Bex: Crazy Timetable

2009 So Far
This year has been amazing so far. I returned from Oak Hall in November, just as the credit crunch hit, really unsure where/whether I’d be able to get work, but returned to Winchester, as I knew I had a good reputation there, and was sure I could pick up a few bits! Friends put me up in their spare room whilst I applied for work, but after about 3 months, I had enough bits and pieces coming in to rent a room closer to the University of Winchester, where I was picking up most of my work, with every small project leading to another one… and at one point having to turn down work!

In May, I wasn’t sure how I was going to get through the summer, as teaching was coming to an end, but I picked up a couple of summer projects, went to France with Oak Hall, and in fact haven’t completed my own studies this summer, and teaching commences again next week! I then started conversations with a few others, and look what’s happening now…

2009-2010 Timetable
Semester 1 (Finishes 5th February)
I have quite a full timetable (all modules include preparation/marking):

  • Monday 3-6: Introduction to Media Studies
  • Tuesday 9-12: 20th Century British History
  • Wednesday 10-11: Landmark (The Internet as a Landmark in History)
  • Wednesday 1.30-5: STUDYING the PGCLTHE + associated 3 x 4,000 word projects
  • Thursday: 7.5 hours “Blended Learning Research Fellowship“, including Learning Website
  • 5 Final Year Project Students for Media Studies (Due 5th May 2010)
  • Media Studies Website (for March 2010)
  • History Website (for March 2010)
  • SkillsNet Website (Content, Staff/Student Evaluation)

To also fit in:


  • Cooking at Lauterbrunnen for Christmas Week
  • New Year, who knows yet…
  • Complete VD poster article. Start to think about Book Proposal (Thesis to Book – note am not necessarily expecting to submit)
  • Get ready for semester 2!

Semester 2 (Finishes 18th June)
I have an extremely full timetable:

  • Monday 3-5: Introduction to Media Studies
  • Wednesday 9-12: Dreams and Nightmares
  • Thursday 9-11: Film History
  • Thursday 11-3 (2 hours of): Creating and Consuming History
  • Friday 9-12: Researching Media Studies
  • 2 hours for 6 weeks: Reflecting
  • History Independent Study Module, Dissertation/Second Marking
  • Tuesday or Friday: 7.5 hours “Blended Learning Research Fellowship
  • 5 Final Year Project Students for Media Studies (Due 5th May 2010)
  • Media Studies Website (for March 2010)
  • History Website (for March 2010)
  • SkillsNet Website (Content completion – for May 2010)
  • Adding French content to ARCA website (awaiting translations).
  • Been asked if I’ll teach 4 weeks on ‘History of Public Health’ and 6 weeks on ‘Design for Digital Media’ – hmmm

To also fit in:


  • A week away in Cornwall with my housegroup – woot!

The summer is yet some time away, and the Blended Learning is permanent, so I guess if I’m sensible with my money… Although waiting for the dates of Oak Hall in Israel, and may go there next September… I know it’s quite tiring, but invigorating in other ways.

So if you’re wondering why I go quiet for long periods of time, this may kind of explain it, as there’s usually approximately 3 hours of preparation for each hour of teaching… and then the marking, well, we try not to think about the marking (e.g. Intro to Media, around 40 students, 2 assignments, about 1/2 hour + per assignment)! Some weeks there’s tutorials, and some courses run alternate weeks rather than all term, so manageable – with a few late nights, I suspect!


Some books, and an attempt at creative writing…

Do It Tomorrow
A book I picked up from The Discovery Centre in Winchester is ‘Do it Tomorrow‘ by Mark Forster, which I have found quite liberating, even just putting a couple of his tips into action over the last 2-3 days, and am slowly getting myself a bit more sorted and prioritised (rather than spending ALL my time trying to find a job, I still want to get some of my other projects moving). I thought I was pretty good at time management – I completed a PhD after all, that doesn’t happen on it’s own, however I am guilty of trying to do too much and of getting distracted by what comes in! Mark works on a system of ‘Closed Lists’, allowed space for some urgent things to crop up. He urges us to have a default of “I’ll do it tomorrow” for everything we’re asked to do, as we can only do one days one in one day, and PLAN for tomorrow, and just do one days work in one day!!! If people know that when you say you’ll do it tomorrow, you really will, efficiency levels will improve. It’ll take practice but it’s an unusual approach and I think it works!

The Write Brain
I picked up this book “The Write Brain” by Bonnie Neubauer last year, and it’s in my pile of “things to do”. Yesterday, I decided that I was going to do ONE exercise from this book at least 5 days out of 10 (along with my plan, which is going pretty well, to read at least one chapter of The Message every day). So, I’ve done it for the past 2 days… it promises only 10 minutes for an exercise as you shouldn’t think too much about what you’re writing…! So, here’s today’s exercise (you may see a few more of these):

Resolution Revolution
Use each letter as you get to it (marked in bold): New Year’s resolutions make me…

Nervous because no one ever sticks to them! It has just become a joke for everyone – no one thinks “Well, I must do it”, yet every year everyone does it, every year we all make the same tired old promises but set no action plans to go with them. Over and over again we resolve to lose weight, to write that book, to stick with whatever we promised someone! Over and over again this falls through. We make no definite plans to see us through to the next stage. However, if we saw each days as a new day, fresh and new with lovely chance to do u-turns, and focus on ourselves and what we want to achieve/contribute to the world then we just commit to making that first step, then the next step, over the course of time those small steps will build up to a great journey, fulfilling God’s purpose in our lives!

And that was it… There’s an option at the base of each page to do more. Today’s was “New Year’s resolutions are passé. Think New Day resolutions instead. What new writing-related thing do you resolve to do in the next 24 hours?

Mine are:

  • Do tomorrow’s exercise in ‘The Write Brain’
  • Work on my review for ‘Easy Virtue’ for Damaris Culturewatch (already part-way there)
  • Add another entry to the blog (this one!)