Friday, November 4 - Sunday, November 6

HAPPY WEEKEND! You have reached the end of Week 11! The Week 11 Read and Respond assignment (blog commenting) is available now, and the remaining Week 11 assignments are due on Friday or on Saturday or Sunday - please make sure you get started on those assignments soon. Also, Friday morning, until noon, is the grace period if you forgot to do any of the assignments that were due on Thursday.

Week 11 Responding: Check your groups. The groups for Blog Responding are basically the same as last week, but there have been some small adjustments, based on some more folks having finished up with the classes. So, before you do the blog responding assignment, double-check on your group to make sure you are responding to the right folks.

Storybook Stack. I'm still working my way through the stack of Storybook assignments that people have turned in this week. If you want to check to make sure your assignment is in the stack, you can see the contents of the stack here. Everyone who turned in a Week 10 assignment on time should have gotten that back from me - if you turned in a late Week 10 assignment, or if you turned in some other Storybook assignment by Friday at 8AM, I will do my best to get comments back to you by the end of the day Friday.

Finishing the class early. (repeat announcement) Some more people have finished up the class early: congratulations! When you finish up with the class I record a "FINAL GRADE" in the D2L Gradebook so you can be sure you are done. So, just let me know when you have completed the number of points you need: 410 for an A, 360 for a B, 320 for a C. It's entirely up to you what grade you want to finish with in the class. There is no need to apologize for stopping out with a grade of B or C (many people are taking this class just for Gen. Ed. credit, and I know it is often not a top priority). Whatever grade you decide to stop with is fine with me. The whole idea behind this points grading system is to let you know exactly where you stand and to allow you to choose to be finished with the class when you have the points you need.

Mix and match points. (repeat announcement) Now that there are less than five weeks of the semester left (rest of Week 11, plus Weeks 12-13-14-15), you might want to plan to do some "mix and match" in terms of just which assignments you want to complete this semester to get the points you need for the grade you want to get. So, based on the assignments you enjoy most/least in the class, you can certainly skip some assignments, provided that you end up with the points you need at the end. My only recommendation is that you do this cautiously. You don't want to skip so many assignments that you end up not getting the points you need for your desired grade.

Friday Events on Campus. There are events for Dad's Day this Friday and throughout the weekend - with free admission to campus museums, special presentations and more; you can download the full Dad's Day Schedule of Events here (PDF). Find out more about this event and other events at the Campus Calendar online.

Sea of Galilee Dig. OU has just received approval to participate in a an archaeological dig near the Sea of Galilee, excavating an ancient Jewish synagogue. The dig is led by Dr. Jodi Magness, a world-famous archaeologist, and Dr. Nina Livesey of the Religious Studies program will be the OU faculty leader (Nina is one of my favorite people at OU; she is doing fascinating work in the history of Christianity and Judaism). The dig will take place from June 1-30 as a 6-credit course in Religious Studies, RELS 4640. The image below shows Dr. Magness standing on the remains of the eastern wall of a Roman-Byzantine era synagogue that was unexpectedly discovered during the 2011 dig season; the 2012 dig will uncover the rest of the synagogue. You can read more about the excavation at Jodi Magness's website; for information about OU's participation in the dig, see this webpage about the OU Study Abroad Program: Huqoq Excavation, which also has information about financial aid and scholarships for study abroad.