For the none of you concerned, I think I fixed this place so’s your comments will show up immediately without needing my approval. Sorry, that was a default WordPress deal, and I could never find the settings page until today (Web 2.0!).
I just got done grading a batch of essays. I had them explain the hero’s journey with a movie of their choice. Overall, I was pleased with what I saw. My students actually did some analysis, and I think they looked at movies they knew well in a new, very literary way. It’s fun to watch a student squirm his way through the archetypes of Back to the Future.
BUT, my heart sank a little at the sight of their grammar. You know the feeling when you’ve got to clean up your room, but it’s so messy, there’s no real way to start improving it? It’s exactly like that. A few students grasp the basics and only mar up their essays when they stretch their grammar muscles beyond simple sentences. Others, however, can’t seem to write a single line of words without seriously ruining what seemed to resemble a decent thought underneath a pile of unnecessary prepositions to that which of the idea is that they were not in a way very good writers to themselves.
Others just don’t seem to try–at all. I hand back their papers. They peek at their low grade and admit that, yes, they didn’t really try too hard on this one. Well, thanks a lot, dumb dumb. I stayed up late last night capitalizing your han solos and death stars and adding periods amid your one page-long sentences because I thought you might have sincerely needed to know this stuff. Now you tell me you didn’t really try? Forget, just for now, about the consequences your laziness has on your education. Think about me: the guy who has to sit down and actually read the pile you threw together in twenty minutes the night before class. I have to give this half-assery a fair chance at the grade it deserves.
How about we pretend you phoned in a worthless paper, and I pretend to seriously assess your abilities? You get the 50 you’d deserve anyway, and I get an extra 20 minutes of my life back.
Have I mentioned lately that I love my job? I really, really do.