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The Weekly Blast: September 25, 2009

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK
This week the Resource Center’s own Matt Weingast offers a revision activity for Unit #1 that asks students to think about Sportscenter as a way to dig into those crucial moments in their essays. Check it out at:
http://www.umass.edu/writingprogram/teaching/database/_resourcecontents.html

LESLIE’S TECH TIP
Have you looked at UDrive yet? You can use the UDrive to store files, share files with UMass and non-UMass groups or individuals, and collaborate on projects or coursework. UDrive is an easy-to-use, Web-based file storage and sharing system. Access your files from on and off campus, using any computer with an Internet connection. UMass Amherst faculty, students, and staff have 250 MB of space in their UDrive folders. This is a great way to organize your teaching and schoolwork.

To log in to your UDrive space, go to: http://udrive.oit.umass.edu, and for more information visit http://www.oit.umass.edu/udrive/get_started/about.html

TUESDAY WORKSHOP – SEPTEMBER 29

Our second Tuesday Workshop will be held on September 29, 2009 from 11:15-12:30 in Bartlett 125. Deirdre Vinyard and Leslie Bradshaw will be presenting on Grammar & Style. In preparation of the workshop please read “Grammar, Grammars, and the Teaching of Grammar” by Patrick Hartwell in Teaching Composition. Please also bring your Penguin Handbooks.
Please remember that all Tuesday Workshops are mandatory for new TOs. All others are welcome.

EXPERIMENTAL WRITING WORKSHOP PROPOSALS DUE OCTOBER 2
Proposals for Experimental Writing Workshops are due on October 2. For information about how to submit please see our website at:
http://www.umass.edu/writingprogram/teaching/call%20for%20experimentals.html

LIBRARY TRAINING IN ENGLWRIT 112
All College Writing instructors need to introduce their students to the research resources, both print and electronic, of UMass Libraries. This is a key part of Unit III: Adding to a Conversation. We recommend that you do this around October 28-29. You can reserve a computer lab in Du Bois Library by going to the librarians’ blog for College Writing: http://blogs.umass.edu/ugradlib/college-writing/ and clicking on “Reserving a Library Instruction Classroom.” Do this as soon as possible so you’ll be sure to get a computer lab when you want it.

SPECIAL PROJECT MONEY
Interested in doing a special project for your class? Check out how you can apply for funds at:
http://www.umass.edu/writingprogram/teaching/call%20for%20experimentals.html

DIVERSITY ON TAP!
Thursday, October 1 at 8:30, the Diversity Committee and Friends will meet at
Wiggins Tavern in Northampton.

Join members of the Diversity Committee to discuss issues related to writing and the classroom every Thursday evening! Bring questions, concerns, and classroom situations and enjoy a lively discussion!

DIVERSITY COMMITTEE SEEKS NEW MEMBERS
The Diversity Committee actively seeks new members! Join us to engage in exciting discussions relating to issues of diversity and the composition classroom. We will meet twice per month –day and time to be scheduled. For more information, contact Deirdre Vinyard dvinyard@acad.umass.edu

JOIN THE CURRICULUM COMMITTEE!
The Curriculum Committee oversees the curriculum of our main first-year writing course, College Writing (Englwrit 112) and is a great committee to join if you’re interested in talking more about the pedagogy and design of our syllabus, course calendar, and policies. We will likely meet once a month for the coming year. For more information, contact David Fleming at dfleming@english.umass.edu

JUST ONE MORE SPOT AVAILABLE ON THE STUDENT WRITING ANTHOLOGY COMMITTEE.
We STILL need one more graduate student to serve on this year’s Student Writing Anthology committee. Will that lucky person be you? If you have been thinking it over, now is the time to ask any questions you have and make your final decision!

We have a terrific group of people to work with, and we are all eagerly waiting for you to give us your schedule so we can have our first meeting.

Meetings are generally an hour long. We do not meet unless we have enough essay submissions to read and score, our meetings take your schedule into account, and we have both clerical and copyediting assistance.

Being on the Anthology committee is not only an enjoyable experience but an important and provocative one as well. Members learn many things about assessment and grading, ideas about you might lead students to structure successful units, how other teachers approach the TBA, what kinds of papers reach each unit’s goals most successfully, and many other things that are not the obvious ones you would imagine learning by being a member of this committee. (Although we do learn about all that goes into creating a book as well!)

Please contact me at pez@acad.umass.edu or just stop by my office (305 Bartlett) either to let me know you would like to join or ask me any questions you might have about being a committee member. Thank you. – Pat Zukowski

2009-2010 DISTINGUISED TEACHING AWARDS
Nominations for the 2009-2010 Distinguished Teaching Awards are now being accepted. The Distinguished Teaching Award is the highest recognition of teaching awarded to faculty members and teaching assistants/associates. To nominate your favorite professor or TA, tell us why your nominee should receive a Distinguished Teaching Award. All nominations must include your name, mailing address, and email address. Nomination forms are available online at http://www.umass.edu/provost/award/campus/dta.html.

Only current and former students may nominate faculty members. Teaching
assistants/associates may be nominated by faculty members or current and
former students. Please submit all nominations by Friday, October 23, 2009 to:

Distinguished Teaching Award Committee
Center for Teaching
301 Goodell
(413) 545-1225
(413) 545-3829 (fax)
dta at provost.umass.edu

Check out the DTA monuments in the Campus Center or http://www.umass.edu/provost/award/campus/dta.html to see if your favorite instructor has already won the Distinguished Teaching Award. Faculty members and teaching assistants/associates may only win the award once.

FOOD ROOM!
Will the person that recently made coffee in the food room please stop by to clean the pot? The room is available to all, but, please be responsible and clean up after yourself. Thank you. - The Office.

IMPORTANT DATES

September 29 Tuesday’s workshop

October 1 Diversity on TAP

October 2 Experimental Writing Workshop proposals due

October 12 Columbus Day

October 13 Monday class schedule will be followed

October 19 Mid Term Grade Report

October 23 Distinguished Teaching Award nomination due

November 25 – 30 Holiday

January 15, 2010 General Meeting

 
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