Sunday, July 3

Grades are all posted in the GradeBook. Take a look and let me know if you have questions. I won’t send them to the Registrar until Tuesday afternoon, so you have time.

Monday, June 27

It’s the last week!

Due today: Unit 3 projects AND Artist’s Statements in the Google Drive.

…and that means we’re on to the Final Portfolio. There’s a new intro/lecture video on the Units –> Final Portfolio page along with the assignment. Let me know if you have questions.

Office hours this week: Tuesday 1-2, Wednesday 5-6 or by appointment if you can’t do either one of those.

AND… if you’d like, I’m inviting you to leave a parting message for each other, for me, for future students, for your pets, on this Padlet. It’s just something for fun to end the term.

Friday, June 24

I hope everybody is working on their Projects! The ones that are on the Padlet sound terrific. If anyone needs help, let me know. Remember that it’s due end of day on Monday! If you have trouble getting it into the Google Drive, let me know and we’ll figure it out.

I also wanted to remind you about The Artist’s Statement. It, along with the Padlet post and the Perusall annotations about multimodal composing, is the Participation grade for this unit. Here are the specifics of how to do it:

Artist’s Statement

Composers of all sorts often write an Artist’s Statement for their audience that explains their inspirations, intentions, and choices in their creative and critical processes. It helps the reader understand the process that led to the final product by providing insight into what the author set out to do, how they did it, and what they might do to further improve the piece.

As part of Unit 3, you will write a one-page, single-spaced Artist’s Statement that reflects on your finished Unit 3 Project.

A successful Artist’s Statement should:

  1. Discuss your specific rhetorical situation and related choices:
    • your purpose: why you composed the work on that specific topic, in that specific way.
    • your audience: what you understood about your ‘readers’ and how this affected the compositional choices you made.
  2. Explain your choice of genre and how you worked with its conventions. For example, maybe you created a photo essay. An accompanying statement, in which you explain why you found the photo essay to be the best way to communicate your ideas about gun control (for example), would go a long way toward helping your viewers get the most out of your work.
  3. Reflect on your composition, discussing successes and limitations. Use this as an opportunity to look back on your project and evaluate the extent of your achievement as well as note what you would have done differently or better.

NOTE: This should be a fluid, cohesive document that reflects on and justifies the rhetorical choices in your Unit 3 project. Do not merely answer each question in list form. (You’ll upload it into the Unit 3 – Artist’s Statement folder in the Google Drive.)

Tuesday, June 21

A message for almost everybody about the Feature Articles:

Thursday, June 16

I see articles trickling in… although I haven’t had a chance to look yet. So if you’re pressed for time and need until tomorrow (Friday) morning, that’s fine with me. I’ll make the cut-off time be noon tomorrow.

Those of you who are finished have a head start on Unit 3!

The video lecture is up on the Unit 3 page (as well as in the Video Lecture folder in the Library area of Perusall). Unit 3 is usually a lot of fun for people, and if you have a bright idea that I haven’t mentioned, text/email me and we’ll see if it’s do-able!

Office Hours next Tuesday 1-2 and Wednesday 5-6 on Zoom.

Zoom Meeting link:

Monday, June 13

No new video today. There will be on Thursday because we’ll be starting Unit 3 then.

Remember: your two short annotations are due in the Google Drive today. Don’t forget about the Perusall assignment to analyze one of the articles to see its structure.

And your rough draft of the Feature is due this Thursday, June 16 end of day.

I’m working on the Unit 1 Portraits, and they’re generally really good! The grade will be in the Grade Book (check the sidebar on the right to find it), but my notes/feedback are on the draft itself. And… I changed the pdfs to Google Docs so I could leave comments more easily — I flagged those in the Drive so you’ll know where the copy with my notes is.

I have office hours tomorrow (Tuesday) at 1, and again on Wednesday at 5. Of course, you can always text me on Slack and ask for help! Here’s the Zoom information again.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 613 262 6816
Passcode: 128316

Thursday, June 9

Here’s a video about this and that — annotations, topics and narrowing them down, and using Canva. As always, text me if you have questions. And I know I say to put the Pitches as an OpenLab post, but if it’s easier to add it to your sub-folder in the Google Drive, that’s fine, too (in the Drive folder labelled “Unit 2 – Feature Article,” create a new sub-folder with your name on it. You’ll be putting your annotations and drafts in it, too) .

Monday, June 6

Image by zzzvector from Pixabay 

A few things:

The grades for the Introductory Unit are up in the GradeBook (which you’ll find if you scroll down the right side of this site).

The rough drafts of the Portrait are due in the Google Drive by EOD today. Just click on the Google Drive link on the menu, then the Portrait of a Word folder. Then upload yours or copy/paste into a new Google Doc (whatever works).

Remember: you’ll be doing a final draft for the Final Portfolio so you have plenty of chance to revise based on mine and your classmates’ comments.

I’m not requiring Peer Comments but I strongly encourage them!!! So if you’ve noticed on the Padlet that somebody had an interesting Discourse Community, or it’s very close to yours, please comment either in the margins using the Comment feature or at the very end.

The videos to introduce Unit 2 are also up under the Units tab on the menu (and in the Video Lectures folder in the Library on Perusall). This is kind of a complicated unit to explain, so I expect you’ll have questions. Slack/text away!

Friday, June 3

Yes, time is ticking! It’s so easy to kind of blow off assignments since there’s no class meeting. But that just means you have to really keep up with the schedule. Whew!

By Monday, you need to have a “shitty first draft” up in the Google Drive of your Unit 1 Portrait. I’m keeping a close eye on Slack over the weekend, so if you need help, let me know.

I also have to say, the things people are doing (OpenLab posts, Perusall comments, the Padlets) are just wonderful, and I’m really enjoying looking at them. If you get a chance, comment on other people’s posts or comments — there are a couple of interesting conversations happening on Perusall about critical race theory and superstitions…

Again, text me if you have questions or concerns!

June 1

Happy summer!

You probably already saw, but I put the course schedule as its own tab on the main menu. Summers go so quickly, and frankly I was lost this morning, so I thought I’d put it right up front. Hope it helps!

Perusall annotations are going great! One thing you can do (and it counts as your comment and not just as a reply) is to tag onto a comment that’s already there. The discourse community article by Dan Melzer already has lots of good comments, and I flagged a couple to refer to earlier comments, so add yours to things that are already highlighted — everyone has some great stories and insights to share, so… share! (For example, latrines. Just saying… go find it.)

This is starting off to be a great class with really interesting people. Check out the Introduction posts and Padlet if you don’t believe me :-).

A bit of warning: the assignments come up quickly in this first unit and although they aren’t difficult, they do take some time. So as at least one of your classmates has noted, making a schedule and really paying attention to it are the keys.

That said… new folks — quick! You’ve got stuff to catch up on!!!

Of course, if you’re having trouble or want to ask something, send me a text on Slack or email me.

Updates 5/29 and…

The video lectures (parts 1 and 2) are now live on the Units –> Unit 1 – Portrait of a Word page.

If you haven’t joined Slack or done the Units –> Introductory Unit work yet, that deadline is Wednesday, June 1.

Update on 5/30: AND I’ve put the full course schedule under the Course Info tab on the main menu. It will likely change a bit as we get to the individual units, but probably not much. The best, most accurate schedule is in each Unit description.

Another update on 5/30: I forgot to mention that on Perusall, just above the Conversations window, you’ll find a menu item that says “Comments” or something like that. If you use the drop-down menu, it will let you see all comments, or only unread ones, or only ones where you’re mentioned… and you can toggle back and forth. Handy little feature.

Let’s get started! Below you’ll find a bunch of stuff, including what to do for the first day (mostly the things I talked about in the email I sent). Quick side comment: If you’re not on Slack yet, do join asap. It’s the easiest and quickest way to get hold of me, and it will help when we get to Unit 3! Here’s the invitation link again:

CHECK THIS PAGE DAILY! I’ll be posting information, comments, and the video lectures (I’ll also post those videos in the individual Units just for the heck of it).

FOR NOW: Watch the video below where I’ll talk about everything, join Slack if you haven’t already, do the two Introductory assignments by June 1 if you can, and then go to the top menu and go to Units–>Introductory Unit to play with the tools and get to know each other.

Glad you’re here!

Walk through the site and course

Tech how-to’s

Using the tools

Link to The OpenLab for Students help page:

How to create a post on OpenLab

Here is a link to the Class Resources page where you can find video tutorials for creating a post in OpenLab, for joining and using Perusall (the code is BLAIN-3VV3F), and for using Slack (here’s the invitation again).

FYI, I’m going to be putting all the lecture videos on Perusall so that you can ask questions right as I make my attempt to explain something. To find them, go to Library on Perusall, then click on the plus sign next to folder labeled Lectures and select the lecture you’re looking for. As you’re watching, click on the “Leave Comment” button on the top right of the screen to ask me questions, answer each other’s questions if you can, join everybody else’s complaining…. I’ll respond to things quickly. I do get notifications, but you can also alert me on Slack that you’ve left a question.

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