One week down and 15 more to go

I have just finished teaching one week worth of classes to college freshmen. I have six classes and all together almost 90 students. At least they are not the difficult Kazakh names that I had when I was teaching in Almaty and had 100 students and five composition classes. THAT was difficult and I think I mastered their names by the end of the semester, just first names though.

I think I have some good students and because I have so many, I am making sure that they follow instructions right off the bat. Last week, first class I gave them a writing assignment where the Comp Lab students had to submit a 500 word essay to me by Moodle on Friday so that meant I was grading all 45 of them on Saturday. Then I had given an assignment to my three comp I classes of 750 words each to about 50 students so I was reading them all day Monday and today. I have their critique scoring grid filled out and ready to hand back to my five classes tomorrow.

Hopefully I will get some good revisions next Monday and Tuesday. I want them to give more examples about who their grandparent is and the particulars about their lives. They were giving me a narrative about their own experiences and I told the first class today that I want to know more about their grandparents. Perhaps that is odd for young ears to hear that, the students these days think that everything revolves around them. They come from small families and they have doting parents and grandparents. No wonder they think they are so special. Anyway, I hope to see more details about their hardworking grandparents. Some have given me good stories so far, others are full of fluff and vacant cliches.

Well, I accomplished one week so far and have about 15 more weeks to go which means the farther we get into the semester, the more difficult it will get. Well, I hope to make the instructions easy for the students so they know what I expect. Writing in APA style and using a thesis statement is foreign to some of these students. In fact, I have a class with 20 students and four are girls, the rest are football players and farmers. What a combination. That will be my most challenging class I think.

My first post for September 2014. Let’s hope I have more to write this month!

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