When I first began the transition to online coursework, I anticipated the day that it would begin to feel normal. Well, that day has not yet arrived, and considering that LDOC and finals are rapidly approaching I assume this new platform is still feeling strange to all of us. With many of my classmates, myself included, dealing with the stress of registering for Fall 2020 courses this week, the challenges of our current predicament are abundantly clear.
Luckily, the challenges we face do not go unnoticed in our weekly English 105 zoom meetings. Mr. Blom has provided the class with a document entitled “Things to do in Quarantine,” a compilation of books, websites, plays, and resources for further support that students can add to as well to help reduce the monotony of quarantine life that we all face. Additionally, students have been given an optional extra-credit opportunity in which we can discuss how the ongoing pandemic has affected us in any and all aspects of our lives.
Our Tuesday session began with a workshop of our UP3 storyboard, which is a basic outline of how our video for UP3 will be structured. Personally, I found this exercise to be helpful in developing a general direction of how I wanted to organize my video. Compiling video footage and voice-overs into a cohesive video essay in a new frontier for me, but one I am excited to explore. However, the class collectively expressed our anxiety regarding UP3. In response to our anxiety and in light of our extenuating circumstances, Mr. Blom has extended the due dates for UP3 into next week. I believe we are all grateful for the added time that this grants us to complete our projects. In addition, the class has been provided with resources to aid in the completion of our projects. On Wednesday our final grades for UP2 were released, much to the anticipation of many of our classmates, myself included.
On Thursday, our class discussed the genre models for video essays that we watched for homework between Tuesday and Thursday. Before this, however, Mr. Blom gave us the opportunity to share a weird or positive thing that has happened in this week. On Thursday I decided to speak up and share that I got accepted into a programming course next semester that can be difficult to get into. Each group watched one video and analyzed it on our lesson plan for the day. Instead of focusing on aspects of the video essays such as grammar and content, we analyzed the video essays on their form. The form of these video essays is the factor that can be translated into our own work. My group, the semicolons, analyzed a video essay on Hamlet. We developed critiques of the video that we could look out for when creating our own video essays. Personally, just seeing an example in form of the video essays we will be completing was very helpful and gave me ideas to incorporate into my own project, as I’m sure was the case for many others. The class shared again that we are nervous about the creation of our video essays, but Mr. Blom’s flexibility and the resources about Adobe premier that he has made available quell some of my anxiety.
Again, with finals approaching I wish everyone the best of luck during this strange time. Remember to stay home, stay safe, and wash your hands.