Friday, November 13 - Sunday, November 15

HAPPY WEEKEND! You have reached the end of Week 12! The Week 12 Read and Respond assignment (blog commenting) is available now, and the remaining Week 12 assignments are due on Friday or on Saturday or Sunday - please make sure you get started on those assignments soon. Friday morning, until noon, is the grace period if you forgot to do any of the assignments that were due on Thursday.

Blog Responding. You will find more and more people without the current week's posts in their blogs as they decide to mix-and-match assignments in order to finish up the class. So, please check to see if there are blog posts for the current week you can respond to but, if not, just follow the instructions in the assignment: you can respond to other blog posts in that person's blog if they do not have blog posts for the current week. If you are looking for other blog posts to respond to, try to find posts which do not already have comments (you can see the number of comments for each post displayed in blue writing to the right of the date and time stamp).

Choosing your grade. One of the reasons I designed the class grading system based on points is so that you can choose to stop exactly when you have the points you need - and that includes the option to stop when you have the points you need for a grade of B or C in the class. Most of you are taking this as a General Education requirement, so the crucial thing is that you pass the class, and whether you get an A or a B or a C is not really that important. For those of you who have jobs, who have families, etc., you have some things going on in your life far more important than this class. So please do not be embarrassed or feel like you need to apologize if you decide to take a grade of B or C in this class. The grading system is designed precisely so that option is available to you, no questions asked. When you get the number of points you need (410 for an A, 360 for a B, 320 for a C), you are done! My only request is that you please let me know when you are done so I can adjust the comment assignments accordingly.

IMPORTANT NOTE: IT Maintenance. On the third Sunday of every month, IT does maintenance on its servers. There will be a maintenance window this Sunday, November 15. This often causes service outages, which may affect you if you are trying to publish webpages at that time. The maintenance window is in the morning, and the maintenance should be completed before noon on Sunday. For specific information and updates, see the IT Alerts page at (this is also a good page to check if you are experiencing problems with Desire2Learn, email, or other IT services).

Storybook Stack. There are still some Storybook assignments in the stack and I am making my way through them in the order that they were turned in. If you want to check and make sure your assignment is in the stack, you can see the contents of the stack here. As always on Friday, I will do my best to get comments back before the weekend to any assignment turned in before noon on Friday. Anything that is turned in after noon on Friday will be added to the stack first thing on Monday morning.

Thanksgiving. (repeat announcement) You will get a full week off for Thanksgiving break in this class. So, Week 13 will start on Tuesday of next week, November 17, with the usual Tuesday-Thursday assignments due that week. Then, you have a whole week off between Friday November 20 until Friday November 27 (Thanksgiving Day is November 26). You will have the usual Week 13 weekend assignments due November 28-29, with the usual grace period until noon on Monday, November 30. Then Week 14 will start up on Tuesday, December 1. I am guessing that many of you will probably already be done with the class by the time Thanksgiving break arrives!

November 13: Vine Deloria. Today, November 13, marks the death just three years ago, in 2005, of the Sioux Indian author and political activist Vine Deloria, Jr. You can read more about Vine Deloria's life and career in this Wikipedia article. Deloria is most famous for his 1969 book Custer Died for Your Sins: An Indian Manifesto, and also for his various works in religion and theology, such as God Is Red: A Native View of Religion and Red Earth, White Lies: Native Americans and the Myth of Scientific Fact. Deloria's writings are thoughtful and thought-provoking, and very witty, too, as you can see in one of Deloria's most often cited quotations: When asked by an anthropologist what the Indians called America before the white man came, an Indian said simply, ‘Ours.’ If you are curious to hear Vine Deloria, you can check out this webcast from the Library of Congress from 2002, as part of the National Book Festival.