Saturday, October 06, 2007

Another Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving weekend in Canada has rolled around once more, and our little family is together again. The girls have flown in from the left coast to be with us and the Wee Smudge on her first Thanksgiving. Another first: the little one's French grandmother will join us from Montreal. We haven't previously done this joining together of both sides of the family for a holiday. Hopefully, it will go well and be the first of many.

It was blinkin hot yesterday when we pre-cooked the turkey, and it's cooler, cloudy and rainy today. Thankfully, tomorrow, the day we will celebrate (although the official day is Monday), is predicted to be dry, not too hot and partially sunny. Sounds fine to me.

We've had many fine Thanksgiving feasts, including some recent ones at the cottage with Cuppa's sister and family, but they mostly all blend together — except for one.

It was my first year of teaching. I had been at it for a month when I suddenly realized that I had yet to give a test to any one of my six classes. No doubt I had at least some assignment marks but no test results. So ... in my young foolishness, I decided to remedy that on the Friday before Thanksgiving weekend by presenting all six classes, close to 175 students, with tests.

I soon discovered that was not exactly a good plan!

Not only was it a bad plan to test every class on the same day, but I really didn't yet know how to construct a decent test. Therefore, each was too long: too long to write and too long to mark.

Result: I spent the whole, three-day weekend marking my little, tired brains out. I think I finished late Monday night, just in time to roll exhaustedly into bed to rest up for the resumption of classes on the next day.

Just to show my state of mind during this markathon, let me share this true anecdote with you. I finally and at long last got to a very wonderful paper and exulted over this student who showed such a great grasp of the material and who was able to pen his or her thoughts so concisely yet lucidly. It was perfect! One hundred percent! However, when I tried to record the mark, I discovered that silly me had actually marked my own marking scheme. Can you believe it? The problems didn't end there, of course, for I had to deal with six very unhappy classes who protested vigourously on the next day. Because the tests were poorly constructed, the results were not good, to say the least, and class after class howled its displeasure.

And that, my friends is the story of the one Thanksgiving that clearly stands out in my memory.

7 comments:

Pearl said...

At least you got a perfect grade. lol.

Turkey ready even, this one will be much better... :)

Granny said...

I almost forgot.

A very happy Thanksgiving to all of you.

I'm flying your flag on "granny" today.

-epm said...

I can't believe how fast a year has gone by! It seems like it was just a couple of months ago that I was up in Quebec. To think it's been a whole year.

Gina said...

A very happy Thanksgiving to my Canadian friends!

Coll said...

Thank goodness that thanksgiving is well tucked away in the past. :-)

Have a great and peaceful one A/C

Pam said...

Happy Thanksgiving to my "over the border" friend and your family. I love your teaching story. I wonder if new students ever realize that new teachers have a learning curve, too.

mreddie said...

Hope you had a happy Thanksgiving and I enjoyed the young teacher story. I'm looking forward to our Thanksgiving next month and being with all the family. ec