Thank You, Father God, for using me as a teacher. Thank You for Oswald Chambers’ devotion and uncompromising faith, for true questions, vision, arm’s length examples and victory over self.
Thank You for putting in my inner circle people who, in their attitudes toward me, would show me how I have treated You so I could learn the profound meaning of Your loving us still – even when we are useless, resistent, wayward, petty, self-absorbed, hateful, victimy, scapegoating, passing the buck, immature, cantankerous, obstinate, ridiculous, self-deluded, arrogant, indifferent, critical, hostile, monotonous, repetitive, unkind, and everything but the child of your creating.
We are saying, we know that You are God and You are a rewarder of them that seek You diligently.
We are saying, have Your way. Thy will be done, that we know You rain on the just and on the unjust.
We are saying that we know favor ain’t fair though we ask for it on another’s behalf and have already received more than we deserve.
Back against the wall after receiving an ominous email from the bookstore, I scrambled to find resources for students who would otherwise be without textbook midnight tomorrow when the course opens. Since College Success students are often first semester learners taking the course online to ‘get their academic feet wet’ an online grammar tool would be deeply appreciated. I always share my favorites, Purdue’s Online Writing Lab and Dave’s ESL Cafe, but today felt compelled to find a new resource to share.
Testing the waters, having just completed a question on the use of texting language in academic discourse for the flashcard version of the syllabus, I input the following string in a website offering grammar help.
“Whatcha know? I was txtng my homie and couldn’t unerstand wtf he was sayin.”
After significant, 12 or so seconds, of beach-balling, the cyber-gremlins returned the following response:
“No writing errors were found.”
Alternatives warmly encouraged.
I pray the curiosity-seekers will forgive me for leaving the site’s name off this wall of shame.
Despite the fact that I appear to be utterly disinterested in putting the syllabus together for the two classes beginning next week, I am having a thoroughly gratifying time discovering new and old resources. In the latter category is today’s find: Facing History dot org. I first became aquainted with them while I was yet teaching and learning in Massachusetts.
Today, I tapped their Immigrants and Immigration resources borrowing a classroom set of Crossing the Blvd and several hour-length or shorter videos from their lending library. May they receive funding greater than the need for such excellent resources and may cultivating compassion become everyone’s priority.
Finally, Yes! Magazine is sponsoring their Annual National Student Writing Contest. The deadlind is March 2nd. I’ve posted details in my course shells for extra credit and will add an Each 1 Teach 1 challenge with the borrowed books. I sense a legal status problem-based project coming on and just received the idea to make the syllabus flash cards instead of the colorful but still traditional one-way, two-dimensional format! I believe TunnelBrain, a tool available through eduTECHER will do the job dynamically. May even invite learners to post their score as part of the introductions. Oh how faithful my God is and how much sweeter obedience is than sacrifice. Blessed seed, indeed! See Isaiah 44:3.
The excitement for the coming semester is building for what feels like the first time in years. Yesterday, the Lord awakened me downloading the introductory lecture for the Migrant Lit class’s maiden voyage beyond cyberspace. Last night, after a powerful, transformative Bible Study, He put me to bed with restored lung capacity.
The fact that my course release has been turned into a chair continues to tickle. Nearly got lost researching best practices in teaching portfolios, blended instruction and 21st century skills. Guess yesterday’s Tech Connection continues to inspire.
While drafting my NCTE session proposal today, I discovered eduTecher, (not a typo) signed up for a new account and began filling my backpack. Hopefully, it will make good on its several promises and I’ll be able to blog and collaborate easily with students in no time.
Loved the Smart Goals tool it links to and am already well on my way to achievement of Goal #1: Complete editing of Dad’s letters.
So, at this point in the recovery, I turn in for the night with a measure of trepidation. How much sleep I will get is TBA. The last trip to the restroom, pun intended, ended with such excitement that I could not get back to sleep. God had begun downloading the introductory lecture for Miigrant Literature which historically emerges from cyberspace and enters the classroom eight short days from today. What a feast has been prepared! Hungry? Come, and dine.
Red Tails, a movie about the Tuskegee Airmen, comes out on the 20th. George Lucas chose to bankroll it when major production and distribution companies passed on the project. Let’s vote with our feet once again and speak back to Hollywood.