Next Up!

Well, I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but I’ve had an awful time of keeping my own Blog schedule over the last few weeks, especially on the weekends. After not missing a post deadline for 18 months, I seem to have hit some kind of wall and can’t make it through a week with all of them on time.

Truth be told, I had an idea that this was coming, which was behind the call in my FDW presentation for decentralizing things a bit (and you can see how that turned out), but even then I didn’t quite anticipate some of what the last few weeks have had for me–surprise projects, various illnesses, unexpected responsibilities of various sorts, dead people, etc. I’m not complaining, I’m just sayin’, is all. Halfway through the term, I feel like I’ve been underwater for the last four weeks or so and not quite able to keep up with anything; but that, as the Chairman of the Board sometimes said, is life. I’m hopeful that in the second half of the term, I’ll have a somewhat different feeling about things and be able to keep up a bit better. And if not, I’ll blame weather.

Anywho, by my reckoning I owe y’all a pair of Think, Know, Prove posts, one Faculty Council Corner (my bad on the Candidate Forum request, Realist–a good idea misplayed by me, a dropped ball as it were, an error for which I apologize), a few What Up?s, and I’ve got a huge back up in my own reading and suggestion list/postings, not to mention more than a few comments out there to which I’d like to respond (I’m coming Avramakis! You, too Chris!) and all sorts of things that need more opining upon, and, of course, more than a little grading to do.

So it seems, therefore, to be a perfect time to throw to The Realist for some mid-term Shenanigans, while I try to take care of some business.

Thanks in advance, Realist. Take ‘er away…

ChicagoRealistPalooza

So, WordPress, which hosts this blog, counts their weeks from Monday to Sunday, which means that this week is technically the last day of “ChicagoRealistPalooza” (a.k.a. MidTerm Circus Edition), featuring fun and frivolity–eye candy–for faculty otherwise overwhelmed (or on the verge of it) by work and grading.

First off, I think it was a GREAT idea, Realist.

Second, thank you so much for pulling it off. (This one goes out to you.)

All of this, of course, begs an interesting and important question–who is the Realist? Many of you have, in various venues, asked me the question, and all of you have been wrong. A few of you thought it was me (it isn’t). A few of you have had other ideas about who it is–all wrong.

I know, but only because I HAD to know to invite the Realist as a contributor. I will never tell, however.

But you can still guess. Who do you think the Realist is? I will give you one hint (and only because the Realist has given it already)–s/he is a faculty member at Harold Washington College.

Who do you think it is?

One for Realist and the Luddites!

In this week’s Chronicle is THIS GEM:

Mark James, a visiting lecturer at the University of West Florida, declared his summer course in English literature technology-free—he skipped the PowerPoint slides and YouTube videos he usually shows, and he asked students to silence their cellphones and close their laptops.

Banishing the gear improved the course, he argues. “The students seemed more involved in the discussion than when I allowed them to go online,” he told me as the summer term wound down. “They were more attentive, and we were able to go into a little more depth.”

Mr. James is not antitechnology—he said he had some success in his composition courses using an online system that’s sold with textbooks. But he is frustrated by professors and administrators who believe that injecting the latest technology into the classroom naturally improves teaching.

Read the rest HERE.