A Catalogue, of Sorts
I've been back in the ‘Couv for almost two weeks now, and I’ve been flat out pretty much since my plane landed! School this semester is already busy and demanding, and there’s so many people with whom to catch up about Christmas and New Years that I don’t have much time to dawdle around the internet - or, at least, as much as I had last semester.
I’m taking three courses this semester. One is called New Media for Children and Young Adults. I decided to take it for several reasons: 1. I love YouTube, Twitter, Tumblr, blogs, and all those avenues for self-expression on the internet, 2. I was advised it would be a good course to take by my supervisor, and 3. I heard the prof was great. All of those things are still true, but it’s also bru-tal. I consider myself to be fairly adept at computers, at least in the sense that I learn quickly, but I feel slightly retarded in that class. It’s sort of boys v. girls class as well: the three guys are all uber tech savvy and bring their aluminum MacBooks to class, while the three ladies still use the archaic pen and paper to take notes. I have to lead a seminar, which I had cleverly avoided for the entirety of my undergraduate career, and now I don’t know how to do it. This class may or may not be the death of me. I’ll keep you posted.
My second class is Canadian Literature for Children. It’s taught by Judi Saltman, the head of the MA in Children’s Lit program, and an absolute wealth of knowledge on Canadian Literature. I’m fairly certain she knows everything about every Canadian writer, illustrator, and publisher. It is impossible to listen to Judi’s lectures and *not be inspired and impassioned by her love of Canadian content. Judi is also good friends with Kit Pearson, whose books are the reason I applied for this program. I have loved Kit Pearson since I read The Sky is Falling when I was eleven years old. Kit will be visiting our class on March 8th, and I made sure that there will be plenty of time for pictures and autographs and gushing over her work. I will also, perhaps obviously, dedicate a blog to that event once it happens!
Finally, I’m taking another Language and Literacy Education class, this one about trends and issues in teaching children’s literature. There’s only six of us in the class, and the other five are teachers. Last night we spent half of the class talking about how to introduce novels in verse into the classroom, then spent the rest of it cutting and pasting a storyboard. Best.class.ever. I took a class with the prof, Kathie, last semester and I thought she was just so lovely that I had to take another class with her. She has such a vast knowledge of illustrated books, a knowledge base that I want to build, so I’m lucky to have her as as resource available to me.
In other news:
The weather since I’ve been back has been incredible. Aside from a few days of snow and/or rain (usually a combination of the two, so it ends up snowing slush), most days have been precipitation free and warm. While St. John’s has been snowed and rained in, I’ve been walking about campus, wearing a cardigan and watching lawns being mowed. The SFU campus in Burnaby shut down for a day when there was an inch of snow, and yesterday the Environment Canada had a “Snowfall Warning” for Vancouver: 2cm. I could really, really get used to this winter.
I’ve been having a grand time gallivanting around the city. Michelle and I, accompanied by her cousin and friend, saw the Body Worlds exhibit at the Science Centre. I had read about it in my history of medicine course I took at MUN, and it was super interesting to see the human body used as both an art form and an educational tool. I finally met the esteemed Andrew and Natalie Poirier and spent a lovely Sunday afternoon with them and my cousin Paul. I finally did my due diligence to Matt Damon and saw True Grit with Jeanette (great movie, by the way. Funny, well written, good acting, and a great homage to the Westerns of old). The Writing Centre girls got together for a final to-do before Marion moved back to Newfoundland. We broke out the old school Dutch Blitz and had an uncharacteristically tame game.
In further other news:
Another room mate has moved out! Now we’re down to two of us in the apartment. It’s nice because we have more fridge and cupboard space, and we each have our own bathrooms. It’s also odd, because now I’m alone a lot in the apartment. My last remaining roomie, Shelly, is very quiet and rarely around, so everything is almost eerily silent. I really like that there’s only two of us left, though, because I have so much more room to enjoy cooking in the kitchen. I’m not sure if we’ll be getting any more room mates, but I’ll enjoy it while it lasts.
Happy weekend, all!