Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Grading the week

I was going to write a week in review type thing, but my week was too boring to review. Since I've been grading and grading and grading over the last week, instead I will assign my week a grade. My week earns about a B- for being boring. I put in the necessary effort to make the week run smoothly, but it was nothing spectacular.

But then as I think back on the week, perhaps I am being too hard on myself. Tim was gone much of the last week. Therefore I earned my grade as Single Mom Lady. Doing a week single should count extra. A- for effort, for doing it alone.

On the other hand, who realistically receives an A- for effort? It's the end product being graded, not the time spent. And why give extra credit for doing the project alone when the assignment sheet explicitly states that it should be done with a partner? B- is generous here. (And yes, we are way too cruel to single parents.)

But even giving myself slack for being single, I still can't give myself an A, because I never did clean the bathroom, or identify that strange smell emanating from the back of the refrigerator. On the other hand, I kept up on the dishes and laundry. I even vacuumed the living room. And the beds were made daily. Mostly. That should earn at least a B. It's not like we're violating health standards yet with the funky refrigerator.

Plus I get all sorts of extra credit for making things work this week in particular. I had to attend two weekend events for work, so I found a babysitter Friday night, and strung out a playdate Saturday afternoon. Friday evening I gave a successful talk (two down, four still to go), and Saturday I watched a couple of my students also give a very successful talk on the research they've been doing with me. Way to go students! Ten points extra credit right there for my first research students ever and their highly successful presentation. You get to earn points for things other people do well, too, provided you helped contribute.

And let's talk quality time. Jonathan and I spent several hours in the backyard, digging and cutting and planting. I did the digging and cutting, removing the last of the holly and brambles, and he planted sticks in the ground and called them trees. We read several chapters together of a book. He wrote a page in his journal. We painted in the kitchen on big paper. We were on time all week and I was on time and I never once forgot to pick him up. We ate full meals three times a day, including vegetables, and dessert once.

I was not able to play house with him Sunday morning -- migraine coming on, and so I was docked points for that. But I took him to his favorite sleazy restaurant and let him play all over the playground Saturday after the playdate. He was 4 inches taller than the 48 inch cutoff for the restaurant playground. But his six year old friend, nearly a head shorter than he is, invited him to join in, and so we all conveniently ignored the sign with the height limit. HA! I don't know if that event earns extra points for my ability to think outside the box, or docked points for not following instructions. I guess it will come down to the grader's opinion there.

We flew a kite Monday afternoon in the stiff breeze that made my bike commute painful. Bonus points for kite flying. I commuted by bike, even in the wind. Double extra points. Except Friday and Saturday I drove back and forth and back and forth from my office 12 times, ten to fifteen minutes each way. That put a lot of harmful emissions in the air. Double docked points.

I read a book. Bonus points! Except it was written for 12 year olds. Negative points. I helped Jonathan write a book. Bonus! Except first I caved and let him spend extra time on the computer. Negative points. I woke up early each weekday. Bonus! But I stayed up late as well. Double negative points.

You see, in all, it was a boring week. I think the extra points and the negative points pretty much cancel themselves out, leaving me with a slightly inflated B- for the week. But I'm proud of that. Pretty excellent B- week, if I do say so myself.

Final comment: It's good to have Tim home again.


Mother Eagle said...

Calculated as only a mathematician could.

Soul-Fusion said...

hmmm, I was considering making an attempt to grade my week but since I have been completely baffled by what day of the week it is pretty much every day, I think my grade will be pretty low so I would rather not know.