Category Archives: Teaching

Joe Update

I wrote about my GED student Joe back in November, when I recounted our travails in trying to get him some extra time for the test, due to a learning disability originally diagnosed when he was nineteen. We weren’t able … Continue reading

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I Am Beset by a Grammatical Dilemma

In the winter semester (they call it “spring,” but, um, no), I teach a writing seminar at an institution I’ll call the More Prestigious University, or MPU. It’s a choosy place, which selects students carefully based on grades and high … Continue reading

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Rescinding Opportunity

There’s a new GED (high-school equivalency) in town, promoting itself as “a new comprehensive program.” The old GED test, phasing out next month, consisted of readings and multiple choice questions, often very challenging, in the areas of science, reading, and … Continue reading

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An Irksome Question

There are three weeks left in this semester, and after class today a student asked me one of my least favorite questions. “Will the final cover the whole semester,” she wondered, “or just since the midterm?” This question might make … Continue reading

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A Bureaucratic Odyssey

Here’s a circuitous tale. It concerns a certain GED student in the program where I volunteer.  I’ll call him Joe. I could write a book about Joe, but suffice it to say he’s a very deserving guy, someone who has … Continue reading

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Gilmour, Eh

Through that chain of connections we call the internet, I happened upon a Canadian controversy. It seems that one David Gilmour, a part-time English professor at the University of Toronto, has outraged a bunch of people by declaring that he’s … Continue reading

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All Roads Lead to Rome

My Latin students never know what’s in store for them. Some days it’s a tedious review of demonstrative pronouns, and other days a fascinating account of my medical problems. Today they heard about my feet. That’s because yesterday I received … Continue reading

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What We Talk about When We Talk about Education

  For about seven years, I have taught a seminar at Case Western Reserve on progressive education and school reform. (Its formal title, believe it or not, is “Schoolhouse Rocked.”) At the beginning, I hoped to introduce my students to … Continue reading

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Better Than Science

In my Latin class today, I shared a reading about Proserpina and Ceres (Persephone and Demeter, in Greek). I find it necessary to debunk all that the scientific mumbo-jumbo about the seasons, relating to planets and stars and orbits. Forget, I tell … Continue reading

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A Collection of Choosers

I discussed the electoral college with my Latin students today, apropos of the Presidential election, of course, and described its Roman historical and etymological roots. As a break from our essential but enervating grammar explanations, such a lesson passes as … Continue reading

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