Thursday, February 04, 2010

Belated: Wednesday/Hump-day email followup

Over the past couple of years, I've developed the habit of writing a followup email after each meeting of each class I am teaching, rather in the manner of "minutes" or a set of action-items following a meeting. It seems to yield much better continuity: undergraduates, in my observation, tend to start thinking about class content about 5:00 minutes after the meeting begins, and stop (when we're lucky) sixty seconds after the meeting ends--when we're unlucky, 5:00 minutes before it ends.

So the followup emails, for both undergrad survey courses and graduate seminars, help to preserve the continuity: kind of like, as I say to the Celtic Ensemble, picking up the link of the chain which is the last note of one phrase, and making sure you preserve rhythmic/phrasing energy into the opening of the next phrase.

It's time-consuming, but, as I said to Dharmonia last night, I can keep ahead of it and all the other tasks if I have 30 minutes buffer immediately after each meeting, and write the followups and upload the Blackboard slideshows right then.

Here's a redacted version of yesterday's. Somehow, I think it captures the mixture of moods and modes I wind up using in the classroom, and out:


Good work today: lots of good participation; was it the rain???

Slideshow is up. Remember that you must READ THE SLIDESHOWS after class, as often there will be added material, questions or other assignments.

Listenin Quiz #1 grades will be posted outside my office, by R-number, by 12noon Friday 2/5/10.

Topic Ideas will be critiqued by TA's by 12noon Friday 2/5/10. Please MAKE A START on your Thesis Statement anyway, and get that submitted, in proper and complete format, by its deadline.

Speaking of deadlines: please bear in mind that YOU are responsible for knowing when assignments, LQ's, and RQ's are due--stay on top of these.

Online Reading Quiz due Friday. Note: RQ's will still be due during Wed and Fri of TMEA week; all RQ's due on Feb 10, 12, and 15 will open on Feb 8. If you are going to TMEA, get those RQ's done FIRST.

Friday 2/5 meet in your respective Discussion Sections. Note that attendance WILL be taken.

Speaking of attendance: remember that NO unexcused absences are permitted in this class. Every unexcused absence counts against your grade. Remember also that it is Musicology policy that all students must pass all portions of the grade: exams, LQ's, RQ's, research project, and attendance/participation.

Hence, you can fail this class through poor attendance. Note also that the university REQUIRES that students missing too many classes shall be dropped from the roster in the fifth week.

Please pass the word on this.

Dr Coyote

ps: One more thing: I recognize that not all members of a class may appreciate the various hi-jinks: joking, laughing, throwing chocolate, etc. If you are on of those persons who does not so appreciate, recall that you are in a room with 78 other people, many of whom find it easier to concentrate and be engaged as a result of precisely these hi-jinks, and please seek to tolerate them.

'Cause that's how we do.


Terminal Degree said...

I love the last paragraph!

Dharmonia said...

Who on earth doesn't want chocolate thrown at them?