Thursday, December 13, 2012

no.2 pencil. armed terrorist. bag of doritos.

Check out the RHS Dead Writers Society

thanks game plan group

It was great to see the way the "Game Plan" group integrated Coach Wooden's philosophy into what you've done this semester.  I especially liked the quote about leading out front with a banner instead of behind with a whip.  Here is the letter Coach wrote for me when I was seventeen:

coach wooden recommendation

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

final presentations

Here are the final presentations. If you don't see yours here please email the link or embed code. no exit by kateporraz on GoAnimate

Animation Software - Powered by GoAnimate.

LINK: To Blog or Not to Blog


semester endgame

On Friday, December 14 we will plan next steps for the break and discuss next semester.  To prepare for that conversation please answer the following questions on your blog in a post entitled, "Fall Semester Reflection." 

  1. Do you read your colleagues’ work online?  How often? What is it like to read their work? How does being able to see everyone’s work online at any given time change the way you do your work?
  2. How has the publicly and always visible course blog made this course different from one without a blog?  How would the course change if the course blog disappeared tomorrow?
  3. Has publishing your work for the public to see changed your approach to completing an assignment? How so?  How would your feelings about the course change if you couldn’t publish your work that way?
  4. Has your experience of the physical classroom changed because of the open & online aspects?  Where does your learning actually happen?  
  5. You were described in the Macarthur Foundation/DML  interview as “a pioneer”-- how do you describe the experience on the edge to people who haven’t been there (friends and family)?
  6. How do they respond when you describe the brave new world in which you’re working?
  7. What do their responses mean to you?  What effect(s) (if any) do they have on you?

Monday, December 10, 2012

MIT & us

Q: What do MIT and RHS have in common (besides Megan)? 

A: An open approach to social media and innovation.

the world you're preparing (for)

This morning a friend sent me an article about IBM's use of social media.  I was surprised to discover how closely our learning experience in this community parallels working in one of the world's most successful organizations. 

As of publication IBM was #2 on Business Week‘s best global brands list, with nearly 400,000 employees across 170 countries

"At 114 years old, IBM seems to be the Madonna of the corporate world, staying relevant from decade to decade. The first company to build a mainframe computer and help NASA land a man on the moon still holds more patents than any other U.S.-based technology company.

As it turns out, its decentralized social media approach is another milestone in the company’s history—driving unprecedented collaboration and innovation.

IBM lets employees talk—to each other and the public—without intervention. With a culture as diverse and distributed as IBM’s, getting employees to collaborate and share makes good business sense."

What can we learn from this?  What can IBM learn from us?

struggle for smarts

Here is a look at how Eastern and Western cultures approach learning.

(Thanks for sending, Mr. Greeley!)

and now for something completely different

Over the weekend our friend Cory Doctorow posted an item on Boing Boing about this school

December 10


1. Blog analytics
2. Finalize presentations/presentation day logistics

1. Finishing touches on presentations
2. Any outstanding blog/hard copy work

Friday, December 7, 2012

could boredom be curable?

From Dave Pell's Next Draft:

"Boredom can be boring. But it can also be dangerous and "has been implicated in drug use and alcoholism, problematic gambling and compulsive behavior -- and has even been tied to potentially lethal errors in job execution." A group of psychologists looked at nearly every study on the topic and came up with what they believe is the root cause of boredom. Now they are wondering: Could boredom be curable?"

December 7


1. Prepare for final presentations: content & logistics
2. Blog analytics

1. Double-check that your blog is complete
2. Literature analysis work (#5 due BY Monday 12.10)

Thursday, December 6, 2012

health dummies essay geniuses?

"A strong body makes the mind strong." -Thomas Jefferson

There are still 20 minutes left in the final exam and two people--Kayla and E'Ana-- have already turned in their essays.

Might the "health dummies" be onto something?

December 6


1. Lit analysis work
2. Presentation prep: bring materials and final proposal decisions for in-class workshop Friday.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

our chat with amanda lyons

It was great to be able to talk with Amanda Lyons today about visual learning and techniques like strategic doodling. Thanks, Amanda! 

(Here's the drawing I did.  For better examples-- like Ming's-- check out the Member Blogs. )
visual learning with amanda

December 5


[There isn't one. Please turn in your completed journal for the semester.]

1. Preliminary vocab final grade report
2. Tomorrow's essay exam
3. Next week's presentations

1. Think
2. Plan
3. Lit analysis work

Monday, December 3, 2012

vocabulary final tips

Tomorrow's exam will require you to define some words, provide antonyms for others, and create meaning with as many as you can in the time you have left.  Intensify your effort but don't get anxious.  This is what Coach Wooden defined as competitive greatness in his Pyramid of SuccessA real love for the hard battle, knowing it offers the opportunity to be at your best when your best is required.

December 4


1. Lit analysis work
2. Complete your fall semester journal and bring to class on Wednesday, December 5
3. Review your essay notes to prepare for Thursday's essay exam

kudos: november

Congratulations to the following students on their college acceptances and scholarship wins!

Kayla Stevens (Chamber of Commerce scholarship)
Felitas Ruiz (Chamber of Commerce scholarship)
Abby Kuhlman (Chamber of Commerce scholarship, Elks Scholarship)
Kaitlyn Furst (Comcast scholarship)
Michelle Arriaga (Chamber of Commerce scholarship, Elks Scholarship, CFW Foundation scholarship, admitted to CSU Fresno, admitted to CSU Fullerton)
Dani Galindo (admitted to CSU Fresno)
Sebastian Guillen (admitted to CSU Fresno)
Troy Prober (admitted to Northern Arizona University)
Jenna Halop (admitted CSU Fullerton)
Travis Knight (Elks scholarship)

If I missed anyone, or if you've done something amazing since I posted this, please let me/us know in class.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

December 3

JOURNAL TOPIC: [today's tunes: "We Are Family" by Sister Sledge; "'All in the Family' TV Theme [Those Were the Days]; "The Gang's All Here" by Dropkick Murphys; "Spirit Nation" by Spirit Nation]
Jane Neville (née Howard), Countess of Westmorland (1533/1537 – buried 30 June 1593), daughter of Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey and Frances de Vere (according to Wikipedia), is quoted as follows:

“Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.”

Who is in your tribe/network/family?  Are all the members in the same circle or in different ones?  How do your relationships influence your character, your decisions, and your direction in life?  As you contemplate moving into a new chapter in your life, how will you add on to your network and/or construct new ones?

1. Journal
2. Last-ditch vocab review
3. Schedule and end-of-semester logistics 
4. Group/individual work 

1. Last chance vocab
2. Lit analysis work (light)
3. Presentation work (light)
4. NOTE: your journal is due for final credit at the beginning of class on Wednesday, December 5

fall semester home stretch

Hi Everyone,

Here is the end game for the semester.  Please note the change: the vocabulary final exam will be Tuesday, December 4.  The day after tomorrow.  Bright side: you'll be glad to have it over with.  Bright side (II): you'll have a day to recover before the essay.  

Vocabulary Final: Tuesday, December 4

Essay Final: Thursday, December 6

Presentation: during 2-hour block week of 12.10

We've been at this nearly five months and you've earned a break.  Hang in there and good luck this week.

2 new collaborative working groups

Hey Everyone,

Check these out!


Contact Ubi for more information.

final presentations

Pondering your presentation preparation?

In contrast to Wednesday's vocabulary final, which will be about as formal and anti-fun as you can imagine, and Thursday's essay final, which will require you to organize and articulate your expertise on multiple texts and literary elements, and which will probably make your pen-wielding muscles ache, your final presentation



This is your opportunity to showcase:
  • What you've learned for the first time;
  • What you've improved the most;
  • What you've done best;
  • What you want to learn more about;
  • What you know;
  • Your strengths and talents.
That's it.

(Imagined) Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How will we be graded?
A: Creative/effective communication of a topic that convinces your audience that you've mastered an element of the course = A.

Q: What tools/media can we use to create our presentation?
A: Anything that doesn't harm sentient beings or break any laws/school policies.  Except posters.  No posters.

Q: Is there a time limit?
A: Sort of.  We will be limited by the number of presenting groups in each two-hour final period.  However, if you use online media we can direct the audience to your site for the overtime.  This may be an interesting way to augment/replace what I have in mind over the break.  If your group has planned a presentation that you know won't fit into the final period schedule in its entirety, please plan on showing the "directors' highlights" and walking your audience through it.  Please remember-- and this goes for everyone-- to leave a couple of minutes for Q&A.

Q: Can we collaborate with students in other classes?
A: Yes.  You may collaborate with anyone on Earth.  Extra credit if you collaborate with anyone not on Earth.

Don't forget the secret ingredient.  Please plan to submit your group's proposal in class on Monday, December 3.  Have fun and comment to this post with questions/ideas.