It’s getting close to semester’s end here. And close to graduation. Some seniors are starting to panic; everyone is a little tense, including faculty members who hate this time of year when some students try to make up in a week for a semester of laziness. I had a sudden vision today of being trapped in a zombie movie, but instead of zombies stumbling around after “brains, brains,” it was students scrambling after “grades, grades.” Such students are a lot faster than the typical zombie, too. And they know how to use telephones and email.
I always have to remind myself that most students do what they need to do. Most haven’t waited until the last minute, or they got their shit together anyway. I’ve got many good students. For my Comparative Psych class this year I had students keep journals of observations on the animals they saw. Almost everyone did a good job, and I think some even had fun. Unfortunately, it’s often the problem students who make the biggest impression. And their crazy expectations!
One student handed in their journal this morning, two days late, and by 1:00 had already come to see if I had graded it. Seems you wouldn't want to harass the teacher over a grade for something that you missed the deadline on and are hoping they’ll be kind enough to look at anyway. Another of our 280 or so majors emailed me to see if I had a copy of their “FEP.” That was it, the whole email. It took a couple of exchanges before I learned that they'd sent an FEP page with their resume for a recommendation letter.
Of course, students don’t realize how many other students a teacher will work with. I’ve done at least 30 letters of recommendation in the past two months. I’m not likely to remember every sheet of paper sent to me, especially since I’d done this recommendation in early March. Honestly, though, I see faculty members do the same thing on occasion. I get emails assuming that I'll remember off the top of my head something about a faculty study submitted to my Review Committee months before, as if I’ve only had the one instead of the thirty I average a month.
Well, this post has rambled nowhere, but that’s partly because I’ve been grading, and meeting with committees, and writing letters, and grading, and responding to tearful phone calls, and grading like a banshee, and sleep is only a misty, half remembered dream. Makes me pretty close to a zombie myself. And, yeah, tomorrow I get a truckload of new papers to grade. I likely won’t post again until the weekend, and then won’t post at all the first three days of next week when the grading actually intensifies. I’ll try to get around to some blogs each day—-as a needed break—-but won’t be regular for a bit.
See you on the other side. Unless I get dragged down and eaten. Of course, I might see you anyway in that case. I might show up on your doorstep moaning for "grades, grades." Just shoot me in the head if I do. Don't make me suffer.