Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Downhill Slide

This has not been a good week--I know, it's only Tuesday, but trust me when I say it's not been a good week. We had a mid-term for this Purchasing class on Monday, and the entire class tanked it. We're really struggling with this stuff, because it is so much information to absorb and so little time with which to make like Sponge Bob. I think stringing 3 courses into 1 class was a bad idea where this one particular class is concerned. Intro to Hospitality and Safety & Sanitation can be taught this way, but the Purchasing stuff needs its own separate class fully devoted to it for an entire quarter. Yeah, yeah, you get all the pain over with at once, but what the hell is the use if you don't get anything out of it? (Geez--I sound like such an adult, don't I?)

At the end of class on Monday, I was perfectly ready to chunk the entire thing and move back into cube world. I called The Man on my way home from class and told him as much. I think the test on Monday and the instructors' reactions to it were sort of the last straw. Chef comes in after the break and says rather snarkily to the class at large that "you'd better study for the quiz tomorrow, because I've just graded your mid-terms." Yep, and evidently we all did piss poorly on it, didn't we? We've been agonizing and trying to communicate for the last couple of classes that we aren't quite getting what the hell they want from us, and it evidently is falling on deaf ears. And, it didn't help matters that Chef was wandering around with a notepad during class and marking down stuff as we were being lectured by the other instructor...made us feel like we were in elementary school again. That may have been what hit me the hardest--dammit, I am not 8, nor is anyone else in the class.

And this stupid method of doing quizzes--we're supposed to read the chapters before the quiz, but there's no discussion of the chapters until AFTER the quiz. I totally get that you want us to READ the stupid book, but can you give us a clue as to what YOU think might be important in the chapter? In my Neaderthal collegiate past, my instructors would assign the chapters to read, discuss the chapters IN CLASS of all places, and then quiz on the chapters. I think this methodology makes sure that the student understands what's important in the chapter AND lets the instructor know that the class is understanding...what a concept.

Evidently, someone must have pointed out that since the whole class tanked the test that it might not reflect well on the teaching method employed in the class, so today Chef comes in all smiles and says we're going to review all the formulas and other crap we've been tortured with for the last 3 classes. The very picture of helpfulness. No mention of the stupid quiz for today, which we all needed to try and bring up our grades from the miserable mid-term. Go figure. So, we spend all class doing what we should have been doing for the last 2-3 class periods, i.e., making sure that we are actually understanding and getting the formulas and conversion factors stuff. Oooh, what a concept. Yeah, I know I'm bitchy today, but dammit, I'm very frustrated with this whole process. Sometimes, you just have to let it all out, and it ain't pretty. Maybe I'm PMSing; maybe I'm not. I do know I'm just mad and frustrated...frustrated and mad...

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