Thursday, July 20, 2006

Doing the undergraduate research thing

Today, I had my second meeting with my undergraduate researcher, a theater and English student who's working on teaching Shakespeare through performance issues.

Starting Monday, I'll be working an hour and a half a day for a week with a group of high school students who're working together to put on The Tempest in a program run by our local theater group, and directed by one of my colleagues at NWU.

The mesh for my student is very promising, and she's got lots of potential. But I'm a bit worried that I haven't pushed her hard enough on the library thing to this point, so she hasn't really been reading theoretical stuff about teaching through performance. She's done a much better job preparing to work with the students on the play specifically.

On Tuesday, we spent an hour and a half basically going through each Act and figuring out broadly what we'd do each day, and what additional stuff we'd introduce. My thinking is that over the course of an hour and a half, we need to do two or three activities, and get different people up and moving around. I asked her to think about and prepare what acting stuff she wanted to do with them for Act 2, and she had four ideas, of which we'll probably be able to run with two, and that's VERY good!

Tomorrow, I'm heading to a small conference thing on undergraduate and faculty collaborative research, so I'm hoping to learn lots.

Meanwhile, today I actually went with a friend to rent kayaks. We carried the kayaks (which felt heavier than the reported 54 pounds, but then, I'm a total whuss) down the famous campus hill to the river to put in, kayaked for an hour and a half, and then had the good sense to put the kayaks in the back of my wagon to take them up the hill (one at a time).

The kayak rental guy said that the only time he'd ever tipped the kayak was when he'd tried on purpose. And as my friend and I were talking about that and getting ready to get in and going, I naturally proved my personal tipping talent, and tipped it getting in. So now I have a boo boo on my elbow. And boy, did the water feel GREAT! It was worth the boo boo.

After an hour and a half of kayaking, and carrying the kayaks around, my shoulders are so tired tonight that I don't want to much move my arms.

What could be better?

See you in a few days!

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