At what point does the grading pile move from intimidating to manageable? When do I feel as if I've reached the peak and it's all downhill from here? With freshman essays, the magic number is 6: I'll postpone, procrastinate, and piddle around between papers until I have only 6 left, and then I'll grade one after another without a break until they're done.
I'm not there yet. When I look back at everything I've graded this week, I ought to feel as if the end is very near: one set of researched essays and one set of final essay exams in the novel class; a final essay exam in the Concepts of Nature class; and one set of synthesis essays and one set of final exams in Sports Literature. That's a huge pile of grading already done, but somehow the freshman essays loom like Mount Everest over my desk.
I've graded a few but I have 10 more left, and that's just enough to feel impossible. Compared to all the grading I've already done, how can 10 measly papers carry such weight? I'll never be able to slog through this mountain of essays! It simply can't be done!
But it can be done and it will be done because I'm going to do it. Just four more before I reach the magic number, and then it's downhill all the way. It's as easy as falling off a cliff!