and pulled out my PowerPoints, updated the slides for the new edition of the book, and took off.  I should have spent more time thinking about what the students needed, given them more practice, and involved them more in the day to day activities.  Still their intelligence saved me from making a mess of the whole thing. 

I am discouraged because I did not really approach the class intelligently enough and because I discovered some problems in the course that the regular teachers haven’t made me see or I haven’t been listening close enough.  The course is usually taught by adjuncts who do a really good job and know how to teach it.  I make their schedules, but they know how to massage the schedules to make the class work for the students. 

This summer I hope to involve them in refining the course by rewriting some the tests supplied by the publisher to get rid of the true-false questions, improve the materials on the lms, and write some new quizzes to replace the ones we have.  I have made this our priority for the summer.

Now, summer session begins on Monday.  I will be teaching my communication class and hoping to revise it to make the video elements more effective and easier to evaluate by me and by extension by the students. 

A personal anniversary approaches as I have commuted to and from school by bike one year now.   

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