squish planning
monday, october 30, 2006

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nothing managed on the .net -- the site is back up, but there are issues still preventing me from accessing much. it does appear, however, that much of my spam comes from the .net, so once it's settled i'll be blackholing my email addy there and see if that lets me keep my .com addy unchanged. we shall see.

didn't write either. just didn't have it in me. besides, i did have 4 stories that needed subbing somewhere and it took me all afternoon to find markets that would work for them. and since the cover letters are all already written, i didn't have to worry about having to do any rewrites to cover crappy writing.

what i did manage to do today was plan out the remainder of the quarter. things will probably have to adjust and change as we go along -- these particular kids are so slow! -- but at least the overall is pretty much done. and that allowed me to figure out what days i need to reserve the media center and computer lab for the one major project they are doing for the current unit. i also needed to figure out what i was cutting from the unit since we're 2 weeks behind and everything has to be done by the friday before christmas break. nothing is to be held over from semester 1 to semester 2 at all. which meant a lot of squishing -- removing of chapters or parts of chapters. for me this means most of my major planning is done -- all i'll have to do is tweak here and there, and maybe do a little prep (creating worksheets and quizzes and such). and it gives me a nice overview of everything.

my only real concern is that i don't really cover specific countries and their governments. we'll be doing a broad look at western europe, eastern europe, and russia, and go into a little bit on the cultures. the only thing that makes up for is their european countries projects, but each kid will only be exposed to one country. the project itself is taking up 14 days of what we have left, scattered over the next 2 months (a day in the media center here, a day in the comp lab there -- makes me glad i gave them the folders to keep stuff in because these kids would lose everything with the way we have to do this). the teacher originally had something like 10 chapters for them to cover (suggested), but there's no way to go over more than a chapter in a day. i'll just have to look everything over again, see if i can cut a media center day closer to the end of the project and try to add a day that goes over the various kinds of governments found in europe and russia. or maybe cut yet another chapter from somewhere.

beyond all that, i created a european countries map quiz -- used the countries that seem to be the best known rather than the more obscure stuff they may never have heard of before this. i'm about to create a page for a countries presentation based on their projects, probably ungraded since the last week is kind of a "dead" week -- meaning all the grades are in and there's not much more to do. i want to keep the presentations short, maybe 5-10 minutes since there isn't a whole lot of time that last week. it's just something to fill the time that doesn't require me to provide anything for a party or whatever. of course, the presentation will look important to their grades -- if it doesn't, not only will the kids not do it, but they'll also get out of hand. they'll be crazy enough with the holidays around the corner!

even though i do end up cutting out about half the chapters (although, i did pick up another chapter from a secondary book -- it covered culture in general better than the main textbook does), i do think i squished things pretty good. there's an overview of europe in general -- climate and all that, then there's a little bit about each larger area. if i had another week, i might actually have even managed a couple of specific countries and governments. at least the kids will have some of the basics. and with time being what it is, sometimes that's the best you can do. sometimes there's just not as much room as you want even when squishing.

so, everything's planned -- squished, but planned. and now i need to get to bed. my ride will be here 45 minutes earlier than i'm used to elaving my house. maybe all that planning could have waited, but i needed to know what had to be squished to avoid being haphazard over the next few weeks.

word of the moment: implosion

the violent inward collapse of a vessel or structure resulting from the external pressure being greater than the internal pressure; total economic or political collapse, e.g. as a result of poor management and financial insolvency; the initial occluded phase of a stop consonant

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