Quick Recap of SMC’s Parents & Family Weekend Session “Classroom as Kitchen Table” with a shout out by author Mitali Perkins

On Saturday, October 22, at SMC’s Parent & Family Weekend, “Classes Without Quizzes,” I got to meet 25 parents and family members who were eager “to see Saint Mary’s through their kids’ eyes.” In my session, titled “Classroom as Kitchen Table: Education Through Conversation and Feeding Hungry Minds,” we read aloud Sandra Cisneros’ deceptively simple short short “Eleven.” As always this bittersweet narrative got the packed classroom buzzing and was the perfect inspiration for us to dive into our own childhood memories for a little creative writing exercise of our own. Here’s a quick review from one of the parents I met at the session, author Mitali Perkins:

I’m back from parents’ weekend at Saint Mary’s College of California where we attended classes without quizzes. I, of course, signed up for a writing class taught by Rashaan Meneses, who led us through a brilliant workshop on enhancing voice with detail.

You can read the rest of her recap along with her creative exercise from our class session in her post “Writing the Empty Nest at Parents’ Weekend” at her blog Mitali’s Fire Escape.

Presenting “The Classroom as Kitchen Table” at SMC’s Parent & Family Weekend’s “Classes Without Quizzes”

Along with my fellow SMC colleagues, I’ll be presenting my class without quiz, “The Classroom as Kitchen Table: Education Through Conversation and Feeding Hungry Minds” where we’ll be reading Sandra Cisneros “Eleven” discussing and analyzing the text, and, if there’s time, we’ll do some creative writing of our own. Should be fun!

Parent and Family Weekend 2011

NOTE: Schedule subject to change

Saturday, October 22nd

8:30am                        Parent and Family Check in

9:00 – 10:00am         Breakfast

10:15 – 11:15am      Classes without Quizze- Families take 1hr long classes from
various academic disciplines

11:20am – 12:20pm Student Support Mini Seminars – Staff share ways to support your student                                          regardless of class standing

12:30 – 1:30pm         Lunch

1:30pm                        Day in the Bay – Enjoy your afternoon with your students!

Schedule of Events for ACTC @ SMC, Friday, October 21, 4-9pm

ACTC@SMC is the presentation/discussion in our community of the contributions of SMC faculty at last spring's national conference of the Association for Core Texts and Courses. Each of 8 SMC attendees gave a 15 minute presentation, focused on a core text, at a panel. The authors considered ranged from Sappho to Rousseau to Kafka.

Reprising these presentations at the College has resulted in an engaging, stimulating exchange, with lively discussions ensuing – the sort of fun that attracted us in the first place to this business of professoring . The schedule, subject to minor revision of times, is as follows

date: Friday, October 21

place: Br. Gary York classroom


4:00 first session

6:00 dinner

7:00 second session

9:00 adjournment

Presenters include:
Bob Gardner / Deanne Kruse
Rashaan Meneses on "Engaging First Generation Students with Jean Jacques Rousseau's Discourse on Inequality"
Patrick Downey
Grete Stenersen
Chad Arnold
Br. Ken Cardwell
Ken Parker
Charles Hamaker

ACTC @ SMC and Parent & Family Weekend’s “Classes Without Quizzes”

Two exciting upcoming events for this week include:

Presenting my paper “Engaging First Generation Students with Jean Jacques Rousseau’s ‘Discourse on Inequality’ for ACTC @ SMC, Friday, October 21, 4-9pm, Brother York Arcade at Saint Mary’s College. Paper was originally presented at the 17th Annual ACTC Conference in New Haven, CT, sponsored by Yale University.

Participating in Saturday, October 22, SMC’s  Parent & Family Weekend’s “Classes Without Quizzes” where I’ll engage parents of students with some creative reading & writing that includes an oldie but goodie text, Sandra Cisneros’ “Eleven,” which always makes for great conversation and engaged analysis. Que divertido! I still need a title for my class tho…Oye.

Excerpt from “Recap on ‘The Places We Call Home’ Literary Event at Eastwind Books of Berkeley

"The Places We Call Home" at Eastwind Books of Berkeley, September 29, 2011

Here’s a sample of what went down at Eastwind Books of Berkeley on Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thanks to Veronica Montes, Bea & Harvey, Eastwind Books managers, who organized the event taking place Thursday, September 29, 2011, which kicked off the International Filipino Book Festival, where Cecilia Manguerra Brainard, Oscar Bermeo, Veronica Montes, Barbara Jane Reyes, Sunny Vergara Jr. and myself read to a packed house.

Bea had a pot of adobo to greet everyone, and the reading commenced with Oscar Bermeo reading from his chapbooks Anywhere Avenue, Palimpsest, Heaven Below and To the Break of Dawn. Some lines that struck bone include the following:

…those born near the sea carry a sense of salt…

born near the Pacific Ocean

…mother and aunt clean the ocean harvest…

the Atlantic tried to wash its taste out of me

For a full report, check out Ruelle Electrique’s post here.