June 1, 2014

for what it's worth

"The best things said come last. People will talk for hours saying nothing much and then linger at the door with words that come with a rush from the heart." -Alan Alda

So here we are at the doorway of your sophomore year. Before you turn to go, linger a moment to tell us what's in your heart, whatever that may be. You can share what you've learned (in class or out), what you've struggled with, and what you've triumphed over. What were your accomplishments this year, academic or otherwise? Who changed your life in big or small ways? (Shout-outs are welcome!) When your mind rewinds the last nine months, what moments make you smile?

(For extra credit, post your response by midnight on 6/13.)

May 1, 2014

back of the bus

Discrimination is a major theme in To Kill a Mockingbird, which is set in the Jim Crow-era South. But discrimination isn't always a black-and-white issue. While it is often race-based, people are often treated differently or unfairly for a variety of other reasons: age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, physical appearance, disabilities, and more. The pervasive nature of discrimination means that most of us have experienced it.

For extra credit this May, write about a time that you were discriminated against. (If you can't think of a personal experience, you may write about one that you witnessed or heard of that affected you.) What happened, how did it make you react/feel, and did it teach you anything?

(For extra credit, post your response by midnight on 5/31.)

April 1, 2014

from the silver screen

The above video is Harrison Ford revealing his all-time favorite movie. (Harrison Ford is an actor who played Indiana Jones. Indiana Jones was a guy who ... oh, nevermind.) Btw, the Mockingbird movie is much different than the book, so you'll still have to read. Sorry, suckers.

Movies are texts just like literature, and like lit, they can entertain us, move us, and shape our opinions and behavior. For April's extra credit, choose one movie that has impacted you in some way--perhaps it made you LOL, inspired you to think about life differently, changed the way you speak, made you cry for hours, whatever--and explain, specifically, why you would recommend it to others. This doesn't need to be your favorite film, but just one that stands out to you for some reason.

Have fun reading each others' posts (and updating your Netflix queue!). Post by midnight on 4/30 for extra credit.

March 3, 2014

red-faced and rattled

While some of last month's posts (about favorite sensory details) revealed how different we all are, there were many similarities in responses as well.

One commonality we certainly share is that we've all--unfortunately--suffered embarrassing moments in life. And the only good thing about these humiliating incidents is that they're hilarious for others to hear about.

So for March's extra credit, write about a time that you were mortified. What happened? Who saw you? How did you recover...or did you? These should be at least a paragraph in length. Feel free to comment on peers' posts to offer consolation or harassment. :)

For extra credit, post by midnight on 3/31.

February 5, 2014

sensory overload

February's the month of love, you know. But instead of discussing red hearts, cupids, and exes we can't quite get over (or ones that we're SO over), let's share some of our other loves. Your task for February's extra credit (due 2/28) is to share one of your favorite things for each of the five senses. Feel free to elaborate/explain as much as you'd like and comment on each other's choices. I'll break the ice...

Some of Stefani's beloved sensory things:
SIGHT: The moment when hundreds of graduation caps are thrown in the air.
SOUND: Crickets on a summer night, hands down. Also the sound of a football team's cleats on asphalt.
SMELL: Homegrown roses. I don't care if there are little bugs inside; I'll stick my face in and snort.
TASTE: Ripe peaches--the kind you can't eat on a first date because you end up slurping and getting juice all over your chin and hands and you don't even care.
TOUCH: A baby's bottom. Yes, the cliche about it being the world's softest surface is true. (And no, I won't let you rub my newborn's butt to confirm; go find your own baby.)

January 1, 2014

word, yo

It's a new year! For those of us who are human, that means we have improvements (perhaps major, but maybe just some fine-tuning) that we could make about ourselves and our lives. I'm curious about your resolutions, but I'm picky about the format: come up with a New Year's resolution and condense it to just ONE WORD that you'll remember. Then, give a detailed explanation why you selected that word to represent what you want to work on in 2014.

Sign your post with your first name, last initial, and period #. Deadline for this post (because of semester's end) is Jan. 24 at midnight.

Here's mine as an example:
Stride--I'm choosing "stride" this year to remind me to take whatever comes in stride. This applies to a few areas of my life, but most of it's centered around having another baby. I know that will drastically change our lives, our space, and our schedules at home, but I also know it's doable--so I need to take it in stride. The next four months at work will be very stressful given several changes I'll have to institute in my planning, teaching, and assessment; in addition, I'll be preparing materials for a substitute, which is a huge amount of work. Taking these challenges in stride means not letting stress rule over my attitude or my health; instead, I'll focus on small pieces that I can accomplish and perhaps ask for some help with the rest.