What If They ALL Navigate?

Ok, first let me say that I know I was supposed to post notes on Friday and didn’t. I’ve been getting over a cold and hardly slept for three nights in a row. It was a difficult week to get anything done as I was either coughing everywhere or passing out from lack of sleep.

So let’s get this show back on the road, shall we?

Last week I met with one of my classes (because UNC started classes on Tuesday and my other class meets on Mondays). I went over the syllabus, how I had structured it, and how grades would be done. This meant that students got to choose if they wanted to follow a traditional path or choose the path of the navigator.

I showed the directions for the traditional path first and explained that I had laid out what they needed to do to make it through the class. Just do all the assignments that are not marked with an asterisk and turn things in when it says to on the schedule. That will get you through the course just fine.

Then I showed them the navigator option. Someone immediately noticed that the list of quests was the same as with the traditional path. Yes, BUT none of them are marked. You get to design your own path and turn things in whenever you want. I shared with them some of my fears about having constructed the navigator option which are primarily:

  • everyone will turn in everything at the last minute
  • people will opt out of some quests but go deeper in others (not sure why this is a fear for me)

But, I said, I was going to let it ride and we’d see what happened. Someone asked me what I would do if everyone picked the traditional path. I’m not sure what I said, but really, what would there be to do? It’s their choice, and technically selecting the traditional path makes my life easy as it means things just run like a traditional class.

At the end of the night students had to submit their decision about what path they wanted to be on. I figured there would probably be a mix. But then I started going through what they had said and I slowly realized that every single person had selected Path of the Navigator.

I think the words, “Oh crap,” immediately popped into my head though I’m not sure why. I mean, if everyone just self-selected into the same path then that should make things a bit easier on me. I only have to think about one path in my head. But now I’m left wondering what this semester will look like since everyone (at least in this class) is going to be charting their own path to their own grade at their own pace.

Here goes nothing!

One Year Ago Today


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