Monday, February 16, 2009

I Was Absent

That was a fairly common response to one of the homework questions. I assigned some homework on Wednesday, had it due Friday, and one of the questions said, "Using the method we learned on Monday, calculateā€¦" And the students who weren't there on Monday just wrote, "I was absent."

A few students in my calculus class have missed a lot of classes. One because of a medical condition that made mobility very difficult (but didn't have any impact on thinking or reading or internetting), others for assorted reasons. They're coming to me to ask about what they've missed. During the entire time that they were absent, they were not downloading the notes off of Blackboard, not reading the textbook, not starting on the problems. It's as if they were taking vacation days and not doing any work.

I'm going to be in northern Virginia on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. (I'll be in McLean for a selection commitee being run by an organization whose name begins with "C" -- hence the 1500+ pages of application materials that I received on Saturday night.) I've already found subs for my classes, given the subs the exams to administer, and read ahead in the notes and the book for the class that I'm taking.