I think I have been Hoovering through with teaching: chained to it at the hip, getting teaching epiphanies, worrying about students who checked out of class long ago (one of whom has decided to withdraw, thank goodness), and generally concentrating all my work/cleaning time on it day and night. On the plus side, my Excel gradebooks have never looked more cleaned-up and shiny, whereas usually there's an "oh, rats, I have to turn grades in" moment in which everything on paper gets entered into the spreadsheet at the last minute. I can actually tell students how many points they have for X or Y without saying "let me get back to you on that" and making frantic calculations. On the minus side--well, we all know what the minus side is, don't we? Although I did write and deliver a couple of conference presentations recently, that momentum didn't hold. Oh, no. Apparently I'm compelled to Hoover through.
Part of it is just being on campus all the time (and I'm not done for the week yet). The last few weeks of the semester are a favorite time for students whom you haven't seen all semester to materialize at your door and for administrators and faculty to schedule receptions, celebrations, award ceremonies, meetings, and presentations.
But now a few secret messages before I put the vacuum cleaner away for the day and concentrate on work:
- To the technology gods: if you had to bestow a massive, class-ending technology clusterfail on me, and apparently you did, thank you for leaving it until the end of the semester.
- To the student who wants to know if I've had a chance to grade the weekly work from February, March, and April that he tried to turn in all in a heap yesterday despite knowing that the deadlines have long passed: no, and you're too late to get credit for those.
- To the "oh, are you here today?" colleague from an earlier post: thanks, because your comment annoyed me so much that I went on the offensive with this, asking you, "which day are YOU here? I didn't see you last week."
- To the students who are excited about the options they chose for their final project and said so: I'm glad. It took a little longer for me to come up with those assignments, and it'll take longer to grade them, but your engagement in and excitement about the material makes that extra time worth it.