Sunday, December 1, 2013

Notes on Marking, on Sparkly Festive at the Opera, and a Sunday Review

I was delighted to find that the first paper I marked on Friday morning, first of this term's 80+ research papers to be marked over the next week or two, was an excellent paper. Besides the student's obvious intelligence and strong writing skills, the paper demonstrated some aspects of research methodology and rhetorical strategies that I know the writer gained from our class -- and that feels good! A validation of what I've been doing over the past few months. Since then, I've gone on to mark another 15 essays, and there have been some frustrating examples as well. But that first paper was not the only good one, nor was it the only indication that, for students who wanted -- and worked -- to learn, my class got students thinking and taught them new skills for expressing their thoughts persuasively.  I don't always feel this is so, especially during the last weeks of term, so pardon me for seeming to toot my horn here. I need the self-validation in order to keep moving through the mound of words, looking for the bright spots.

Speaking of mounds of words, let me sum up last week's posts for you here, in case you missed some treasures (in keeping with the own-horn-tooting ;-) and want to click your way back:
on Tuesday, I moaned about some surprise dental problems. Oh, you're right -- that's probably not an enticing description. But think of the joys of schadenfreude. Better me than you, right?

Wednesday, I wished my granddaughter a Happy 1st Birthday and thought a bit about the difficult tug this Nana experiences between career and family. Hook for you? Cute baby pictures!

Thursday's post brought you my new boots and a cozy new dress, courtesy of blurry photos. . . Why would you want to see this? Perhaps you're a Fluevog boots fan and you like to resist temptation. . . .

and on Friday, I shared the first of my Sparkly Festive Outfits

I had fun wearing said Sparkly Festive to the opera last night (and the beautifully dressed woman seated next to me complimented me on the brocade pants) -- what a fun production of Britten's Albert Herring the Vancouver Opera gave us with splendid sets, lively acting (some particularly comic physical work by a very bendy Lawrence Wiliford), great singing, and an astonishingly rich orchestral sound considering the small size required by Britten's score. I was surprised how much I enjoyed the music -- some beautiful (if satiric) ensemble work. I'm so pleased that VOA remains committed to 20th-century opera and in working to build a new generation of opera-lovers.

Also this weekend, I enjoyed a couple of hours running with three of my sisters along Vancouver's beaches out to Spanish Banks . . .
and another few hours baby-sitting a red-headed one-year old girl, a delightful time despite some unhappiness with teeth (Nana can relate, my girl, Nana can relate!)

Today, I'm hunkered down with more papers, but I'm hoping to take Pater out for dinner and catch up -- we've been running in opposite directions for much of the last few weeks, and some deep breaths must be taken.

And you? Are you enjoying the weekend? Staying in or out of the Christmas-shopping line-ups? What's the scoop . . . you know I always enjoy our chats.

12 comments:

  1. I'm glad that you marked an excellent paper first. Although I returned reluctantly from my journeys, I am happy to have a chance to attend this opera. We traded our opening night seats for next Saturday's show. Your sweater and brocade pants are very elegant. I spent the afternoon with my daughter who I have not seen for two
    months.Monsieur, daughter and I shared a healthy seafood dinner.I have bought fun gifts for great niece and nephew (aged 5 and 3) but I have not really thought about shopping yet.

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    1. I'll be keen to hear what you think of Albert Herring -- and if you have opening seats for other operas in the season, perhaps we can meet.
      I haven't thought seriously about shopping yet either -- better get to it soon!

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  2. It must be so rewarding when those seeds you've planted take root. Toot that horn long and loud!!

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    1. It is rewarding -- so often it seems doubtful so I like to pay attention when good stuff happens. . .

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  3. No shopping for me yet, aside from some Christmas craft markets. That will change next weekend, when I will suit up and go downtown - something I love to do, when the lights are on, the stores open late and there is the promise of hot chocolate at Murchie's.

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    1. I like that attitude, and I think I'll channel some of it once I get my marking sorted. I can love it as well, if I get in the right frame of mind. And we have a Murchie's in Vanc'r as well, so yay to hot chocolate.

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  4. Hi Mater, I'm especially interested these days when you talk about your classes and students; I wonder if my son is taking on board 'aspects of research methodology and rhetorical strategies' that he has learned about in class - I hope so!

    My husband took Friday off so we could do some Christmas shopping, mostly for the boys. The rest will be done online, since family is all over the place.

    Hope you and Pater had a lovely dinner together!

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    1. It's nice to take that time off together to shop, isn't it? I enjoy doing some on my own, but I like to share part of the thinking and hunting -- and make a date out of it. (I actually ended up too tired and got Pater to make dinner for me in the apartment -- even more of a treat than eating out!)

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  5. Yesterday afternoon Tim and I went Christmas shopping together. We like to do that at least once during the Christmas season. We didn't purchase a lot, but had fun looking and thinking about what to give our children/grandchildren. Then home for a quiet evening. Saturday was less quiet as almost-3-year-old Miss A came for the afternoon and a sleepover while her parents went up to Chemainus theatre. Now I'm keeping my eyes open Duplo zoo animals and their keeper who were playing hide and seek and A can't remember where she hid them.

    Any teacher/professor would be pleased to receive validation. It's good to know that something of what you teach is being learned.

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    1. As I said to Patricia, it's nice to do at least some of the Christmas shopping together, even if just at the planning stage.
      Yikes! Watch out for those Duplo pieces -- they're killers on bare feet!

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  6. Aw. You and the little one, sharing teeth problems. :( xoxox.

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    1. Thanks for the xoxox. . . sympathy always welcome!

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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