Sunday, September 6 + Monday - Labor Day

Today is Sunday of Week 2. Make sure you finish the end-of-week assignments today, Sunday, and you might want to do some extra credit assignments also. Week 3 will start on Tuesday, and for more information about the Labor Day holiday, see the items below.

Class Procedures and Reminders

Labor Day. Monday is a holiday, so I've reorganized the reading for Week 3. Normally, you would have reading diary posts deadlines on Monday and Tuesday, but I've changed that to Tuesday and Wednesday for Week 3, although the Storytelling post is also due on Wednesday, which means you'll need to plan your schedule accordingly. Hopefully, you will have used this weekend to set up your own class schedule so that you'll be doing the assignments based on a schedule that is really convenient for you. More about that: Designing Your Own Class Schedule. If you are doing school work on Labor Day, that would be another chance to work ahead and finish up all of Week 3 so that you won't have any deadlines to think about for the rest of the week.

Grace Period. Because Monday is a holiday, I won't be sending out the usual email about the grace period reminder on Monday morning, although I'll try to remember to send something out on Sunday night when I shut down my computer. There is a grace period on Monday morning as usual for the final Week 2 assignments. Just to be clear, though: the grace periods are for unexpected emergencies, such as a computer failure, a power outage, being kidnapped by space aliens, etc. So, you need to plan on getting the work done by the due date, not during the grace period. The grace period is for when your work is late because of some unexpected emergency. If you turn something in during the grace period, you are turning it in late, and the grace period is your no-questions-asked extension. Use it wisely.

Project Stack. Many of you are turning in your first Project assignment this weekend by email. You can check the stack to make sure I received your assignment; I'll update that periodically over the weekend, and on Tuesday I'll start replying to the assignments in the order received. To get comments back sooner, turn in your assignment on Sunday afternoon rather than waiting until Sunday night. It usually takes me all week to get through the stack (especially during a four-day week like next week), so the sooner you turn in the assignment, the sooner you will get comments back.

The following items are for fun and exploration:

Tiny Hamster is a Giant Monster. I am a big fan of stories that are told through images, and this little video is a great example of that... and it's completely hilarious IMO.

Words to Watch: Today's words to watch out for are THRONE and THROWN. For details, see this blog post.

Featured Storybook: Three Goddesses and Their Birds. At this slumber party, the stories are not about princesses from fairy tales but about the goddesses of ancient Greece and their distinctive bird companions.

Free Book Online: Vergil's Aeneid translated into verse by John Dryden. This blog post provides additional information about the book, which is one of the most famous English verse translations of Vergil's epic poem about the founding of Rome by the Trojan hero Aeneas.

India Comic Book: Ravana Humbled: An Arrogant King Finds New Friends. This blog post provides a detailed reading guide for this comic book on Reserve in Bizzell Library. If you are interested in some backstory about Ravana, this one is a great choice!

Words of Wisdom: Today's proverb poster is A barley corn is better than a diamond to a cock (an English proverb). Details at the Proverb Lab. The proverb provides a specific interpretation of the famous Aesop's fable of the rooster who is frustrated when he finds a diamond in his manure heap, rather than a barleycorn. Is the rooster just being practical (he can eat a barleycorn, not a diamond), or is he a fool who doesn't recognize a good thing when he sees it? You can find the fable interpreted both ways, and this proverb offers the very practical interpretation, recognizing the rooster as wise.

Today's Video: Fictional Worlds. Here's a TED-Ed video from Kate Messner: How to build a fictional world.

Growth Mindset: Today's growth mindset cat is ready for new challenges — Take risks: go out on a limb! Details at the blog.


Event on Campus: Bizzell Library has a special schedule for the Labor Day holiday — it is closed on Sunday, but it is open on Monday, Labor Day, from noon until 2AM... which seems kind of odd, but that's the schedule I found at the Library website — Bizzell Hours Fall 2015 — so if you are on campus on Monday, check out the great new Collaborative Learning Center there in Bizzell and see if it is a study space that would suit you.

September 6: Robert Pirsig. September 6, marks the birthday of Robert Pirsig, who was born in 1928 and who is still with us today: Happy birthday, Robert Pirsig! Pirsig is the author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I first read this book when I was 16 years old and I've read it again pretty much every year or every other year since then — so, yep, that's about thirty times by now. This is the only book I don't think I will ever catch up with: every time I come back to it, it seems a little more far out, in the best sense of that phrase, and I keep running right on after it, learning new things every time. The novel itself is about a motorcycle journey that Pirsig took across the country in 1968 together with his young son, Chris. Below is a picture from the trip showing the two of them on the bike; you can learn more about Pirsig in this Wikipedia article.

Note: You can page back through the older blog posts to see any announcements you might have missed, and you can check out the Twitter stream for information and fun stuff during the day.