Thursday, January 17, 2013

Time's up!

The prompt for the first reading response I assigned my Oulipo students asked them to consider the nature of constraint and the impact one constraint in particular has on their individual lives: "pick some sort of constraint that governs your work life, your school life, or your personal life, and write about the way in which it affects your perception of and action in the world we share together."

Should I be surprised that four of the nine students whose reflections I've read so far zeroed in on "time" as a constraint, complaining that they've not got enough time in the day to do all they feel they need to do? I know these kids, Honors students all, are the driven, the determined, the year-after-year best-and-brightest, but I'm beginning to worry about them. Admittedly, it's taken me a long time to learn this lesson, but I know it now (though I don't always heed it): productivity makes a poor yardstick when it comes to measuring how well the day's been done.

Maybe tomorrow I'll bring a carafe of white Russians and a copy of The Big Lebowski to class.

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