Friday, October 29, 2010


We had a gradebook problem...just a little one.  Basically one student needed to be changed to a different class assignment.  The registrar made the change and the update happened overnight.  Except when that happened, it erased ALL of his grades!


Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I'm tired and I'm feeling a little whiny and OH MY WORD this weekend was fun, but busy.  (And yes, I'm aware that really none of that sentence in anyway relates, much less should be in the same sentence.)

There's just something about being around people that have known me a long time.  Y'all know what I'm talking about.  The tears flow.  The laughter doesn't stop.  The drama that had been is brought up and laughed about or conveniently forgotten because you're just that loved.  I had that this weekend.  And I needed it...badly.  I didn't realize how much I needed it until Friday night as the tears are flowing.  Each time we gather, we give prayer requests.  Am had brought the most recent list with her and we updated and then exchanged new ones and prayed for each other.  It was emotional, uplifting, encouraging and a sweet time of sisters in communion with the Holy Spirit kneeling at Christ's throne beseeching Him on a wide spectrum of topics.  And HE cares.  And so do we, each of us committing to pray and fussing at each other when life situations arise that we don't communicate. 

I absolutely adore my Ouachita girls and am so thankful the Lord has blessed me with their friendships.  We don't talk as much between girls' weekends as we intend to or want to, but each time we get together, we really do pick up where we left off. 

Sunday night I saw a grade for my most recent "Columbus is a murdering man" paper.  It stunk.  Truly.  And I emailed the instructor because I had been told the draft was very good and I made the corrections mentioned.  So why is the final grade so low?  I read my email to Mom to make sure I was being respectful and she agreed it was.  I was reamed by the instructor in his response.  Always nice. 

One student posted on the discussion board.  He was basically asking if anyone else was having difficulty processing the amount of information we're having to read.  He's overwhelmed.  (It's heavy material and LOTS of it.  The next assignment requires two whole books, parts of two other books, multiple articles (or a whole book), a movie and interviewing three different people.  The topic is affirmative action.  A good topic by all means, but a heavy topic.  An emotional topic.  And our paper is due two weeks from today.  Only three weeks after the last paper.  All of the students in this class work full time and are taking other classes too, so the amount of reading for this class is quite difficult to accomplish.)  Anyway, he posted his feelings of being overwhelmed.  The professor's response?  "Good problem." 

So I receive the instructor's email reaming me regarding my last paper.  He wants me to rewrite it.  (Ha!  As if there is time for that!)  The professor thinks it's good that her students are overwhelmed with material.  All of this led to my fb status last night: "No one appreciates a professor who has the perspective that her class is the only thing important."


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Walk of Faith

Isn't the Lord good? 

He is.  All the time.  Literally.  ALL of the time, the Lord is good.  But sometimes, I forget that.  Or don't trust that.  Or don't walk in the faith of that truth.

As all I've been talking about lately is grad school, why differ from the norm?  I'll give a grad school example of how the Lord was good to me today.  I'll write a different post tomorrow on what the Lord showed me in class tonight, because He is awesome.  But for now, a student's example. 

I turned in a paper two weeks ago.  It was a first draft and was worth 7 points total.  I received the instructor's comments and overall grade added up to 5, but he had the total as 6.  At first, my flesh thought "Hey, he made a mistake...who am I to correct him?"

We are to make revisions based on the instructor's comments and turn it in tomorrow.  I completed that yesterday afternoon and was convicted to email him about the grade disparity.  I just heard back.  He said he gave me an extra point for my overall work and he didn't think a 5 reflected that.  The Lord blessed my obedience by allowing me to hear a compliment.  I've never had a strong self-efficacy regarding my writing and slowly but surely the Lord is using different people to allow me to see a different perspective.  Not only did I truly earn the 6; it wasn't just a typo, but I also received a compliment.  That assignment was really hard, so to hear that the instructor thought I did well was good to hear!

God rocks!

I'm never going to get it right...and I need to stop beating myself up about it.

A friend of mine has this has his FB status today: 

"Every week when I leave church I am convicted of just how much I rely on myself and how I can handle things.... And how little I rely on Christ and how HE handles everything! I'm 32 years old and it seems I have to learn this weekly... Make that daily."

Not even an hour ago, I was on the phone with my mom fussing about how much grad school is ruling my life.  I mean SERIOUSLY ruling my life.  I have a paper due tomorrow, a thesis outline and references due Wednesday, a Reflection paper due Wednesday, a huge paper due November 8 that has probably 100 hours of preparation linked to it...and I could go on and on.  Yes, the test yesterday is over.  Yes, that is a HUGE relieft to have it off my plate...but there is still more to do.  Work is really overwhelming right now too.  REALLY OVERWHELMING.  Our district wants an effective teacher in every classroom and in the process to make that happen, they're going to send MANY effective teachers packing.  I won't go into the details since this is a public blog. 

In the course of my conversation with Mom, I tell her I have to remind myself that I really do WANT this degree.  I CHOSE to go to school.  I WANT to graduate and I HAVE learned A LOT and ENJOYED most of my classes and learning.

All of that to say, J's status really hit home. I need to be relying on Christ alone.  I need to go to Him when I'm tired and overwhelmed.  I need to quit relying on my own energy, stamina, knowledge and experience.  I need to realize He is my refuge.  My cup isn't currently overflowing...and that's my own fault because I'm not going to Christ or spending time in His word daily.

So often I feel as if I'm making it.  I'm in control.  I've got my act together.  That's a crock.  I have a black heart full of sin and I'm a messed up woman.  Christ has redeemed me and too often I forget that.

Jesus, thanks for the reminder.  I needed it today.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Easier Things

Does anybody else look at the pile of laundry that needs washed or the stack of papers to grade or the blank lesson plans and think "You know, I really need to arrange the books on my bookshelf?"

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Just a thought...

I've taken today off work to study for the Comps on Saturday.  I took Tuesday of last week off work, too.  I've made tons of progress and feel ok about the test.

During these days, I've gone for walks, done laundry, watered plants, worked in the kitchen, etc.  I absolutely love sitting at my dining room table with the window cracked open and the blinds all through the house letting sunlight stream through.

While enjoying these days at home, I've decided something.

It would really be better for children to have two months off school when they can be outside enjoying beautiful weather.  It's not scorching hot.  It's not dry and blistering.  It's absolutely beautiful, with crisp cool air and even a breeze sometimes! 

I know this may not be the case across the nation, but I think we should go to school in June, July and August and instead be off in September, October and November...but that's just me.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Emotional Eating

I didn't sleep well Monday night...stayed up too late and then was restless throughout the night. 

Which means Tuesday was full of caffeinated beverages!

At the end of the day, I read this post...and by the end I'm tearing up because I want a baby someday, too and laughing because she's just so real.

A parent of a 4th grader (not one of mine) came and talked with me about a project she was helping us with.  Long story short, she's not going to to do it...

She'd already rubbed me the wrong way a few weeks back about being willing to help her child's teacher, but not willing to do enough to help me too.  The project is making the game Concentration with vocabulary words and definitions.  Several parents are helping and they're all making 10 sets of each list of words.  5 sets for one reading teacher and 5 sets for the other reading teacher.  This particular mom wasn't willing to make 10 sets...and wanted me to find another parent willing to make my 5 sets.  Yeah...rude.

And now, she's not going to do it at all.

So I'm tired because I didn't sleep well.

I've dealt with a parent that is backing out when we need the materials she had volunteered to do.

I've read a post that has me laughing and crying.

But mostly, I'm tired.

I go home and eat chocolate pie...ummm, half the pie.

Yeah, not supposed to do that.  (I hear Hagrid in my head saying "I wasn't supposed to tell you that.  I was NOT supposed to tell you that.)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Move it along!

Yesterday I worked on outlining one of the eight questions I have to be prepared for next Saturday.

It's an outline.

It's over 5 pages long.

On to the next question!

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Remember those commercials?

I woke up at 5:49 this morning and my first thought was "Yikes!  I didn't set an alarm.  Thank you Lord for waking me up"  then I set my alarm for 6:00 and lightly dozed off.  I snoozed at 6:00 and 6:05 and 6:11 I remembered today is Saturday.


Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Sore Knee

Our church had the Lord's Supper on Sunday.  Traditionally, we have tables around the Worship Center with the bread and juice.  Whenever you feel ready, you get up and go get some from the deacons passing it out.  During the time of quiet music and reflection, I stood up to get in line.  Two friends were still praying and I had to stretch my legs a bit to get past them.  I lost my balance and cracked my knee against that little box thingy on the chair in front of us that holds the Bible and pens, etc. 

I don't have a war wound (sadness!)

But it's still very sore =(

Sunday, October 03, 2010

This week's paper (different from paper in previous post)

Every Wednesday for my Principles of Human Learning class, we have a Reflection Paper due.  We read a chapter and sometimes an assigned article and then answer some questions.  The paper is approximately 2-3 pages in length and isn't necessarily difficult, because it asks for classroom examples and perspectives based on experience, though it does take time.  This is the assignment that is due this Wednesday.  I love it!

Reflection Assignment #5

This assignment will NOT BE accepted late.

Papers should be neatly typed and formatted in the following style:
Heading: Name, EPSY 6340, Reflection Paper #5, and Date
Margins: 1” (left, right, top, bottom)
Font: Times New Roman / Size 12
Line Spacing: Double spaced

Due Date: Hard copy due October 6, 2010

Read Chapter 7 in your text and be prepared to discuss Cognition and Instruction in class on October 6. In addition, complete the exercise below.

1. Your assignment this week is the result of the analysis of two prevailing variables and one intervening variable. The two prevailing variables are:

 Dr. Schoger needs time to grade midterm exams.

 The students in EPSY 6340 studied hard for their midterm and need a break.

The intervening variable is:

 Dr. Schoger will be out of town for the next two weekends – one for pleasure, one for business,

Analysis of these variables, and their significant effect on the participants, demonstrate a need for a “freebie” this week for the reflection assignment. There is one thing you will be required to turn in, though. Print this page, and fill out the statement below.

I studied so hard for my midterm exam that I will positively reinforce myself this weekend by doing something nice for myself.

This is what I did for myself:


Grading Rubric:

Student did something nice to reinforce appropriate studying behavior - 10 points

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A paper written...twice...but not finished

I've written, in all fairness, two different incomplete papers today. 

The assignment: Assimilate and think about the issues raised by the authors.  In your essay,
(a) Write a letter to the Texas School Board members with your proposal for the revision of the social studies curriculum.
(b) Include main ideas and examples from the sources in this assignment or write a forward or afterword using the assignment's materials.  Finally,
(c) Discuss the implications of the authors' arguments for you, personally, and your chosen area of work.  Give specific examples.

Why should this be confusing?

Well, there is the word "essay" and the word "letter."  Those are not the same.  There is also the assumption that all students in this class are familiar with the state's social studies curriculum.  I am a social studies teacher and completed all of my schooling in Texas, but not all students in this class have that background.  None of our readings included the current state curriculum.  The assigned readings were quite extensive and intense, thus anyone needing to research the state curriculum would be quite taxed on time to be able to do so. 

What if I don't think there needs to be any changes?  (I mean...based on the assigned readings.)

One book we were assigned to read was from an extreme conservative.  The kind of conservative that thinks America should return to an entirely Anglo-Protestant republic, which gives all conservatives a bad name.  The other book we were assigned to read touts Washington and our Founding Fathers to be rich, white, Protestant men that were only concerned with lining their pocketbooks and giving themselves freedom.  Lincoln didn't really care about slavery.  Every politician and army in our nation's history was only concerned for Manifest Destiny.  We murdered anyone who got in our way.

You could say I didn't do much agreeing as I read.

I began one paper, that was quite well written and researched, if I do say so myself.  But it didn't really address the assignment.  I was on page 5 (the assignment is for 7 pages.)

I've saved it...though I'm not sure to what end.

And I started over. 

I'm on page 5 again....and stopping for the evening.

I'm at least on the right track now, but there is still some rewriting and editing and writing and then rewriting again that needs done. 

Friday, October 01, 2010

Phantom Noises

I thought I had posted about this already...but I can't find it.  Alas, it's today's post! :)

I've been hearing phantom noises lately.  At first, I would hear my cell phone ring as if it were coming from another know, distant, faint, but noticeable.  Except, my phone would be sitting at my elbow and obviously not ringing.  I shrugged it off as being a neighbor's phone...but weird (because that would be a REALLY loud ring for me to be able to hear it and because almost no one uses the same ring I do.)

Then a couple of weeks ago, I sat straight up in bed about 1:30 in the morning having heard the door bell.  I hesitantly checked the door.  No one was there.  No one was outside.  No one was anywhere near my house...nor did I hear giggling from some prank child around the corner.

I heard the doorbell again last night about 3:45am.  I did NOT go to the door this time.  I think I'm imagining things...but how the heck does it wake me up from (what had been) a SOUND SLEEP?

I'm still hearing the phantom phone rings, too.  It happens 3 or 4 times a week.  And the doorbell thing has now happened 3 times in the last couple of weeks.

Ugh...I need therapy!