Picture this marriage:
A beautiful day outside + the Sunken Gardens + my 400-level Language Patterns class + 2 weeks left of classes + burnout
I never thought I would, either…until today.
In linguistics, we’re known for being a little, well, out of the box nerdy. But today my language patterns professor broke the glass ceiling and reached new heights by designing a set of games to play in the Sunken Gardens that would allow the class to get their energy (or lack thereof) out, in the form of, you guessed it, language morphology and classification.
The entire class lined up and made a long sentence where each student was a word, something that ended up being along the lines of a bullfrog and a diamond merchant who played monopoly with a snappy baby dinosaur (obviously). We then identified which students were the heads of clauses, which students belonged syntactically with which other students, switched around to be head-initial or head-final, laughed a lot, and yes, we even held hands.
As if this wasn’t good enough – we then played “Creek Tag” (Creek being a Native American language my professor does work with) and students ran off like crazy people through the Sunken Gardens as other students and tour groups stared on in wonder and amazement.
I must say it was one of the funniest, TWAMPiest classes I have probably ever had at W&M. At William and Mary – diversity manifests itself in many forms, teaching pedagogy primary amongst them. Our professors are some of the most gifted, bright, and (we are reminded) creative in the nation. The class seemed to thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to blow off some steam, laugh aloud, and play tag with our professor.
I think at this point in the semester we can all appreciate the little opportunities to fool around – even if we are forced to learn a little bit in the process.
Enjoy the beautiful last days of the month, readers!