Skip to main content

The Writing Teacher in Summer II

That picture isn't too accurate. Sunglasses, yes, but mountains, beaches and/or deserts? Nope. Like you, I had hoped this would be a summer with some freedom (art museums? long drives along scenic highways? pizza with friends? time with grandchildren at big city festivals?). Instead, we got quarantine. And instead, I needed some eye surgery. (It went very well, but it means that I couldn't really see much of anything for a week, and we're planning on another week of the same in a little while. Couldn't do much in the way of exercise either.) 

Last fall I really liked the way my 100 class went, so obviously the plan was to do much the same thing this fall. Nope. Covid-19. So now I have to figure out how to set up a class so it works well for you but with a lot less physical closeness (and a lot less sneezing and coughing on one another).

So what have I been doing?
  • Setting up English 101 and 102 distance education courses for the CCP (College Credit Plus) program.
  • Lots of local bike riding. (I love the bike trails—a couple hours a day sounds great).
  • When the weather or surgery recovery doesn't permit biking, I try to walk the bike trails instead. I've got a wild flower book, and I'm figuring out what some of those weeds really are. (Turns out that one really common "weed" is wild strawberries.)
  • For a long time, I couldn't just pop out to a restaurant for dinner, so I am relearning how to cook.
  • Reading murder mystery novels.
  • Writing letters to friends and blog items. 😉

For the future

The college is still working on details for re-opening in the Fall, taking all the coronavirus issues into account. (I'm so glad I'm not on that committee!) I don't yet know much, but we are definitely going to be in business—just not quite business as usual. I'm going to start posting specific how-to information at the end of July. In the meanwhile, the blog will be more personal.

By the way

If you are new to the blog, a lot of the early material was about getting ready for the Fall Semester. Doing something that resembles student work will really help your mind stay in gear, so I've recommended some reading and given you some advice about getting your computer ready for the new term. Go to the upper right of this page and click the thing with three little lines ☰ to see the older items.


Popular posts from this blog

Getting Ready to Launch

Hello and welcome to Ashland University English 100.

I am writing this on the last day of Spring semester final exam week, looking forward to a full summer and getting ready for the fall. Even in ordinary times, the summer between high school and college was confusing, frightening, and a little sad. After all, you have to leave a whole lifestyle behind and try to figure out how to become something (and someone) rather new. If you are uncertain whether it will all work, you're not alone.

The whole business with the coronavirus Covid-19 has made things even more strange and uncertain. The last day I saw my students was the day before Spring Break (March 6, 2020). We did the second half of the semester as a distance education course, with nobody on campus. I couldn't even visit my office to retrieve supplies. We really have no way of predicting how things will be in 3½ months—will we be together in class or not? I am just much in the dark as you are. So here is how we will deal w…

Summer Reading I

Summer is a time for some relaxed reading—even more this year than normal because a lot of the typical summer things won't work this year. Hang out with friends? Go to the movies? Swimming pool? Shoot a few hoops? Expedition to the mall? Not going to happen this year. There's just so much Facebook and Twitter that a brain can stand, and the evening news is plain depressing.

I'm going to suggest a few books to read. I assume that your local library and bookstore are closed at the moment, so these are all computer downloads, and they are all free. These are all from Project Gutenberg, which is the home of an incredible number of great books, all free and legal.

Onward we go, in no particular order (these are just a few titles that came to mind as I threw this item together—I'm certain I will think of others later):
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (The original murder mystery author)Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson (Long before there was …

Late Preparations

During this last month Look carefully at your class schedule. Mistakes happen, and you will find it much easier to correct them in the week or two before classes start. Do a campus walk-through. We are a small campus, but we are still big enough to be confusing. Some buildings are known by more than one name (a great example is the building our class is in: commonly called Dauch, it's also called COBE, which stands for the College of Business and Economics). Your Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule is different from your Tuesday-Thursday schedule. Walk both of them and actually find the rooms.Get an eye exam. Don't laugh. At least one student in every section I teach sits in the back, squinting and struggling to see the board. If you need glasses, get them. Wear them. They don't look weird.Go shopping. I assume you'll buy new clothes and such, but don't go overboard. What you wore in high school will probably work in college. Do be aware, though, that your class sched…