Saturday, May 2, 2015

10 Step Program

 Having taught college for over 20 years I know exactly how to complete semester grading and submit grades in a timely manner while also giving myself  a mani/pedi before graduation.

Step 1: make piles.

This is very important. The piles can be anything, but they should be neat.

The goal of this step is to find pens. Pens are a crucial part of step 2.

Step 2: find pens.

Grading requires pens. Red pens, blue pens, green pens and maybe a big fat black Sharpie.

Continue to look for pens until it is time for step 3.

Step 3: make coffee.

Or go out and buy coffee, but come right back.

And if you do go out to buy coffee, also buy pens (thankfully final exams always coincide with payday*) and nail polish and lipgloss for graduation. And maybe wine, maybe not.

 Remember to buy mints for graduation and a large Red Bull.

Also buy printer ink.

Grading requires printing. Probably.

Step 4: turn off all social media.

Blame the world for keeping you from grading. Check Twitter. Check email.

Get an email asking "are you OK?" and hit reply "of course! your email has been full all week!" but then the email bounces back so then the person asks again "hey, what's up?" and you answer AGAIN something witty but it bounces back again. Continue the non-conversation until it is time for step 5.

Step 5: make spreadsheets.

This is crucial.

Before any grading can be done, pretty gradebooks must be made.

Different items get bolded, a few get highlighted. This is much nicer than anything that could be done inside Blackboard and is a vital part of really connecting to channeling and manifesting and wasting the precious time and energy that is required to successfully grade.

 Fix margins, play with fonts, and make all the grades fit on two pages.  Continue until step 6.

Step 6: brag about the spreadsheets.

Take pictures of the spreadsheets and send them to your friends who are also grading as a form of solidarity.

Email that picture to that other friend and it bounces back, again. Of course. Continue texting and emailing until it is time for step 7.

Step 7: realize graduation is in a few hours.

Hair! Makeup! Gown! Hat! Finish mani/pedi! Use all these as justifications to not grade.

Take pictures of graduation preparation and shoe choices. Send them to friends. Send them to the friend with the full email. Laugh as it bounces back.  Curse. Continue until it is time for step 8.

Step 8: sit in front of the computer.

Log into Blackboard and look at all the things that are waiting to be graded inside the computer. Compare that number to how many exams are waiting to be graded outside the computer.

 If the answer is a whole number and also could be the diameter of a circle whose radius is pink and fuzzy, continue to step 9.

Step 9: write about how to grade while toenails dry. 

Step 10: go to graduation. Grades aren't due until Monday anyway.