Today my sophomores performed their third set of comprovisations, incorporating sequences for the first time. In between classes I shot one of my students and got stabbed in the neck by another, taking me out of the game. After classes I went over to the Union building for a faculty forum, including free lunch. After eating and discussing the evolution of language and music with some colleagues, I gave a very short presentation on students submitting self-recordings for homework. The forum topic was on how to deal with student absences due to illness, sports, or other reasons. I wasn't thinking about these reasons when I decided to have students record themselves sight singing with Audacity and submit the recordings as mp3s on our online course management system (Moodle). Instead, I was just trying to figure out a way to give 25 students in a musicianship class enough opportunities to perform for evaluation. With recordings, I can grade 50 students in 30 minutes, because the recordings remove all of the "ums," restarts, and other time eaters from lack of preparedness or nerves. It would take me at least three class periods, probably four, to grade the same number of students, and that would be without any opportunities for dictations or other exercises. But the system I use can also be used to hear oral presentations from absent students.
Right after giving my presentation, I ran back to the music building to play in a brass quintet for a student's senior recital jury. We will be performing Malcolm Arnold's Brass Quintet at the end of the month. Then I went back to the Union to get my laptop, which had been used by the other presenters at the workshop. And then back to the music building to advise two students on their class schedules for next semester and grad school plans, and tutor a student on species counterpoint. I finally had time to start writing the two exams I am giving on Monday for Theory I and III, before going to pick up the kids from school. There was no afterschool program today because of a book fair and pancake supper (see more about that below), so I had to pick them up right before 3 pm. We went home to clean the hamster cage so they would be ready to for show and tell tomorrow, and get dressed for karate class. I also started laundry, which was getting in desperate straits from my extended absence at the conference.
Piano lessons for each of the kids, picking out pieces for the end-of-semester recital. Karate class, hopefully to burn off some of the kids energy, while I continued to work on the exams. Then back to the elementary school for the semiannual fundraising event, the pancake supper. A quick and unsatisfying pancake dinner was followed by a very cute performance by the 2nd graders of music from Seussical the Musical, which the whole school will be seeing this year in Indianapolis. Then a quick visit to the book fair so the kids could burn their allowances on books, then back home for homework and more laundry. Plus playtime with a very antsy dachshund.
Notice how my day was so busy that I started shifting into Twitter/Facebook status-speak? There was no time for subjects or articles! Now the kids are in bed, 2/3rds of the laundry is folded and put away, and I have a tired dachshund curled up on my lap. My grammar is slowly coming back again. Good night!