My number 2 is about a down side of my work. Maybe I should have stuck with my 'I never want to be a teacher' idea? ;-)
1. Marking papers takes up lots of time, especially time that was supposed to be free time, as in 'weekends' and 'evenings'.
2. I actually don't like it to award Fails.
3. Unfortunately I have to, too often.
4. Which makes you wonder: why not just give everybody a Pass? Or higher? Well, if that was possible, there wouldn't be much point in marking the papers in the first place. Which would be fine with me: let's change the rules.
5. This would not go well within our society though, which is very much focused on performance and proving to be the best, be it in school, sports, art, dance (tap dance competitions?????) or at bullying other countries about their idiosyncracies.
6. Hey, we have spelling contests for primary school children, for goodness sake! And aren't there the diploma's in kindergarten for being able to tie your shoelaces?
7. See, that's where it all starts, the obsession with grades and marks. Maybe even sooner, when parents are bragging about their children who 'already' can roll over, crawl or smile. (Meaning: my kid is better than yours, that still cannot perform these things.)
8. I think it is silly my uni only gives out grades, not marks, because students tend to give you a whole lot of hassle over 0.1 more if you do give them the marks. But we give them the marks anyway, we just don't tell them which ones. (I must admit this does save time arguing about them, but still.)
9. Students only complain about unfairness if they find your judgement to severe. If you give them a good grade for slack work, nobody complains (like: this is not fair to my classmates, please mark me down).
10. Marking is not too bad if students would write interesting papers, but those are a minority. Lots of people study efficiently, another Western based value: get the best result with the least effort.
11. You maybe wonder by now why I want to be a teacher? Well, I like the students and I like to work with them. Do it over being stuck in an office for 8.5 hours a day anytime. I just don't like marking papers. Or reports for that matter.
12. The reason I'm procrastinating here, from marking papers that is, is that is seems to be a real Sisyphus job (the ancient king who had to roll a big rock up a hill, only to have it roll down the other end, after which he had to start over): as soon as the pile is gone, there is a new pile turning up.
13. So I guess I have to put up with this part of the job. But only while protesting!
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