Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Snow, Ice, and a new granddaughter - complications not foreseen

I'm prepping for a class I haven't seen all together since January 7th, and wondering how I'm going to pull off a visit to my new granddaughter in Denver, who will be a week old tomorrow. Thank goodness for doctoral students who are fabulous teachers. I have the Bookend class arranged for - Jamie [social studies] and Leigh [math] are going to teach the class on Feb. 15th, and do a better job than I could do because they will be teaching actual lessons from their own experience, then unpacking them. I know they can do this because I've seen them do just this on several occasions, so I'm not worried at all about Bookend. I had planned to ask them to come teach the class before Nora [the new granddaughter] was born, so this isn't something new. The "regular" section, though, is a bit more difficult because Leigh is taking a class on Wednesday evenings [when the "regular" class meets] and can't come in February. Maybe Jamie can come and do just her lesson - that in combination with online work [both synchronous and asynchronous?] will be fine - they [online classes] just take twice as much time to plan.

Because we [the "regular" class] missed the very first class of the semester due to the snow/ice, we are a week behind the schedule I had originally come up with - and since we meet every week, I will miss two class meetings with these students, not just one. Synchronous work is what I prefer, but I'm worried about the time difference - and frankly, worried about everyone's Internet connections as well - add to that the class size [nearly 30; really big to be online all at one time] and you have a recipe for disaster. I think maybe I'll come up with an online interactive lecture they can watch and interact with at their leisure and react to online, and some readings they have to reflect on and respond to at least one other class member. Then we can talk about differences in face2face and asynchronous classes and how those differences play out and impact learning. That might work, actually. Whatever I decide to do, it cannot negatively impact their experience of this course - or their learning in the course. I know that every professor believes his/her course is the most important one in a program, but because I also hold an MAT and my program lacked a literacy course of any kind - I know first hand how crucial this course is [whether anyone else shares that view or not!!]. So, I'd best get busy and get the interactive lectures done!


woo said...

You must look at the positive, first and formost because you are a female you can MULTI TASK ! and second thats why Clemson pays you the BIG BUCKS $$$$$$$$. HA Woo

Ann T. said...

I am sure that the class will work out fine. I know that I have learned a lot from every class so far. It is hard for me to imagine NOT having this literacy course in the MAT program. This course has been an asset when making my lesson plans and trying to come up with ways to differentiate my instruction. I have already used Think, Pair, Share; two Cinquains, List, Group, Label; and RAFT --and I even started one class by reading a children's book. I am truly thankful for this class.

Ibrahim said...

It’s awesome. You became grandmother. Congratulations! How is she? I hope everything goes well. Yeah I remember that time when we missed this class, because the weather didn’t allow us to meet that Wednesday. You don’t have to be worried about internet connection between students and teacher. We can find much easier internet connection, than our parents in their time. The only source or method that can totally help us, like the best friend. Nowadays people cannot do without it. It’s easier to make courses online. I am sure you do a great job. Everything will be fine with this. Best wishes, Cristina & Ibrahim.