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Posts Tagged ‘students’

Face Time


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I haven't had much time to put together a blog post this past week. Our daughter Megan and the kids came to visit and we've had a lot going on! Needless to say, we've had a lot of "face time" with our kids and grandkids. Megan put together a nice blog post which recounts many of our activities, so rather than re-inventing the wheel, I'll just point you to her post if you're interested in what we've been up to and in seeing some cute pics of our three oldest grandchildren playing in the kiddie pool at Mark and Katie's.

Here's a picture of one activity Drew especially enjoyed:

Drew Poppie Campout

Our daughter Nora who is expecting and is about at the end of her first trimester. She is ending her employment as a full-time nanny today and will be concentrating on building her cookie business — The Cookie Kiln. In the side bar of my blog I have put a collage of some of her recent creations and her business card. These link to her site in case you decide you want to order cookies from her for some special event in your life.

For the sake of those of you who never venture onto my blog, here's the collage to which I'm referring:
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You’ve Gotta Love College Students!


I'm convinced that being with college students keeps us teachers young. The things they come up with can be so funny! And you have to stay up on current trends and culture to try to relate as much as possible. I told my students recently that I feel like a college student trapped in a senior citizen's body. One thing that is amazing to me, though, is how much younger they're making adults these days!

With those thoughts in mind, today I'm posting some funny things about college students.

There is almost more truth than humor in the following cartoon. College is where you either begin to learn or get reminded of the fact that you cannot have it all in life.

In my files I found a list of ways you can know whether you are a college student:

You might be a college student if...
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What Young Things Don’t Know…


picture of yodeling

Some of the most bizarre stuff comes my way from people who read my blog. I'm not sure what exactly to think of that sometimes, but it definitely keeps life interesting. I recently learned about a website where you can learn to yodel. That may be just the thing some of you were looking for and didn't know existed! I have not explored the site much at all, but let me know if you find it helpful....

One of my father-in-law's favorite songs was Cattle Call by Eddy Arnold. It contained some great yodeling. Here's a little sound clip of Cattle Call.

picture of Americana

Each year when I'm gearing up for a new school year, I visit the beloit.edu site to see what the frame of reference of this year's freshmen will be.

From Beloit's long list, here are some of my favorite bits of information about this year's freshmen:

States and Velcro parents have always been requiring that they wear their bike helmets.

The only significant labor disputes in their lifetimes have been in major league sports.

There have nearly always been at least two women on the Supreme Court, and women have always commanded U.S. Navy ships.

American tax forms have always been available in Spanish.

Amazon has never been just a river in South America.
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Is Cursive Dying?


picture of practice writing

I have noticed in recent years that fewer of my college students turn in work written in cursive. This past week I did an survey in my classes and discovered that only 15% of my students write mostly in cursive. In fact, one student said that the only thing she knows how to write in cursive is her signature.

At the time my wife and I were growing up in northwestern Ohio, we were taught the Zaner-Bloser method of writing cursive, beginning in second grade. I remember hardly being able to wait to learn it so that I could write like the older kids and grown ups.

Here's what the Zaner-Bloser letters and numbers that we were supposed to emulate looked like:

picture of Zaner-Bloser cursive

I worked hard to perfect that skill and have been told through the years that I had neat handwriting, for a guy. A few years ago some of my students were having a hard time reading what I'd written on the board and the overhead. I attributed it to my handwriting, rather than to the fact that I'd written in cursive. I think now, though, that it was actually the cursive that was throwing some of my students. Here's what my writing looks like — I'll let you decide whether it's legible.

picture of my handwriting

I do understand the frustration of some students, though. The semester I took Chinese, our teacher was out for part of the semester on maternity leave. The substitute teacher wrote on the board one day in Chinese cursive. I was having a hard enough time reading Chinese characters as it was, let alone throwing cursive into the mix!

Our children went to Bob Jones Elementary School where they were taught precursive then later cursive using the handwriting curriculum from the BJU Press.

Here's a sample of what PreCursive looks like:
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Back to School!


picture of back-to-school stuff

What do you / did you like best about starting back to school? When I was a child, I think that my favorites were the smell of new pencils and erasers, new paper in my notebook outfitted with dividers for that year's classes, putting book covers on that year's textbooks, and new back-to-school clothes. As a teacher I still love back to school, but for very different reasons. I love seeing my students from previous years who are still in the university — especially if they're in my classes. I love meeting my new students, looking forward to forging some friendships that will go into the future.

I woke up this morning at 5:05, awake as I am now, so I decided to get up and post a special first-day-of-classes iv. I'm sure I'll pay for this this evening when I struggle to stay awake till bedtime.... 🙂

This year it will be fun to watch the reactions of returning students to the new furniture in our classroom, generously provided by the school's alumni. It looks so fresh and roomy — we went from a crowded room with 59 desks to just 35 seats. Ah, room to move around! Here are two pictures of the classroom in which I teach French.
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