California Acceleration Project, Day 2 #SOL18

Panel discussion with people from the chancellor’s office to talk policy, so the running commentary is back.

1. Right after the introductions of the panel members, the woman at my table said, incredulously, “They’re all white.”
Her companion: “Yeah that’s disappointing.”

2. The contract grading session was good, btw. I learned a lot about different ways to implement contract grading, especially ways I can ease into it.

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Nineteen #SOL18

My daughter is nineteen today and because we’re living in the future, and she’s on the other side of the country, I FaceTimed with her to wish her a happy birthday and watch her open her gift. I got us tickets to see Hamilton, and she (a) guessed that’s what the gift was and (b) had a lukewarm reaction.


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California Acceleration Project, Day 1 #SOL18

So I’m sitting in this training today, and it is interesting and important but also kind of boring because I hate meetings where we sit and listen to lectures, so I need to have something else to do (this is where my best friend says, “mmhmm and you DON’T have ADHD?”). Hence, I will make a list of random things that occur to me during this session. It’s all day. (Did I mention it’s all day?)


For background, the law in California is changing for student completion of transfer-level (aka 101) English, so the conference is all about acceleration to get students who would typically place below transfer to complete transfer-level courses within in one academic year.


1. We just found out that the community college in Baltimore County caps their comp classes at 20, and we all just died a little bit inside.


2. Also, shout-out to my alma mater, University of Maryland Baltimore County.


3. I was wide awake when I came in this room, btw. Now I just want a nap.


4. My coworker who definitely has ADHD is doing a better job paying attention and taking notes than I am. (I know because I am looking at his notes.)
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This day has been a day #SOL18

I missed posting last night (though I’m still on track for posting every day) because I was in such a crabby mood that I couldn’t even muster the energy to open WordPress. I wanted to post something kind of silly about how one of my students was being a jerk (we were talking about spoilers, and I think he was being deliberately obtuse), but it just felt disingenuous. Then, when I almost had a breakdown because I wanted a piece of toast but can’t have one (and not because of my elimination diet but because the grocery store never has the kind of bread I can eat in stock), I just knew it was time to call it a night. So I ate some Cheerios (since I couldn’t have toast) and went to bed.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Quotations From Books

Has it really been three years since the last time I did a fave quotations post? Ah, well, here we go.

Top Ten Tuesday (2)
hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl

1. A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

ASAGAI: For a woman it should be enough.
BENEATHA: I know—because that’s what it says in all the novels that men write.

2. Fame, Glory, and Other Things on My To Do List by Janette Rallison

It’s been a week and a half since Brendan broke up with me, but I try not to think about him. He only crosses my mind when I see Lauren and him walking around the hallways holding hands, or when they eat lunch in the cafeteria sitting so close together you’d think they were Siamese twins, or when I cry myself to sleep every night. But besides all of that, I’m doing really well.

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Why, no, I’m not having class in here #SOL18

So, one of my classes meets right next to the machine shop. Throughout the entire class, there’s a lot of banging and clanging. Oh, and we can frequently hear the machine shop teacher yelling. When my students asked why she was so loud, I explained that part of it is they’re all wearing earplugs. So, we’re used to a certain level of noise and interruption because of it is what I’m saying.

But today. Oh, today.

First, as I was walking around checking my students’ work, I noticed a pair of huge black tennis shoes sitting on one of the tables (desks? whatever they are, they seat two students). Just right there on the table.

what are those

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Suspicious Activity #SOL18

Well, all of that generous giving I did Saturday night wasn’t without consequence. I went to buy something for myself yesterday, and my card got declined. Turns out the fraud department was very concerned about all of those unusual purchases. 😂 As soon as I logged onto online banking and saw the error message, I knew that was why.

bart credit card

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Book Club & Stinky Theater #SOL18

Yesterday was a good day, but long.

First, I had book club, which was a delight as always. I was late because of traffic and also because, even though I turned it off, my Google maps was somehow set to avoid highways. By the time I figured it out, I had already lost about ten minutes of driving time. 🙄 I mean, I still would have been late, but I would have been less late. Because, let’s be real, I was eating lunch and fooling around online.

The discussion was about Queen Sugar by Natalie Baszile, which most of us did not like. (You can see my review of it here.) Those who have seen the TV show much prefer that to the book.

One of the cool things we did was check in on our New Year’s resolutions and goals, and it was nice to see how many people had made (sometimes surprisingly fast) progress on theirs.

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Do unto others as has been done unto you #SOL18

I spent half of today at work (alone in my office, grading) and the other half sleep, so there’s not a whole lot to report. I feel a little out of it to be honest.

However, I have been thinking about paying it forward as a concept since that’s something I’m currently doing. I have been blessed (#blessed, even) in that during this past year, people I love and care about have really helped me out when I needed it. I asked for help with moving expenses (unexpected cross country moves are expensive) and then for travel expenses for my aunt’s funeral. And every single time, so many people chipped in.

Since it would be impossible for me to pay them all back, I have decided to instead pay it forward. When I see that someone else is asking for help, if I’m able, I give something. This includes my friend’s Facebook fundraisers or their own unexpected expenses for health care. Or even if they post a link on behalf of a friend or family member. I really think it’s the least I can do to repay all the kindness that I have received.

Slice of Life Challenge
Slice of Life is a writing challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers.

I need my students to cease their trippin’ #SOL18

Okay, so last year I was successful at the Slice of Life Challenge because I wrote all my posts the night before. Since I signed up late (yesterday, the first day of the challenge), I am already off schedule. So in an attempt to catch up, I’m going to post about something that happened yesterday right now, and then write a post tonight.

So, basically, my students were in fine form yesterday. I always get students who think coming to class even without reading or doing their homework is enough. Since I put my students in discussion groups, I usually make all the students who haven’t read sit separate from the groups and give them an opportunity to read. When I asked why they hadn’t read, they almost all said they didn’t have the book, which meant I had to lecture them AGAIN about how that’s not an excuse since the book is in the library, I have a copy, and their classmates have copies. Then I pointed out that they’re just putting themselves further and further behind because the activity we were doing was based on the reading AND that activity was preparing them for their test AND the test would prepare them for the paper, etc. Not to mention, we’re not going to slow down and wait for them to catch up.


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