Saturday, May 14, 2022

Friday-Saturday Freewrite

OSU SALMON BAKE
Technically, it is early Saturday morning, but I started writing this in my mind on Friday just before midnight.

I have not written a freewrite since April 27th. I had something for attendance in one of my classes. I had a student say that I marked her absent when she wasn't, and I avoided checking all evening, turned out the light, and then I couldn't sleep until I checked it, and I HAD checked her absent in the grade book accidentally. I deducted points from her when it should have been for the person below her in the alphabet. An innocent mistake that, believe it or not, I had never done in 20 terms of teaching! So, I got that out of the way and decided to listen to Pray as You Go (John 14 meditation) because I didn't listen this morning. I was supposed to meet with F at 6 am, and she moved it to 7 am. So I went to the Friday prayer and meditation time with the Jesuits in Glasgow, and it was lovely and caused me to journal a LOT this morning rather than listen to Pray as You Go. I went to meet with F at 7 am, and she was stuck in traffic in her home country. So, we were going to meet once she got home, but I decided that it would be better to just meet next week. This way, I will be in a better every-other-week schedule since I cannot meet with her two weeks from today because of the final retreat for the 2nd Half Collaborative. 

I am going to do it in the second year. When I asked whether they needed me, they had D call me immediately to tell me that there was no question that they would need me. Since both my discernment times with two different groups were inconclusive about whether I should continue, I prayed more into it and decided that it would be good to do it a second year since I learned a lot about leading that group. They have an excellent curriculum, and I highly recommend it!

What I realized is that I will probably not lead an OMS Cohort next year. This one is pretty special, and I like the international flavor of it. I don't think I know anyone who is going to be doing it from my realm next year. So it was more a matter of cutting back on the groups that I lead. So, I decided that would be the one.

I think I will be amazed at how much more time I have now that I will not be leading classes at OSU. I took on this other class at OSU because the instructor had emergency surgery, but it is SO MUCH MORE WORK than my Pilates classes! My Pilates classes are pretty much teaching classes I had taught HUNDREDS of times before. So, other than Pilates with weights, roller, and Bender Balls (all of which I do more infrequently depending on the ability of the class), I don't have any preparation time for them. I have the attendance down to about 15 minutes after each class and about 2 1/2 hours of correcting assignments that are due in the middle of the term and about another hour of grading extra credit. 

This other class is HORRENDOUS in terms of how much time I have to spend at the computer grading assignments. It is not based on attendance in class. The students can do the walks any time they want, and then they enter a LOG and a screenshot of their MAP for three walks every week. So for 30 students, that is going through 180 submissions every week! And the first week, they had an extra submission of a VO2MAX calculation. So it was 210 submissions! It is a nightmare! It is so inefficient, but I am powerless to change it because it was set up for me before I agreed to take over the class. The syllabus was an old one written during COVID with no policy for late assignments and the absence policy was very nebulous. So I did change that, but the assignments were all set up in Canvas. I would have made it ONE weekly submission of all three maps and logs! That would mean I would go through 30 a week as opposed to 180-210. So, needless to say, this has caused me a lot of fretting because so many of them did not do the assignment. I haven't heard BOO from some of them. I did hear from one of them who said he had a problem because he got a job in Portland and it was going to affect his GPA for his sport if he didn't pass the class, and what can I do about it?

I don't think that is my problem, sir.

So, it has been frustrating for me to have to deal with all these emails from students. I did have one who missed the whole first week of class but showed me a doctor's note. So I extended his deadline, and he got everything in with 18 minutes to spare! That really was the highlight of my week. Truly. I will say that the students who are faithful to the class have been delightful! So, once again, I do love teaching, but it is time for me to go. I need to be done at OSU. I think I love teaching, but I don't love all the computer work. It is almost as though they found out all the cool things that you can do through CANVAS during COVID. So there is more based on the computer and even academic stuff rather than just doing physical activity with the students. I think we are losing something in the process. I would have preferred to have everyone meet at the front of the building and all walk in a group together (spread out as we walked). I could have gotten to know the students. I think next week, I will walk with a couple of the faithful students instead of doing the backward route. Most are doing them at different times, but the Southeast Asian students tend to do it together, and they would be fun to walk with.

One fun thing about today was that on the route of the walk, the Native American Cultural Center was having a Salmon Bake (see picture above)! So, I stopped on my walk and talked to people there. How fun. This is what I will miss: the buzz of the campus! I will also miss my students and working out with them. 

I MUST work out on my own now. So I need to really commit myself to doing Pilates as hard as I do it with my classes.

I think I am ready to go back to bed now. This was about a 30-minute free write but fun! (Update: went and cleaned up papers in my study and did not fall asleep until 2:50 am!)

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