Monday, December 20, 2010

Another crazy semester | done

Well, another crazy semester is now done!
This semester was actually quite busy, despite the fact that I started preparing for it over the summer!  I had done most of the readings for my Psycholinguistics course, as well as starting to think about what I wanted to do with my Field Experience Practicum.  Despite all this planning, I ended up taking another route in my practicum, and preparations for my comprehensive exams (which were on my birthday this year) took up all of my available time.

The practicum was an interesting experience. I got to teach the last two classes in a Classical Greek course on campus, in addition to observing the teaching methodology (as well as student reactions to this methodology) throughout the semester.  I did my final research project on putting forth a proposal to teach Classical Greek (and other classical languages for that matter) using communicative approaches that most modern classrooms use.  I also advocated different use of technology - but all of these recommendations would actually necessitate curriculum-wide change.  I tried to present this paper at the on-campus CIT conference this year, but with all the crazyness I ended up missing the deadline - oh well!  I think that I will try to clean up the paper, remove some practicum specific sections, and add sections that expand upon what I wrote, and try to get that published.

Psycholinguistics was also quite fun, except for the last few weeks of the semester that happened to hit everyone like a ton of bricks.  I have to say that I have gained a finer appreciation for interactionists, social-interactionists and connectivists. This course has made me more eager to go out there and read on my own about some of these topics, and newer developments in the field. 

The comps...well...the comps made me realize that my filing system for previous coursework and paperwork (articles, books, handouts) was good as an archive, but not quite as useful as study materials for the comps!  This past semester I realized that I should have, all along, been taking notes about the most important points of each article and book chapter, that way I would have had an easier time going through my notes for the comps - instead of having to skim over most articles to get the main points.  Oh well!  Live and learn!  If I do go for a PhD where comprehensive exams are required, I will be using what I learned here and apply it there.

Now that this program is over (I assume I passed my comps), I want to go back and read some Freire, Foucault and Giroux. Pedagogy of the Oppressed and Teachers as Intellectuals seem like a must read books.  Any other recommendations out there?
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