Finding the time to grade stacks of student work has long been a task that requires so much mental energy for instructors to accomplish. As such, I am always looking for ways to become a more efficient grader. There’s little point in taking the time to offer feedback to students if you’re not going to actually provide helpful advice on how they can improve their work. Still, the amount of hours it can take to grade major class assignments can be overwhelming, especially when you’re also balancing all your other responsibilities. Over the years I’ve been teaching, I’ve managed to create a few different strategies that make grading easier (and quicker) without shortchanging how much individual feedback my students receive. So today, I’d like to share with you the five best strategies I’ve used to make grading faster and simpler. If you want to watch/hear about these five tips and two more via video, I have that option, too.Continue reading
Creating innovative classroom assignments can be a struggle when trying to balance all your other responsibilities. It can be easier just to rely on your old faithful assignments, rather than consider how to enliven your syllabus with new assignments that might better engage your students. Today’s post provides a lists of places where you can quickly find inspiration for classroom assignments. It also provides specific examples of my own assignments that have received good results from my students. If you’re looking for new ways to find classroom assignment inspiration, definitely check out this list of five resources. If you’re looking for a place to organize all your ideas, this digital teaching journal might work for you.Continue reading
To finish up the year, I thought I’d focus today’s post on looking ahead and considering how to make the most of the blank slate that comes with January 1st. In my last post, I created a guiding list of questions for any teacher that wants to reflect on the past semester before the next one begins. Today, I go over my top four tips for leading a healthy and balanced life in the new year. I’ve also created a new digital planner for the new year.
The fall 2018 semester is coming to an end. I have one more week of teaching left before the final exam period. As I don’t meet with my students during finals week, I have one more week of campus activities to complete and then a week of grading final projects and miscellaneous activities. November’s shift into December tends to be an extremely stressful time for teachers, especially college instructors whose courses are coming to an end. January is a time to start fresh with new students and new or revised lesson plans. But, we’re not there yet. In today’s post, I’d like to share a few self-care activities specifically for teachers that are wrapping up their classes in preparation for winter break.
Fall semester has officially begun. We’ve found and created tons of resources for our students, and we keep finding more to potentially use in our courses. We’re working on multiple research projects, and we’ve compiled a giant list of resources to read through and potentially cite. We’re getting ready to download student assignment submissions from our LMS’s assignment tab, so that we can access them without needing access to the internet. And, if you’re in the coursework phase of your graduate degree, you also have documents from those classes to keep organized. All-in-all, we’re all likely drowning in .docx, PDFs, .jpegs, and other file types. What we need is to create our ideal digital filing system, so we never have to worry about losing vital documents and we can always know where to find what we’re looking for. In today’s post, I share the steps I’m taking to create my ideal digital filing system, so that you can perhaps adapt them to best fit your own needs. At the end of the post, I provide information about a PDF I created that has six templates designed to help with creating your new system.
Last August, I posted every Friday as part of my back-to-school month series. I’ll be sticking to my usual bi-weekly schedule this year, but last year’s college advice is still relevant, so I’m focusing on those four blog posts today. In case you weren’t reading my blog at that point, I’ve linked and briefly summarized each post here and have added two additional tips for every topic. The first original post includes advice for saving money, the second is all about college classroom tips, the third about kitchen tools and easy recipes, and the last about helpful YouTube channels. I definitely recommend taking the time to read my older posts, especially if you are a college freshman and/or a college [grad] student moving to a new city/state.