For the last three days, I’ve done nothing but read student portfolios.
Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration. I did other things. I drank some tea. I ate some meals. I took a shower.
I stepped outside to look at the meteor showers. I went to some meetings. I taught some classes. I saw my husband in passing. I drove my youngest son to school.
But mostly, I’ve been focused on getting through the portfolios. I wanted to give them back to students in class tomorrow so they would still have time to make an appointment with me before Thanksgiving if they had questions about their grade. I want to be able to enjoy Thanksgiving break next week with a clear conscience, with no backlog of student papers.
My students are smart and creative – and they’re pretty good writers. I’ve read all kinds of papers in the last 72 hours, mostly focused on environmental issues. I’ve read about wind turbines and photovoltaic cells and biodiesel fuel. They’ve been proposing solutions, ways to save the earth.
Spending every waking minute immersed in student papers leaves me feeling dazed, overwhelmed, and oddly hopeful.