I've been getting a LOT of emails from my first year students, more than I remember from any class in the past, asking pretty basic questions; yes, some of the questions have already been answered in class, but most of them haven't. I forgot to tell my students to double space their typed work, for example, and have been asked about that more than a few times. I've been asked about formatting.
I'm taking the questions as a good sign. Or I'm hoping they're a good sign, anyway. I'm hoping they mean that I actually did communicate to these people that asking questions when you don't know something is actually a great thing, and not something to avoid. (Though, yes, I hate to ask questions sometimes, too, especially if I think people will think I'm stupid. I'd be my own worst student, I fear.)
The upshot, though, is that I need to keep that in mind when I answer the questions, every time. EVERY time.
I'm not the most patient person in the world, and I have a tendency to respond impatiently at times. Sometimes my response isn't so much impatience as coastal attitude. Coastal attitude doesn't fly well here in the midwest, though, especially with students who are understandably on edge in their first semester of college.
My second resolution is to grade more quickly and efficiently. Oh, that should be easy. NOT! But I need to do it.
I also need to find a way to fight winter, to get out and get some exercise even on the gray days when the cold bites through layers of long underwear and fleece.
That's all. I need to start reading student papers now. FAST! And then get out and do something!