Saturday, November 7, 2009


The worst part is done - starting! I swear the run up is way worse than the actual in teaching, you just spend so much time getting ready - each powerpoint took a day or more to complete, and yet in just two hours you're done. It did go well, no major issues (one minor inability to sync my computer with the projector, but resolved quickly) and seem to go down well, especially the Jacques Cousteau clip I decided to show at the end of the lecture. It's interesting to do undergrads, there are just so many of them! After the first lecture I had a guy come down and say he was late into the lecture and missed the iClicker quiz (which he would get points for attendance with) and whether he could still have the points. Considering I stared 5 minutes late, and the quiz was ten minutes in, I said no. As he was walking off huffed he actually said, "where there was little point in me coming to that wasn't there". Oh yeah, because lord knows you might actually learn something!

I had many good comments though, one girl came down after the second session and asked where I was from. She also then said that she thought I presented the theories on the origin of life (which include Divine Creation) very respectfully, and also mentioned she thought the geologist (who had taught earlier in the semester) wasn't so much. So that made me feel good, i'd been nervous about presenting that. It's a hot topic here in the US, in some states you can't even teach Evolution, so I wanted to present the different theories without offending anyone, but still making clear which were "Science" and which were "Philosophies", and which are the most respected and proved. I didn't think I did that great a job, so it was good to hear. It's a topic that I "needed" to cover, so i'm looking forward to getting on to the fun side of Marine Biology!

So this weekend I just need to get ready for my next one on Monday. My entire friday was eaten up with teaching, still dealing with the Hazmat clean-up of the lab and TONS of paperwork, and then a TA meeting I had to attend. Then, rather nicely, I went to Jenny and Doug's for pizza and G&T after Hannah's bedtime - Doug's mom is here, it was so nice to see her. It was a really fun evening!

And with that, I am so glad this week is over. Here are some pictures of the "pool trials" of our little ROV. Went well, though a few things to seal up.

It's little, but surprisingly powerful. We were actually amazed at how fast this thing goes - of course in the pool, so the next test is out in open water. I am hoping to take this little ROV to Alaska to look for corals in Glacier Bay National Park next year.

Two divers in the water to keep an eye on it - this is it's first test and there is a small crack in the dome that hasn't been replaced yet. The dome did leak a little, but not enough to abort the test.
The test went well, there is a short with the lights that needs sealing up, but otherwise a really good pool test. The next step is to seal up the dome and the lights and take it out on the boat.


nicola@which name? said...

i am so glad the first lecture went well and good for you for covering such a touchy topic with sensitivity!

LSULiv said...

Nice work on the lecture-- especially if a student complimented you on it. You've really gotta meet my old roommate and my friend Sean Knutson at UH. It would be a marine bio party :)