22 August 2011

Ode to My Wife

As I get ready to publish this particular entry, it's my lovely wife's birthday. She's a great lady whose company I am lucky to have on a daily basis. Angela is a beautiful woman, and she makes me a better man. She endures all of my nonsense, from cartoons to superheroes to cartoon superheroes, and even engages in some of my weirder obsessions like my love for UFC. My wife is a compassionate, empathetic, loving, gorgeous, crazy cool chick that always keeps me on my toes. Without her, my life would be much emptier.

On Monday, we went over the class syllabus and policies for the classroom.

Tuesday, the modified dialectical journals were due. All of the journals will take awhile to grade, so try to keep that in mind when wondering when you'll see those returned. You also took the test on Animal Farm that didn't go so well. Ms. Windt and I are doing our best to see where everyone stands, and we made the mistake of giving you a test that focused more on analysis than whether or not you read, the latter of which was our purpose. Just like you students, teaching itself is a learning process. The plan is to regroup and try again testing-wise next Monday, August 29, this time with a test that focuses on more objective goals.

Wednesday, we made a trip to the library and started taking notes on the different elements of plot. Pay attention to many of these terms as you can apply them while annotating.

We discussed annotation and how to approach it on Thursday. For some of you, this was review, but you'll be applying this idea throughout the school year and your time in the honors program at ALHS. Don't lose the bookmark; it's a valuable tool to focus you any time you read.

Friday, you received the period to annotate.

Monday, we discussed the quotes that everyone chose to exemplify their personal philosophy. Many of you clearly put some thought into your choices. My suggestion is to memorize at least one quote over the course of your life so you can use it at a social gathering to impress friends and acquaintances. Never underestimate the implementation of a good quote at an opportune time.

On Tuesday, you wrote down your own definition of philosophy and your thoughts on the distinction between ethics and morals. From there, we started discussing the three ideas so that we came to a consensus of understanding in the class. For the record, philosophy is the love or study of wisdom while morals deal with feelings of what constitutes good and bad and ethics focus on the actions that are good and bad. This is by no means the be-all and end-all definition of any of the three ideas, but it's a suitable foundation for the class. We began discussing essentialism and relativism but our the bell postponed that for another day.

We finished discussing essentialism and relativism on Wednesday so that you could begin the ethical dilemma questions and made a trip to the library. Remember that essentialism means that there is a line where one can measure right and wrong; the line never changes and anyone in the past who fell on the wrong side of the line was wrong. Relativism posits that right and wrong is completely dependent on the culture and era of the time period and location.

Thursday focused on giving you time to work on the above-mentioned questions.

I was gone on Friday, and you wrote a writing sample.

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