Slogging Away In Silence

It’s finals time in higher ed! We can tell by the nearly empty parking lot, the time spent gazing at clouds and snatches of conversations throughout the building whose content in so many words amounts to, Phew, dodged another one! Even the rep at T-Mobile had his finals story to share as we waited and waited for my current bill to post [NOT] so he could send Customer Service proof that they had charged a landline call to Mexico at the wrong rate and so I was due a hefty refund – for the third month in a row. Sheesh. Going into the store saves me hold-time. This way, I don’t get shunted from rep to rep, and they have to suffer their own inconsistencies. It’s a strategy born of long hours on hold during which I would tend to some more disagreeable task like filing or taxes. I guess misery does love company.

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.   – Ralph Waldo Emerson
As part of the portfolio, students write a letter to incoming students. Grading is slow-going because of the many facets that contribute to the portfolio grade, but in some respects, it is perhaps the most gratifying part of the semester. One student wrote the following:

Quizzes help to keep you focused and reinforce what you learned. It forces you to slow down and reread the information that you received. I also learned to have less test stress! I have always been one to panic at test time. I tend to do badly on tests and that was the case with my initial quizzes here. But by applying the techniques that I learned I slowed myself down and decided not to panic. I also retained more from the memory techniques I learned. And my quiz scores reflected that and rose steadily.

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