This semester was full of ups and downs. I went through a few jobs, a lot of emotions, and so many papers. I made my fair share of poor decisions like putting off important work but overall I am incredibly proud of myself for making it through another semester. I am a senior and next semester I will be completing my student teaching. I actually found out this week that my placement will be at Bensalem High which is two blocks from my house, a miracle. Although a part of me is somewhat fed up with school, considering I am 5 years in and most of my friends graduated, I have been considering grad school a lot lately. I am so grateful I live a life where I am able to get a higher education.
I spent this week completing my final paper. The only part I needed to finish was my argument which happened to be the most important part of my paper. I had four claims spread throughout my argument section and I spent more time than I would like calculating how many pages needed to go into each claim. When I finally ended up writing the paper the ideas and sources were flowing so naturally that I really did not need to keep track of silly things like word counts and page numbers. Finding the ideas I needed out of the books I used was finding a needle in a haystack but fortunately I did not put off this part. So 90% of my ideas were backed up by facts and my synthesis of the facts made sense in my notes. All I had to do was put my ideas into the paper in a conventional and consistent manner. Oh the dread I had for this looming paper that knocked at my door every evening. Oh the shame I felt when I would put off the work or call an early night when I had the time to work on the paper. I was afraid of finishing it because I was afraid it would not be enough. I was afraid I would fail myself.
Now I am proud of the work I accomplish. While it certainly would be nice to pass the class (why else would I be up this late doing blogs), in my eyes I already succeeded. I buckled down and completed ALL of the work that needed to be done. Not just for this class but for all my classes. I am proud of the paper I submitted today, even if it was not reviewed as much as I would have like. Yeah maybe it is missing a few commas and maybe I used a bit of passive voice here in there. I am still satisfied with my ideas and how they come together. I am satisfied with what I was able to present to my peers and I will be satisfied getting whatever grade I deserve. Thanks for reading through these blogs professor and thank you classmates for enduring this semester together.
I have been leaning a bit into the humor in my last couple of blogs to keep myself motivated. I like to laugh about everything in life as much as possible. I just feel like everyone is so negative around me so I try and look at the bright side and find humor in things others can’t. In this case I am laughing at how I put myself in a time crunch situation.
Week 12 tasked us with having a full draft revised. I did not even have a completed draft at this point. Admittedly I did not have a completed draft until around 1pm today. So I spent this week completing assignments for other classes. I took an Imperialism class with professor Ricketts, there was a lot of research papers for her class but the prompts were very broad. I found myself quickly asking and answering questions about much of the world like India, Haiti and France. I took a Modern World History class with professor Spodek and there were daily discussion boards to try and keep up with. I took a War and Peace class with professor Fischer who seemed young enough to be a grad student but I cannot remember. That class was pretty easy but it was a freshman level course so keeping up with the assignments was light work, not to discredit professor Fischer because I did learn a lot in the class. Finally I took Effective Use of Technology with professor Shapiro and this was my third attempt at the course so if I failed or withdrew than I would literally have to drop out of the college of Education, so staying ahead of that work was a priority.
I spent week 12 prioritizing and reprioritizing my work load and cutting into the work I was behind as much as possible. Hopefully my prioritizations pay off.
Jeez 25 minutes is cutting it a bit close huh? Completing assignments like this makes me feel like Indian Jones sliding under the closing door. I think it was that movie.
Week 11 tasked us with completing our full draft which means it was time for me to get to work. I spent most of this week refining my introduction, conclusion, and historiographies. I could not conceptualize the idea of me meeting the word requirement for the assignment so I aimed to stretch these portions out as much as I could without filling it with BS. I am actually really satisfied with how my final paper turns out but determining the quality of my work has yet to come. I structured my paper in segments initially and I am not sure why because I usually don’t do that. By this I mean I included a lot of headings and subheadings. Jayne (bless her) gave me a last minute peer review and advised I remove that and lean more into a paper that flows. Ultimately it was my decision and getting rid of headings just seemed to be the move. So this blog goes out to all the headings and subheadings out there: thank you for telling me what comes next.
This week we were supposed to take the week off (somewhat) from the assignment and come back next week to complete the full draft. Maybe I spent a bit too much time off knowing I had time to finish my paper. Pic related.
I usually have this problem. Once I think about my assignment and outline it and rationalize a schedule to complete it I start to deem an assignment easy. “Easy” assignments can be put off because I know that I am capable of completing them. I just always seem to forget that there is a time limit on my assignments. And boy do I really like to crunch time as you can see. So for this week I think I spent time outside and with my family. We are really close and live in a bit of a cramped apartment so in a way we are always spending time with each other. I am grateful for that.
GOodness gracious my hands hurt. I played a lot of video games during early COVID-19 and actually had some serious carpal tunnels in my wrists to the point where I put them in wrist braces for a month. This has been the most stressed my wrists have been since then. Aren’t I too young to be suffering for my art?
This is actually my favorite part of the semester because it is finally that time to get all that procrastinated weight off my shoulders. It also generally feels good to be productive. Week 9 tasked us with completed our second mini draft which means it was my time to finish my first mini draft. I completed a pretty sturdy introduction which is honestly my favorite part of my paper. It ended up coming to two or three pages, the longest introduction I have ever written. This was because there just seemed like so much to introduce. First Ancient Egypt, then the religion, then the afterlife and mythology. Explaining things is so much easier than synthesizing your own ideas. Sometimes I wish I could go back to when books were rewritten by hand. That would be a dream job now.
By this point I felt like I was making a comeback on the scene of my project. Oh how wrong I was.
This was the week we needed to have our first draft done. This also happened to be the week I both decided to catch up and fell further behind. I think I had a few other big projects due that week that were a bit more pressing. Hindsight I should have just managed my time better. So for my mini draft 1 I submitted my historiography and my outline with an introduction paragraph. I personally believe that organizing both my historiography and my outline into one document was a really good thing. In fact, every draft from this point until my final submission was done on the same document. For some reason that makes me feel all sentimental.
Pic related, the clock is ticking. I doubt I will get all my blog submissions in by midnight. Hopefully Professor Lowe blesses me with mercy. So this one is for you Professor.
I am sure anyone reading this is just as busy as I am tonight. Good luck to everyone!
I just realized that this may be the last History Class I take. When I started college 3+ years ago, I told myself that I would take only classes that I wanted to take. I wanted to major in history and I only wanted to take history and I would not fill it with BS. For the most part I did not do that. Almost every class I have ever taken I had some interest in it though. Yes the ones that were required were a little harder to take something that excites a late 30’s father of 3, but I somehow managed. It was nice to get to know a few of you from multiple classes and cool to see that either our interest align or schedules at least.
All of the classes though I have taken that were history related are the ones that I tried the hardest in. This is where the point of my final blog comes in. College for the most part is a scam. If we only took the classes that were in our major, we’d all have been done at least a year ago. I left Bucks County Community College with 54 credits. Of those 54, 21 credits were “required.” None of them were history classes. three of them were writing classes. I enjoyed them and the professor. I also took psychology, statistics and a microbiology class. The final required class was Public Speaking. I get it, some people are afraid to speak in large groups. My answer to this is “Grow up.” Only weirdos get all nervous when they have to communicate in public.
Young people today are always wanting “Free, Free, Free.” Free college, free Wi-Fi, free whatever. College should not be free. What college should be is not a scam. There is at least one of you in this class that will serve politically one day. Do not give kids college for free. If anything tell them they do not have to take a class called “Hollywood VS Geology: How Real are Disaster Movies?” I took it last semester. Do not get me wrong, it was interesting but it has zero to do with what I am paying the college to give me a degree in. So do future generations like my kids a favor and instead of making college free, make it so they pay for what they want.
I now know though that if the Meteor in “Armageddon” struck the Philadelphia Area and I lived in Bozeman Montana then the windows of my house would blow out and my trees would burst into flame 7 seconds after impact.
Despite my grade and the massive amounts of catching up I had to do this semester (again totally the Professor’s fault) I thoroughly enjoyed the class and its content. All of you are exceptional people and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.
I enjoyed hearing your topics and am thankful that you sent me your papers in their rough forms to read and offer input. I also wanted to thank you guys as well for offering the feedback on mine. I never really cared either way whether or not somebody ready my paper and enjoyed it or not.
You are all scholars and ladies and gentlemen and I thank you.
With 2 hours to go, I am drinking a Rum and Coke and cranking out what I hope to be 28 points worth of Blogs. I typed up 6987 words over the last week and a half and even then I was still trying to find a way to slack off. I worked over 40 hours this week, cut my grass (twice actually) laid down 40 bags of mulch, transplanted 6 plants, planted a tomato and pepper garden, washed my truck (again twice) went to the city for a court hearing that was subsequently changed to another date and did two other papers and a final exam.
Through all of this though I still went fishing once. You would think that after all of that hard work and dedication the Gods would have granted something better than this…
If there is one thing that I see in young adults it is the inability to do math in their heads. So my 14 year old comes home with a C in math. His mother goes absolutely bananas on him, even though she can’t compute her Dice with Friends score without a calculator. I am and always was good at Math…Normal human math. What I mean by that is the 4 big ones. Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Throw in a few fractions and decimals here and there and I can still run with the big dogs.
So my son comes home and he gets his rear-end chewed out. She takes away his Xbox and makes him do a couple chores. After this happens and my wife goes to work I sit him down and I tell him that his grade is not really that big of a deal as long as he understand the subject matter. Laziness does not mean he will be counting with his fingers in his early 20’s. I give him a simple scenario…
“If your father still needs 4 blog posts to be graded for and he averages a 7 on each of them, how many points is that?”
“Good. Now add that to 102 and you get ?”
“Excellent. Now 130 out of 192 is roughly what?”
“I do not know, like 65%”
“Close, it is 68%. My final paper is worth 100 points so that means the course total is 292 points. What do I need to get on my final paper to get a C in the class.”