Sunday, November 14, 2010

A New Record!

For not posting, that is. I can't believe it's been THREE whole months since I wrote over here. I've been busy (as usual), so I'm not spending much time reading blogs these days and spending more time Facebook doesn't help either. So, what have I been up to for last three months? Let's see:
  • I had a class canceled due to low enrollment for the first time. This was good for me in one sense, since I've been busy with research this semester for the first time in a long time (more below). Having two classes instead of three has given me more time for other things. But, I had to add an extra class next semester (to keep my course load at five for the year) and that caused some stress (more below) because of the possibility of that one also being canceled due to low enrollment (since it's an unlisted seminar that I may never teach again). I have plenty of people registered now, but I was worried.
  • I got the reviews from that paper (that wouldn't die, but I finally submitted in over the summer) and made the revisions requested. I'm still waiting to hear back about it now. After submitting the revisions, I realized the journal has a pretty good impact factor, so now I'm really hoping it gets accepted.
  • I submitted a proposal to our state education agency to get funding for working with local teachers. It's similar to what NSF rejected several times a few years ago, but our chances should be better with this one. We'll find out in January- fingers crossed!
  • Teaching has been business-as-usual this semester, although I've been unhappy with some things. In my Big Freshmen Class, attendance has dropped off because I am not monitoring it. I go back and forth with this, because during semesters where I keep track, I always have some really annoying students that show up and talk the whole time. When I don't keep track, it gets pretty empty as the semester goes on. I am thinking of trying some more organized group work next semester (inspired by this). If you have tried this, please share your thoughts!
  • I walked stormed out of a faculty meeting for the first time a few weeks ago. We have an acting chair this semester who needs to work on some serious people skills (in my opinion!) and I felt ganged up on by others, so I said a few things (I think I even used the word 'jackass') and just left. I skipped our meeting last week, too, and don't plan to attend any others until our usual chair is back next semester (not that this actually changes much, but at least someone else will be running the meetings). I am tired of having my concerns and thoughts ignored and don't see any reason to subject myself to that stress. So screw 'em.
  • The day after that meeting (less than 24 hours later), D fell off a horse at her riding lesson, was knocked unconscious (had a concussion), and split her chin open. She had no idea where she was when she woke up on the ground, bleeding. I wasn't watching so I didn't see her fall, but ran over as soon as I saw she was on the ground. One of the other moms said she landed ON HER HEAD (shudder). D was remembering things by the time we reached the hospital (in an ambulance with her strapped to the back/neck injury board). Luckily, her back and neck were fine and she doesn't seem to have any lasting effects from the head injury (she was wearing a helmet). She had nine stitches in her chin (it was cut to the bone, so they had to stitch in layers- five were on the outside). The stitches are out now and the scar doesn't look bad (plus it's kind of under her chin, so it's not noticeable). She is not doing riding lessons any more. It was VERY scary and the fall didn't even result from anything dangerous (she was just walking and trotting).
Otherwise, I am just trying to catch up with grading and looking forward to a break over Thanksgiving. Now that D is healthy again, we enjoyed some family time this weekend running errands and seeing the Vienna Boys Choir. In a couple weeks, we are also going to a live show of Prairie Home Companion- it should be fun. We aren't planning any trips this Christmas, so we'll be here in Small College Town. If you have any thoughts on Team-Based Learning- please share!! I hope everyone's semesters are going well.


Dr. Cynicism said...

Glad you're back in action! Sounds like an exciting semester indeed.

Seeking Solace said...

Yay for being back!!!

I am having similar issues with some folks at my college. I haven't stormed out of a meeting, but I've been close.

comebacknikki said...

Yay! You're back!

I would love to walk out of a meeting (too many jackasses at my school) -- unfortunately, that would most likely result in my termination. Oh, the joys of working for a school with no tenure system or union.

Addy N. said...

Ha! Yes- having tenure means I can get mad sometimes, right? It sure isn't getting me much else these days (I mean other than the freedom from worrying about getting it!) :P

TiredProf said...

Nice to see you back here! I hope that D is better after her fall, though sorry no more riding.

I have a number of meetings I avoid these of the joys of tenure...