Spring Semester

January 12, 2011

Well, it’s officially the Spring Semester of my sophomore year though I’m not sure when the spring is going to show up. The first day of school was snow and ice which now visits once a week however it seems it has been a daily escapade.

It has been some time since I blogged about college, perhaps this will give you an idea of what’s going on with my schedule – what keeps my life so busy and why I fall behind in my blogging. 🙂

Spring Semester Reading

Welcome to my Spring Semester reading. These books cost me $503.00, YIKES! I have a total of 6 classes and 12 books. It seems fairly balanced except 1 of those classes requires 6 of these books. I’m in class daily, 5 days a week, from 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. I wasn’t sure I’d like it to begin with, the class hours that is, however it works well – I’m able to get the children to school by 7:50 a.m., work from 8:30 a.m. until 10:30 a.m., and then have one child picked up at 3:30 p.m., get home to prepare dinner while child plays, and then get other child picked up at 5:00 p.m. Once home, we eat, homework, chores, find time to have family time, and all other miscellaneous things done by bed. Then I’m off to tackle my homework for the evening. I’m usually in bed by 12:00 a.m and up at 5:00 a.m. Depending on my personal time for blogging, I may not get to bed until 2:00 a.m. There is no time for anything else. 🙂

Creative Writing: Advanced Fiction

On Monday/Wednesday/Friday I have 3 classes. The first class is Creative Writing: Advanced Fiction with Dr. Hillard. Every Monday I have a Written Response to Readings due which is a 500 word critical commentary on an assigned short story reading. Every other Friday I have a Short Story due. These Short Stories are a first draft which is then copied, put in a packet with the rest of the classmates, distributed to the class, and then critiqued in front of me by everyone. Intimidating! (yet helpful) At the end of the semester I have to submit a minimum 35 page manuscript containing short stories. The page count does not include the cover pages, table of contents, illustrations, and appendix. The manuscript serves as my final exam.

Advanced Public Speaking

From there I then head to my Advanced Public Speaking class with Dr. Lepter, which is a senior-level class. I already had to give an Oral Interpretation of a Fictional Work in front of the class. This week I have an Impromptu Speech to give. This is where the professor will bring in brown paper bags with an unknown object inside. After making my brown bag selection I’ll have to give a 4 minute speech on the object I pull out of the bag. Did I mention there will be 3 of these throughout the semester – YAY ME! (enter sarcasm here) In addition to the Impromptu Speeches, I will be required to give a Tribute Speech, a persuasive Speech, an After-Dinner Speech, and a video taped interview where I’m both the interviewee and the interviewer. In addition, I also need to put together a Speaker’s file which is a collection of stories, jokes, quotes, poems, cartoons, and any other assorted interesting statements that might prove someday useful in speaking. The file should contain a minimum of 5 collections per week, in other words, 1 daily.

Nonverbal Communications

I then head over to my last class for the day, Nonverbal Communications with Professor Welch. Let me just say, I’m learning a lot of interesting things in this class that undoubtedly will end up in a blog – soon. I have 2 papers that must be written for this class, 1 Research Study Presentation (oral report), and several Class Business papers to be written. Class Business is where we find something in the assigned chapter reading and write about it in order to share with the class for discussion.

In addition to all the above listed work assignments, there are also exams the I must study for and pass.

Now for my Tuesday/Thursday classes.

Issues in Science

 I start my day on these days with science, Issues in Science with Dr. Cawthorne to be exact. ICK! There is really nothing that I look forward to in this class. There have been 2 times now that I have caught my head falling, in a nap jerk type fashion, and my eyes seeing multiple around me. I cannot really tell you what I have going on in this class as the professor didn’t see fit to list anything for us on our syllabus. He likes to give us our assignments at the last-minute which I find rather frustrating but for now, it’s working. He does like to do in class experiments which I suppose helps to break-up the mundaneness of it all. The other day we got to stretch a rubber band in effort to prove that the universe is expanding and that we can look back in time… can you spell F-U-N. I don’t know which I like the least, Math or Science. Not true, I certainly know math is at the top of the list however science is immediately below.

Christian Fiction

I then head from there over to Christian Fiction with Dr. Karounos, which is a junior-level class. This would be the class which consist of 6 books – The Power and The Glory, Brideshead Revisited, Diary of a Country Priest, A Bearer of Divine Revelation, A Canticle for Leibowitz, and The Brothers Karamazov. I have quizzes every class on my reading assignments, however those reading assignments are unclear at times. For example, I know what book I’m to be reading but there is no set amount of pages that must be read – pages 1-50, chapters 1-4, etc. I’ve learned however the further along I can read the better off I am. I also have 2, 12-page research papers and 1, 20-page research paper due in this class, arguing some viewpoint on a given story with 10 to 16 sources listed. On a positive note, I have no exams in this class. 🙂

Social Influence

My last class finds me under the instruction of Dr. Lepter again in Social Influence. We’ve already had a heated, yet civil, class debate over the Arizona shooting of Representative Gifford as Palin’s fault for a commercial that was aired. I have 2 Article Summary papers to complete based on journal articles focusing on persuasion/social influence. I also have a group presentation to give using the specific application of persuasive communication theory. I’m not sure I know what that is yet, but it will come together. By the way, this is senior level class.

I believe this covers my class schedule and assignments though things are always changing which keeps me on my toes, well that or falling behind. All-in-all, I’m enjoying my classes – with the exception of science – and am looking forward to growing my knowledge base to a wider, vase understanding – specifically in the areas of reading, writing, and communicating.

Hope you enjoyed the look into my world and will remember me in your prayers as I try to balance all things – I’ll need strength and an unending supply of coffee. 🙂


7 thoughts on “Spring Semester

  1. Penny, I was exhausted and excited for you after reading your life. I will pray for you and your children. I am so proud of you!! God has a plan in all of this as I know you are well aware of. Love you, my friend!

  2. Reading through all this, I found myself a little jealous, wishing I could’ve taken those classes in college (except the Science, of course). How fun! You are learning some great things that will really help you in the future. I don’t envy you having to read The Brothers Karamazov though. I’ve been listening to the audio version of it (38 hours!!!) for months and want to scream sometimes. However, I’m determined to finish it, so I keep plugging away. I can’t figure out yet why it’s considered a classic yet. I think he’s like a soap opera writer, sucking every possible word out of each event until you finally say, “Okay, okay! I get the point!” Of course, it’s our pastor’s favorite book of all time, so he obviously has a much different opinion of it than I do. I’m planning to ask him about it one day soon…

  3. I am proud of you, I know you can do this. Remember how to eat an elephant – one bite at a time. We usually hear these complaints from juniors and seniors – sounds like you have jumped into it early — maybe that will lessen the load in the future. Go get ’em girl!!

  4. Oh my!!!!…. How do you do it as a single mom. I WOULD NOT be able to stand up to the pressure.

    You know that you can call us anytime and between Randy, me, Madi and Zachary we could help you out with children or food or whatever when you need it. We WANT to help so we need to know when you need something. We would LOVE to do it for you and don’t NOT ask because you feel like you’re putting us out.

    LOVE you and I’m very PROUD of you. Let me know what I can do to help you get to your goals!!!!!

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