Blog Note: I will cease posting on my "teacher blog" and just consolidate all postings to this site. I have decided that it is impossible to compartmentalize my life, so I should just mush it all into one home of expression. You can still read archives here.
I am officially on break. Friday my colleagues and I waited around all day for students to make up finals, but few came. It was odd to be trapped in the classroom without students, but I used my time to revisit some classroom expectations and to organize the piles of papers that had accumulated on my least used desk (for some reason I have three).
The English Department has a long tradition of triple-blind grading for finals. All students submit an in-class essay based on similar prompts. Each set of finals is graded by two teachers (neither of which is the teacher of that particular set of students) and then a third teacher compares the scores and submits them to the "real" teacher. This means that each teacher can have up to 300 essays to score. This can be a bit daunting.
Also, I had the added concern of wondering if my colleagues were judging me based on my students' performances. I know we aren't supposed to "evaluate" each other, but I also know how teachers love to gossip.
Well I made it through my grading, and my students did well. I don't think I have much to worry about, but I am concerned that the process is still somewhat unfair. Please give me your input.
I hope that I can get some personal reading done during this two week break, but I will definitely pre-read Farewell to Manzanar because I am teaching it when we return. I am going to try to focus on tolerance literature this semester, but I am required to include some Ceasar and some King Arthur. (Damn that proscriptive curriculum!)