Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Slowflake Stew

The first homework assignment is due tomorrow and I've been fielding questions for several days. Most of it has been your standard vanilla kind of queries.

Last Monday, Slowflake Stew, came up to me after class. He's been having trouble with Method A. He asked if we could meet outside of class to discuss Method A. Sure! We went back and forth with our schedules and settled on a Wednesday appointment. Wednesday comes and Stew tells me he isn't ready to meet. I appreciate his honesty but isn't that the point of coming to office hours? He doesn't get it. He knows he doesn't get it. So prepared or not -- come darn it!

Stew then sets up a time to meet with me the next day (Thursday). Of course, he fails to show. No word. No email. I just wait for him.

Monday comes and Stew still doesn't get Method A. The homework, of course, is over Method A. He approached me after class.

Slowflake Stew: Unfortunately, I am still not getting Method A.

Captain Subtext Translation: I can't do my homework.

Me: OK. Why don't we meet in office hours?

Captain Subtext Translation: You should have come to meet with me last week.

[Appointment time in negotiated.]

SS: Well, the unfortunately the homework is due at 9AM and you can't meet with me until 3 hours later. Can we talk about ...?

Captain Subtext Translation: I'm not going to be able to get an A on the homework since you can't drop everything to tell me the homework answers before the homework is due. Can I turn in my homework after we meet?

Me: The homework is due at the end of class. But we can certainly go over Method A and the problems on the homework.

Captain Subtext Translation: What part of "No late homework accepted." didn't you understand? I told you in class the first day and it's written on the syllabus. And, why the heck did you skip our appointments last week? You should have taken care of this when we studied Method A two weeks ago.

I'll bet a beer he doesn't show tomorrow.


  1. I don't have a comment exactly, but I very much enjoyed the renewed appearance of Captain Subtext on this blog. Well done there. Let's hope she shows up more often.

  2. I love Captain Subtext! Captain Subtext should pop up in speech bubbles so students know what we're REALLY saying and that WE know what THEY're really saying.

    Plus this one sounds like it's time to remind of the student of the option to withdraw early from a class.

  3. I too greatly enjoy Captain Subtext. I see a webcomic in the future!


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