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Jeopardy, coffee and cookies

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Gameboard for tomorrow’s In-class Jeopardy

Now I’ve done it.

I often feel like saying things out loud is a curse against me. I’m expecting to get up early and make some fresh coffee and cookies for tomorrow’s Micro Exam #1 Review.  But, with the curse and all, I do worry…

The one thing I do have going in my favor is a longing for chocolate chip cookies. For some reason I have not been baking as much lately, but I’ve been trying to get back in the habit. The last two weekends I have made bagels though, so perhaps it will happen.

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Bagel Recipe adapted from Laurel’s Kitchen Bread Book

So, tomorrow, after two cancelled classes due to inclement weather:

Micro: Open review of all material, discussion of the next chapter in Vaccinated (hmmm, I’ve lost track of where we are…), quiz on the last chapter of this unit(Ecology, growth and nutrients) and then potential exam question jeopardy.

General Bio: Continue / finish  cell division and cancer (both covered in chapter 5 of the text), then discussion of the latest chapter of Your Inner Fish (again, I’m at a loss. The chapter after teeth…).

I’d get up and check these things, but I am trapped under a large, sleeping cat who is known to be ferocious when disturbed, so I’d rather keep my hands.

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Something Extra

2001

“Open the pod bay doors Hal.”…”I’m afraid I can’r do that…Um, I’m sorry, what’s your name?”

Something surprised me during our Jeopardy review for the final exam the other day. I always have an extra column of questions that aren’t related to anything – Potpourri – for things that I consider as silly extra credit fluff. This year, I included a question about the Kubrick film, 2001: A Space Odyssey and I don’t think anyone in the room had even heard of it. (My generation has truly passed by and is fading into irrelevancy) Kubrick was one of the most influential directors of our time – even though, in retrospect a lot of what he did was way over the top and pretty repetitive for anyone who’s seem more than one or two of his films.

Nevertheless, I promise to have at least one – probably two Kubrick films mentioned in the extra credit. So, if you’re in my class take a moment to remember this director.

Yeah, that, and somehow Joanie Loves Chachi got in there too.

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I once had my photo taken with this chap in Bamberg. Unfortunately, I seem to have lost it.

 
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Posted by on December 13, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Semester’s End

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Our Jeopardy-themed final exam review

It’s the last week of the Fall 2012 Semester and I’ve been spending a lot of time working on getting the final exam written and edited, making sure all my students’ papers are graded and accounted for and putting together a good review session complete with a double batch of chocolate chip cookies and a pot of coffee.

Attendance was really down today because a lot of my students are sick (actually I am pretty ill as well) and our review day is actually not an official school day anyway, so I couldn’t even guilt students into attending. Nevertheless, I thought the cookies were good, the coffee was hot and our review session Jeopardy went very well.

There were only a few times today that I felt driven to drink as we went through a semester’s worth of material and tried to untangle any remaining confused lines of reasoning and replace them with what I hope are clear principles. This is the time of year that I think, “All I want is for them to understand a few key ideas,” but the reality is that key ideas are hard to examine – tests have to cover the details of some specific condition, and I just hope they exemplify the important points.

Mostly, what I want to say to any of my students who might read this, is ‘Thanks for taking my class. I hope you learned something this semester that makes you look at the world a little differently. I look forward to seeing some familiar faces in Microbiology next semester, but if I don’t have you in class again, I wish you all the best.’

 
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Posted by on December 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Stuck at 98%

I’ve been procrastinating – with a lot of things really.

The one that brought me to writing this is that I am 98% finished the codecademy Javascript course with only the Blackjack game remaining. And I’ve already put a lot into that as well. I just need to get off my lazy ass and finish it. Instead, I’ve allowed myself to get distracted by the new courses in python and ruby. I think I’m going to have to set aside a night and get this finished though.

The problem has been that I put javascript aside for long enough that I’m starting to forget the syntax. I think tonight I’ll print out a couple of my old syntax guides (perhaps update them and post them here) and get back in the saddle.

I also have an ePublishing workshop coming up this Thursday. My (biology) class has been given the day off and I’ve hired a babysitter so that I can go. In my mind it is a good way to network with some people who are interested in ePublishing but not comfortable enough to jump in and hopefully learn some things too.

I’ll be taking the iPad with The Thirteenth Labor of Heracles as a demonstration of a finished product and I’m hoping to have The Curse of Sisyphus far enough along that it can be demonstrated as well. I like the way The Curse is coming along – it incorporates more self-testing opportunities than the Thirteenth Labor. I’m also looking into how to develop my own widgets (another project! Great!), but realistically, I recognize that this is probably a long way off for me. I would love to be able to develop a more versatile version of the interactive image widget to use with mathematical equations.

Oh right, I’m also supposed to preparing for an exam! I’ve written all of about ten questions so far and haven’t even looked at my Jeopardy – review yet. And then the lab… damn. I did make that promise didn’t I?

Well, let’s just see how things go one day at a time.

One last thing: My wife is away for what amounts to two weeks. Day one – two minutes after she left: Dingleberry on the dog. I don’t think the cat has realized what’s up yet because I haven’t found any surprises.

 
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Posted by on October 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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