Defense variety show

It’s been a very busy day and it started at 5:20 am when I received a text from Beej asking if I was up to bowling today at E-Lanes after lunch.  Of course, I said yes.  — and had a decent game.

The weirdest of all, though was when I went to Erika’s school to watch and support her and her group mates in their research paper defense.  I have presented and attended a few of these over the years and this is the first time I ever encountered a defense that got turned into a variety show, with the teacher requiring the students to sing, dance, declaim, etc. for extra points — just like trained poodles to who want to please their master.  And the kids and parents are so desperate for the kids to have high marks that we do it!  I regret that when Erika asked me to sing for them I declined.  I didn’t realize that it was that serious.  The disappointment on Erika’s face was painful to see but I didn’t see why of the parents of the students in the group, why was I the only one getting “dragged into” helping them out?  And I knew for a fact there were 2 more there with me.

Let’s face it, a defense is not really the most exciting activity in the world, but making the kids and jump hoops for “doggie snacks” cannot be right.  Nor does it befit what is normally a formal event.  If it was really necessary to have intermissions of the sort to “lighten things up” then just have the intermission numbers.  The kids would do it anyway, whether or not you give them an extra grade.

Of course, that may mean their attention would be divided between their academics (the research paper) and the co-curricular (intermission number) but hey, such is life for a student!

Erika was so confident in her delivery.  I hope their group gets a good grade.