Sunday, October 09, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving

Just a quick post to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving - no matter where you are! Many trees here have lost their leaves now. I was having fun tromping through dry, crunchy brown leaves on campus the other day. Always loved doing that!

Here, my house mate, Leah, has offered to cook dinner (bless her heart!) I'll see Aaron and Nicole next weekend, maybe, when Nicole's feeling more like herself again (post-surgery). We'll have a bit a of a family celebration whenever we can get together.

And since some of you have asked for a proper update on how school is going...

I took some time yesterday to do some much needed chilling out. As a result, the rest of the weekend will be spent with my nose in the books I have to read for my two courses -- one on philosophy and one on qualitative research methods in education. I think I have three papers due in the next three weeks or so? Yikes!

Did my first group presentation in the reserach methods course last week. Our topic was Positivism vs. Interpretivism -- which turned out to be much more interesting than I originally thought (yaay!).

Best experience doing a group presentation in my life, I think. Adriana, Yossi and Fredy were super to work with. And the best part was that we learned a lot as we prepared (which I think was the point, but still... it's good when you actually do learn stuff!)

Oh and of course, there's that first set of tests my Spanish 201 students have written that need to be corrected so they can be handed back on Tuesday. Like most teachers, I love teaching -- and hate correcting. It would be so much better if we could focus on the learning, assimilation and internalizing processes, rather than grading. The longer I teach, the more I think grades should just be abolished!

But since I get to follow the same prescriptive program as every other instructor, life without tests (for the students) and corrections (for me) isn't going to happen any time soon. (Sigh....!)

I'll start on the corrections as soon as I've finished this posting. With any luck, I'll get them all done today, so tomorrow I can focus on studying and maybe do some research. (And I have a Skype date with my cousin, Elaine, in a couple of hours, so that's good motivation to get going on the corrections so I actually deserve a break by then!)

Later this month I'll do a presentation for the
Intercultural and Second Languages Council conference. I'll have to start preparing for that next week, I think. I've been off the conference / speaking circuit for a while, so I'm feeling a bit rusty these days... I'll be putting in some good, solid prep time for this one, me thinks!

Oh yeah, and stay tuned for "book news" soon... (I won't say any more about it for now, but watch this space!)

So, life as a Ph.D. student is wonderful -- and insanely, crazy busy! I try to keep it all balanced, but it is a bit of a juggling act, I must admit. I love my classes and even though the readings are hard and tax (and at times, overwhelm!) this old brain that hasn't been in school for eight years, I wouldn't trade any of this for the world.

That's the update for now, everyone. Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and for those of you who aren't celebrating that particular holiday this (or any) weekend, I'll say "Happy Autumn!" instead.




Joe Tornatore said...

Funny that I am posting about Xmas on my blog and your are rushing Thanksgiving. nothing like living one day at a time.

Sarah Elaine said...

Actually, Joe, it IS Thanksgiving weekend in Canada! ;-)