Given that this is my fourteenth year of teaching, mid-term exams are not new to me. Every year for the past fourteen I have written and given to each of my classes a two-hour, multi-part and multi-page exam that requires time and effort to correct.
Like my yearly promise to start Christmas shopping early, I again promised myself that I wouldn't wait until the last minute to correct them. I even had multiple snow days to correct some of them (from the four of eight exams we were able to give before being interrupted by the last storms and subsequent roof clean up efforts)--before or after shoveling out my car. But again I broke my promise to myself, and waited until the last minute.
Unlike Christmas shopping, where it's okay to surrender and decide that what you have purchased is what you will wrap and give, because you cannot handle another parking lot or check out line, there is no such luxury when it comes to correcting midterms. There is a column in my electronic gradebook with MIDTERM at the top that needs numbers by 7:30 a.m. tomorrow, which is why I spent the better part of today, a sunny Sunday, finally getting the rest of my midterms exams corrected.
But I'm not done. Between now and then, now and and when I can finally go to bed, another stack of lab reports awaits my purple pen.
One day I'll learn.