I have finally slapped myself enough to the point where I actually opened that darn gate. Yesterday, the only thing I did was stand in front of the gate, glaring at its beautiful– yet intimidating– lattices and filigree. Today, I used that costly key and opened the darn thing.

In other words, I have done a bit of practical work. I completed the first day’s worth of material.

This means I read the introduction in Wheelock’s Latin as well as watching the video tutorial introducing Latin. In addition, I completed the short quiz which followed the video; this quiz, I took twice, once because I had to and another time because I wanted a slightly better score. My first score was excellent but if it is easy to earn a higher score than I tend to take that time and invest it in getting that higher score.

This is why I retook the mandatory Course Expectations Quiz. This quiz was unusual in that I never before had to take such a quiz; essentially, it just was a brief test on the course and the how and why of the class structure. Though I earned a 14/17 on my first attempt, I realized I could bring my grade up if I invested a wee bit of time in reviewing my incorrect answers and submitting a new entry.

And I am glad that I did!

Even though the course has just begun and there are many assignments, and so whatever is due now is disproportionate to our overall grade, my work thus far– literally, that one test– earned me a B+. Not a bad grade, but with just a little bit of work, I could bring that up and I did: I now have an A+ just for retaking that Course Expectations Quiz.

What I enjoy about real-time grading schemes like this is that it enables me to turn my schoolwork into something like a meta-game. Assignments become mini-games, points become your grade, and extra-credit becomes unlocking those delicious secret mysteries. It adds just a tad bit extra oomph to completing assignments and makes one living with Depression, like myself, just a bit more motivated to get assignments in on time and to do a bit better.

Of course, all things are liable to change as the semester heats up and things become frenzied. But, for now, I like that I am setting a good example for myself; I took the extra time to put in the work and it shows. If I am able to keep it up, then this Latin intro should be a solid foundation for future study.

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