Continuing this quixotic exercise, here is the third entry (of seven) chronicling One Week in the Life of an English Professor (hi, there!). Â As noted on the first post, the goal is to make visible just what the heck it is someone like me actually does. Â Such labor was invisible to me when I was an undergraduate – and, while I had more of an inkling as a graduate student, I was still largely clueless.
Monday, 20 Feb. 2011.
12:20 – 6:35 am. Â Asleep. Â Dreamed of Maurice Sendak.
7:10 am. Read, over breakfast (in A.J. Jacobs‘ The Know-It-All) this morning, that Descartes liked to sleep until 11 am. Â I don’t think I’d be capable of sleeping that long (unless I were sick). Â But it does sound luxurious.
7:35 – 8:10 am. Â Office. Â Reading email, answering email. Â Noticing comments on blog (both on blog itself and on Facebook). Â People (well, a few people, at least) seem to find this project worthwhile. Â So, that’s gratifying!
8:10 – 9:20 am. Â Prepared the English 355 (Literature for Children) class – it’s Seuss, so I know the material well. Â But it’s helpful to revisit & rethink it. Â Also answered email – related to students, and to panel I’m co-organizing. Â And briefly checked in toÂ Twitter.
9:20 – 10:30 am. Â Assembled second class pack for English 703 (Critical Approaches to Children’s Literature). Â The students are going to need to have this in a couple of weeks. Â High time I got it ready! Â And, yes, answered more email. Â In writing this, I realize how much of my day is spent multitasking.
10:30 am. Â Student in to take missed quiz. Â When student misses quiz due to legitimate reason (illness, death in family, professional obligation, deployment of family member in military, etc.) and that student is responsible (i.e., reminds me promptly), I try to arrange for quiz to be taken. Â Key is getting student to take it before I hand quizzes back. Â I don’t want to make up an entirely new quiz.
10:35 – 11:19 am. Â Reviewed & expanded notes for English 703 (Critical Approaches to Children’s Literature). Â Student taking quiz finished. Â I graded said quiz, recorded grade. Â Thanks to Cheryl Klein‘s Twitter feed, read Ta-nehisi Coats’ piece on “Presidents Day.” Â Turned in that new class pack to Copy Center. And more email: Responded to Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics) re: Complete Barnaby. Â Left for class — I like to arrive early so I can get set up.
11:30 am – 12:20 pm. Â TaughtÂ English 703 (Critical Approaches to Children’s Literature). Â Pleased with how it went. Â Will blog about it in future, but not this week! Â Chronicling my days is consuming my blogging time.
12:35 – 1:15 pm. Â Lunch (in office). Â Also: another student came by to take missed quiz. Â And I reviewed for next class. Â Decided to give quiz today, rather than Wednesday. Â (I’d been on the fence about which day to do it.)
1:30 – 3:20 pm. Â Taught two sections of English 355 (Literature for Children), back to back. Second one was recorded for use in conjunction with the university’s on-line version of the class.
3:25 – 3:40 pm. Â Â Invented new quiz for student who missed quiz I just handed back. Â I really prefer not to do this, but student had been ill & traveling, had communicated this absence in advance, and the quiz was less than a week old, … and I felt sympathetic.
3:30 – 5:00 pm. Â Office hours. Â Student took the quiz. Â I answered student email — all from students who missed today’s quiz, and whom I will thus give a chance to make up as soon as possible. Â Responded to comments on yesterday’s blog post. Â Wrote more Complete Barnaby-related emails. Recorded a few stray quiz grades – I discovered (in class) that I’d missed a few quizzes, & I graded them while students took their new quizzes (in class).
5:00 – 5:30 pm. Â A little more Barnaby stuff. Â More email answered. Â Also worked on this blog! Â And at 5:30 checked in with Karin … who had previously reported an anticipated departure time of 5:10 pm.
5:45 – 6:10 pm. Headed home. Once there, checked mailbox (forgot today is a holiday), brought in Manhattan Mercury, changed out of professor costume (slacks, jacket, and tie) into non-work clothes (jeans, jersey/shirt).
6:10 – 7:20 pm. Â During dinner prep, read to Karin – up into chapter 3 of Bradley’sÂ The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. Â The plot thickens! Â During dinner, watched the 16 Feb. Daily Show (with Brian Williams). And, of course, only the reading part of this might count as work-related.
7:20 – 8:50 pm. Email check, & sent one that I meant to send yesterday. Â Quick FB check — the news continues to be very depressing. Â Pell Grants cut, too? Â Those plus Work/Study jobs helped me through college. Â To do something productive, I attempted to order pizza for those protesting Wisconsin’s governor via Ian’s Pizza on State’s Facebook page (but failed via both links – will try again tomorrow).Â Â Sent out reminder for Reading Matters (English Dept. newsletter, which I edit). Â Need to get the March issue out next week. Â Assembled some material already sent in for the newsletter, & sent acknowledgments to contributors.
8:50 – 10:00 pm. More email. Â Work-related.
10:00 – 10:40 pm. Listened to music & tinkered with mixes (not work-related, obviously), also answered email (only one was work-related).
10:40 – 11:10 pm. Â Wrote a couple of paragraphs of “Radical Children’s Literature Now!”, the piece that (as I mentioned yesterday), Julia Mickenberg and I are working on for this summer’s Children’s Literature Association conference. Â And then… called it a day.
Total work today: 11.5 hours. Â I think that’s right. Â If my calculations are off, please do correct me. Â Thank you.
More posts on academia fromÂ Nine Kinds of PieÂ (this blog):
- How to Publish Your Book; or, The Little Manuscript That Could. Â These strategies have worked for me.
- How to Publish Your Article. Â The “prequel” to the above.
- Never Say Die: A Mix for Job-Seekers. Â Because you might need a little encouragement.
- Procrastigrading; or, How to Grade Efficiently. Â One solution to the scourge of grading. Â The main drawback is that it also involvesÂ actual grading.
- Fortunate Failures; or, How I Became a Scholar of Dr. Seuss. Â When academe gives you lemons, make green eggs and ham.
- The Art of PowerPoint: A User’s Guide. Â PowerPoint doesn’t have to suck. Â Trust me.
- How Did I Get Here? Part I: Up from Adjuncthood. Â Academic autobiography.
- How Did I Get Here? Part II: Into Professorland. Â Academic autobiography, Part Deux.
- Mash-Up vs. Purple Crayon. Â There are many paths to success.