evaluation squared: evaluating my evaluation process

Last week, I experimented with administering my anonymous informal evaluations on-line.  I ran it pretty much as described here, with one exception: I did not hold them accountable (by requiring them to self-report their completion) for returning an evaluation.

I deem this semester’s experiment a failure.  Even though I received good quality feedback, the rate of return was too low for my taste. But, several pleasant surprises and good experiences with this format make me want to try it again next semester with some tweaks. Continue reading

Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” (leaps in I and V)

Tomorrow’s activity will work with Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire,” a tune I love because of the meter switches, timbres, and the way he makes fire and higher rhyme.

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Everything I needed to know I learned in …

…my daughter’s kindergarten class.  Well, not really.  But, I did learn a lot from volunteering a few hours a week last year.  Most of it is not applicable in this post, but here is one strategy that my daughter’s kindergarten teacher used that I admired and will be trying out tomorrow: personalized goals. Continue reading

Acquiring Basic Skills

Do you remember those timed multiplication table tests in elementary school?  The kind where you do the 2s, and then the 3s, all the way through the 9s.  You earned a start on a public chart when you mastered each flavor of multiplication, and mastery was defined by getting a specific number of answers correct within a strict time period (1 minute is what I remember).  Even though today it seems somewhat old-fashioned and a mite-bit draconian, it worked.  It worked. As I’m teaching the first semester of a four-semester course, there are certain parallels with basic knowledge acquisition. So, I’ve been experimenting a bit with this old fashioned model. Continue reading