EDWISE  - EDITOR AND EDUCATION CONSULTANT
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A Year of Living Positively -Day 5

I tend to feel a bit rushed and pressured to get these posts completed every day, but right now I should just relax. I guess I am actually preoccupied about the hectic day I'll have tomorrow, and the logistics of squeezing everything I'll need to do on time.

Tomorrow I must under go the third of a series of dental operations to complete a root canal job. The dentists said they do it in stages so as to let the nerves rest and recover. He's an expert in implants and "geriatric dentistry" with great bedside manner. For instance, he held my hand when one part of the operation got to be more painful than expected one time.

Fortunately, the implants will be installed another day, so I shouldn't be so anxious right now. When I see the dentist tomorrow, however, I'll have to have my eye taped shut and try to explain to the staff what's wrong. I guess I'll have to write down the name of the disorder for them to best get it.

The dental appointment is to follow four hours of classes. I'll be administering two exams, and directing one class. Then I'll have to get an important errand done on campus and meet a supervisor briefly before jumping into a taxi to get to the dentists' on time. With such a hectic schedule, I'm working out the minutia of the logistics so as to accomplish all that needs to be accomplished in a timely fashion. I'm getting it worked out. I guess I should arrive early to take care of some photocopying and collecting materials before the 9:00 a.m. exam. As for the class between the two exams, it's the adult city employees' class, and they'll understand if I leave them with something to do and walk out the class early.

I should just relax for the moment. No exams to give until this evening, so I'm at home. I worked on a two-page translation, then marked a batch of exams. One class performed the same task better than the other. I'm disappointed by the first, but pleased with the performance of the second. The second class has demonstrated higher motivation and engagement in the course work, and understood what was required and worked harder to do a better job. In fact, there are a lot of scores around 90% , though only one at 100% in that second batch.

Sometimes the older students in a second-year class are complacent and not so well motivated, perhaps because they've already achieved high grades in English. Often, they are from more privileged social positions. Still, a bunch like that might not pay close enough attention to instructions and not be willing to put in much effort, which can lead to some more advanced level students getting less than 90% on assignments and tests, which can lead to some of the disappointed students getting alarmed and making complaints. You see, I make it so that the English majors with fewer advantages can still compete with the gifted and more privileged students by measuring task completion as well as performance competency. Sometimes the ones who have to work harder do better at following instructions and correctly completing tasks, whereas the others may be lax. 

After two classes write exams tomorrow, I am handing over one batch (the larger one, of course!) to the staff who agreed to mark some tests for me. It'll be awkward to deliver the stuff to her, though.

I use some free time to enjoy playing computer games. I never thought I'd get enthusiastic about computer games until I discovered the kind of violence-free games in which you can build communities and have multiple avatars interact, such as Farmville, Yoville and Village Life. I abandoned the former two ages ago, but I've been into Village Life for awhile. I broke off the Village Game activity over the summer, but reopened it and spent a little money so as to expand it and add another village. The program has been quirky since. For example, when my young avatars marry, the program has the principle avatar move out to another player's game site time and time again, causing depopulation of my villages. The last of the second village, a riverside fishing village, just died yesterday, leaving that village completely empty. Meanwhile, new Christmastime features have added characters to the first village under a blanket of snow. That village can no longer get protein from the fish harvested by the river village, though I can still harvest fruit and vegetables midwinter! Two newborns are crawling around barefoot in the snow! At least the new adult characters came with better clothing and a warmer house for the season. Anyway, I mostly enjoy such games but they do become additional daily tasks once you get into them because you have to keep it up daily if you want to enjoy them fully. Still, I can go at my own pace. I shouldn't let myself get tired out playing them. 

I also play a variety of scrabble-type word games. Sometimes I pursue them too much and tire out my head over them. I have also taken up a game called "Criminal Case" where mostly you open up a scene and click on the objects named as fast as you can to earn more and more credits. It does involve violence, although the object is the pursuit of criminal justice. Each set of scenes are related to a murder, and there are interview scripts with suspects, and certain objects are clues to be analyzed. You just follow through the process, completing all the tasks for each scene and test and interview to solve the crime and go on to another. I like it, though I wouldn't call myself an "addict", though I sometimes pursue it too intensely.

I think such games are imaginative and worth spending some recreational time when you want to be or must be at home. You can build skills by using them, which is part of the reason why I do them. They are also distracting and entertaining, an alternative to TV or Youtube. I'm thankful to the people who create them, and I know that the industry provides a lot of decent jobs these days. 






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