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Author Topic: "favorite" student e-mails  (Read 4236768 times)
octoprof
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« Reply #19020 on: March 09, 2012, 10:58:04 AM »

<snip>

People seem to be convinced that mathematics (and algebra, in particular) isn't good for anything in real life. Thus, they convince themselves that it's confusing because it doesn't relate to real life.

My students (generally sophomores and higher) always seem surprised when I show them y = mx + b and remind them what they learned so long ago, and then show the how it relates to managerial accounting (and costing of loads of things, say their mobile phone bill). You can see the thought bubbles above their heads: "But I was so sure I'd never really use that math crap they forced me to  learn way back when..."

Math is life.  Unless, of course, you never have to pay for anything.
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nocurving
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« Reply #19021 on: March 09, 2012, 12:02:02 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

This is the second time this student (and he's not a kid) mentioned reviews.  On the first exam, he said he thought I'd give the formulas/equations.  I reminded him I had told the class multiple times that they have to know formulas/equations.  Then after the exam, he said I should post the formulas they have to memorize.  I told doing the summary and figuring that out is part of their learning process.  His comeback?  "That's why you have low reviews".  I suppose he's referring to RMP.
 
Then, on this email, he wanted an extension on a quiz. His excuse was his roommate did something stupid and so they had no internet for few days so he's missed 2 quizzes.  (Note that those quizzes were spaced almost 10 days apart).  I told him that there are computers on campus he can use and that the schedule is posted in the syllabus and he should print it out so that he doesn't miss another one.  No mention of the snow storm (which was a dud, snow was gone later that day), plus they had 2 days to do the quiz online.

I'm trying to control myself not to answer in a similar rude manner.  Either way, this is one student who was obviously spoon-fed  and had gotten his way with other prof and I'd like suggestions on how to answer without outright being rude.
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dr_alcott
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« Reply #19022 on: March 09, 2012, 12:19:02 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

This is the second time this student (and he's not a kid) mentioned reviews.  On the first exam, he said he thought I'd give the formulas/equations.  I reminded him I had told the class multiple times that they have to know formulas/equations.  Then after the exam, he said I should post the formulas they have to memorize.  I told doing the summary and figuring that out is part of their learning process.  His comeback?  "That's why you have low reviews".  I suppose he's referring to RMP.
 
Then, on this email, he wanted an extension on a quiz. His excuse was his roommate did something stupid and so they had no internet for few days so he's missed 2 quizzes.  (Note that those quizzes were spaced almost 10 days apart).  I told him that there are computers on campus he can use and that the schedule is posted in the syllabus and he should print it out so that he doesn't miss another one.  No mention of the snow storm (which was a dud, snow was gone later that day), plus they had 2 days to do the quiz online.

I'm trying to control myself not to answer in a similar rude manner.  Either way, this is one student who was obviously spoon-fed  and had gotten his way with other prof and I'd like suggestions on how to answer without outright being rude.


What a jerk. I would call him on his unprofessionalism. Calling you a bad teacher is way out of line.
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #19023 on: March 09, 2012, 12:27:26 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

This is the second time this student (and he's not a kid) mentioned reviews.  On the first exam, he said he thought I'd give the formulas/equations.  I reminded him I had told the class multiple times that they have to know formulas/equations.  Then after the exam, he said I should post the formulas they have to memorize.  I told doing the summary and figuring that out is part of their learning process.  His comeback?  "That's why you have low reviews".  I suppose he's referring to RMP.
 
Then, on this email, he wanted an extension on a quiz. His excuse was his roommate did something stupid and so they had no internet for few days so he's missed 2 quizzes.  (Note that those quizzes were spaced almost 10 days apart).  I told him that there are computers on campus he can use and that the schedule is posted in the syllabus and he should print it out so that he doesn't miss another one.  No mention of the snow storm (which was a dud, snow was gone later that day), plus they had 2 days to do the quiz online.

I'm trying to control myself not to answer in a similar rude manner.  Either way, this is one student who was obviously spoon-fed  and had gotten his way with other prof and I'd like suggestions on how to answer without outright being rude.


What a jerk. I would call him on his unprofessionalism. Calling you a bad teacher is way out of line.

+1

Dillweed.
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mathspice
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« Reply #19024 on: March 09, 2012, 12:55:02 PM »

From an online student who isn't passing the course:

Prof. Mathspice,
I was wondering if the 2 days/week minimum was really a requirement.  It is really difficult for me to find one day to do the work much less.



Don't they realize that this may be exact reason why they are failing?? Oy.
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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #19025 on: March 09, 2012, 1:11:40 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

Dear Super Rude Student,

Thank you for the information and I look forward to sharing with the dean how my excellent performance in upholding standards has been noted by a number of students.  Remember, the next quiz is due <date>.  If you take it now, then it'll be done if some other random life event intervenes at the last minute. 

Sincerely,

Dr. Nocurving
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marigolds
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« Reply #19026 on: March 09, 2012, 1:53:05 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

Dear Super Rude Student,

Thank you for the information and I look forward to sharing with the dean how my excellent performance in upholding standards has been noted by a number of students.  Remember, the next quiz is due <date>.  If you take it now, then it'll be done if some other random life event intervenes at the last minute. 

Sincerely,

Dr. Nocurving

No coaching on professionalism in email? No reminder that honey catches more flies than vinegar? Would you save those for an in-person talk so that there's no paper trail of scolding of a clearly angry student?

Since I teach writing, I always feel that it's my responsibility to talk to them about the rhetorical choices in their emails, which are persuasive documents just as papers are.
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They are our servants.  They are like dogs.  Sometimes, they think they remember being wolves, but they are only dreaming.
polly_mer
practice makes perfect
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #19027 on: March 09, 2012, 2:18:04 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

Dear Super Rude Student,

Thank you for the information and I look forward to sharing with the dean how my excellent performance in upholding standards has been noted by a number of students.  Remember, the next quiz is due <date>.  If you take it now, then it'll be done if some other random life event intervenes at the last minute. 

Sincerely,

Dr. Nocurving

No coaching on professionalism in email? No reminder that honey catches more flies than vinegar? Would you save those for an in-person talk so that there's no paper trail of scolding of a clearly angry student?

Since I teach writing, I always feel that it's my responsibility to talk to them about the rhetorical choices in their emails, which are persuasive documents just as papers are.

I would save those things for an in-person talk because (a) the student isn't going to learn from that response based on previous information and (b) when the student forwards the response to the dean, then I don't want to have that talk again.

In my experience, using that kind of email as a teaching moment just causes more headache for me, although I do make students do rewrites for other things where no ego is at stake.  However, a quiet word before or after the next class tends to greatly reduce the number of those emails I receive because the give-and-take of "what is a good teacher?" can be a great teaching moment that doesn't leave a paper trail.  I often remind students about the papertrail and see the aha moment when they realize that the dean isn't going to appreciate that petulant email and won't take the student seriously if a complaint goes up the line.

I'm teaching about honey, vinegar, and professionalism by example and it seems to work better for me than an exposition.
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I've joined a bizarre cult called JordanCanonicalForm's Witnesses.  I have to go from door to door asking people things like, "Good evening, sir!  Do you have a moment to chat about Linear Transformations?"
mathspice
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« Reply #19028 on: March 09, 2012, 2:26:35 PM »

I'm teaching about honey, vinegar, and professionalism by example and it seems to work better for me than an exposition.

LOVE this. You go, Polly mer!
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I'm teaching about honey, vinegar, and professionalism by example and it seems to work better for me than an exposition.
geonerd
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Do not take the bait.


« Reply #19029 on: March 09, 2012, 2:39:38 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing. I will be joining the 10 or so other people I know of that will not be giving you good reviews. Smart lady, bad teacher... not unusual

This is the second time this student (and he's not a kid) mentioned reviews.  On the first exam, he said he thought I'd give the formulas/equations.  I reminded him I had told the class multiple times that they have to know formulas/equations.  Then after the exam, he said I should post the formulas they have to memorize.  I told doing the summary and figuring that out is part of their learning process.  His comeback?  "That's why you have low reviews".  I suppose he's referring to RMP.
 
Then, on this email, he wanted an extension on a quiz. His excuse was his roommate did something stupid and so they had no internet for few days so he's missed 2 quizzes.  (Note that those quizzes were spaced almost 10 days apart).  I told him that there are computers on campus he can use and that the schedule is posted in the syllabus and he should print it out so that he doesn't miss another one.  No mention of the snow storm (which was a dud, snow was gone later that day), plus they had 2 days to do the quiz online.

I'm trying to control myself not to answer in a similar rude manner.  Either way, this is one student who was obviously spoon-fed  and had gotten his way with other prof and I'd like suggestions on how to answer without outright being rude.


Dear Dillweed,
Several student computer labs are housed in <building names> and exist to help students who do not have regular access to a personal computer. Before our next class meeting please visit the computer lab in Building X, which is nearest our classroom, and print out the syllabus. The syllabus contains the quiz schedule and the course policy on missed work. The next quiz is on <date>, and you should begin preparing for it now. If you are still without internet access at home then plan to be on campus before <date> to complete the quiz in one of the campus computer labs.

Dr. NC


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anon99
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« Reply #19030 on: March 09, 2012, 10:22:18 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing.

Dear Dillweed,
Several student computer labs are housed in <building names> and exist to help students who do not have regular access to a personal computer. Before our next class meeting please visit the computer lab in Building X, which is nearest our classroom, and print out the syllabus. The syllabus contains the quiz schedule and the course policy on missed work. The next quiz is on <date>, and you should begin preparing for it now. If you are still without internet access at home then plan to be on campus before <date> to complete the quiz in one of the campus computer labs.

Not to mention, he could go to a public library and use the computers there!!
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llanfair
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Whither Canada?


« Reply #19031 on: March 09, 2012, 10:30:51 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing.

Dear Dillweed,
Several student computer labs are housed in <building names> and exist to help students who do not have regular access to a personal computer. Before our next class meeting please visit the computer lab in Building X, which is nearest our classroom, and print out the syllabus. The syllabus contains the quiz schedule and the course policy on missed work. The next quiz is on <date>, and you should begin preparing for it now. If you are still without internet access at home then plan to be on campus before <date> to complete the quiz in one of the campus computer labs.

Not to mention, he could go to a public library and use the computers there!!

Exactly.  That dog won't hunt.
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tee_bee
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« Reply #19032 on: March 09, 2012, 10:32:36 PM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing.

Dear Dillweed,
Several student computer labs are housed in <building names> and exist to help students who do not have regular access to a personal computer. Before our next class meeting please visit the computer lab in Building X, which is nearest our classroom, and print out the syllabus. The syllabus contains the quiz schedule and the course policy on missed work. The next quiz is on <date>, and you should begin preparing for it now. If you are still without internet access at home then plan to be on campus before <date> to complete the quiz in one of the campus computer labs.

Not to mention, he could go to a public library and use the computers there!!

Oh, sure, but none of his friends/frat brothers/similarly situated dipsticks are there. Plus, there's all those icky people. His parents paid a lot for his tuition, and want a computer lab moved next door to his 1200 sq foot apartment/raging nonstop kegger. Twit.
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virgo_imperfecta
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« Reply #19033 on: March 10, 2012, 12:41:00 AM »

Hi Professor,
 
I just completed and submitted exam 1 in Moodles. However, while completing the exam moodles timed out while I was completing my short anwer responses in word.  I had completed the mulitiple choices already but when it timed out I then had to submit the multiple choices again and I inadvertently got some the questions and answers mixed up when resubmitting but moodles would not allow me to correct them. The ones I am referring to are gender reform, male privilege, patriarchy and matrix of domination. When getting the grade back I see those were marked wrong and I had the correct answer in my original submission.


Does anyone get the answers wrong on purpose? This e-mail especially confuses me because it's missing the usual demand I let the student go back in to the quiz and change their answers...you know, now that they've seen the correct ones. Nefarious Moodle(s), changing their answers like that.
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anakin
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Goes to 11


« Reply #19034 on: March 10, 2012, 1:22:43 AM »

From super rude snowflake:

We don't all have access to the computers when we live an hour away and there is a snowstorm. Thx for nothing.

Dear Dillweed,
Several student computer labs are housed in <building names> and exist to help students who do not have regular access to a personal computer. Before our next class meeting please visit the computer lab in Building X, which is nearest our classroom, and print out the syllabus. The syllabus contains the quiz schedule and the course policy on missed work. The next quiz is on <date>, and you should begin preparing for it now. If you are still without internet access at home then plan to be on campus before <date> to complete the quiz in one of the campus computer labs.

Not to mention, he could go to a public library and use the computers there!!

Exactly.  That dog won't hunt.

That would make this student is the Chinese Crested of the Student World.
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