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Currently a student at the University of South Alabama majoring in secondary math education.I have a deep affinity for old typewriters, pens, and keys.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Blog Assignment 10

Three typical college students on a typical Sunday night working diligently in silence on their laptops.
Meteorology, Philosophy, Psychology, and Education.

An Open Letter To Education

"If this was 1999 I'd be saying great!"- Dan Brown
In the words of the internet: LOL.

"It's about empowering students to change the world for the better."

So, if you weren't aware of it, if you haven't been paying attention, or if you are unsure of what is going on. Welcome to EDM 310, this is our message.

As I have talked about in the past on this blog I have gained my education through a variety of resources. I have learned from doing, books, the internet, teachers, parents, friends, scoutmasters, and strangers on the street. I am in college for a degree, it's that simple. I want to be an educator and to do so I need a degree to prove I can be an educator.

I've sat in variety of classes with a variety of types of professors and we rarely our encouraged to collaborate. I remember in high school when they would refer to "the real world" and what it would be like. Well, college is a bit of the opposite. Instead of working with our peers we sit mere feet away not talking to each other for hours at a time. You might know one or two people in your classes, maybe more if your friends are pursuing the same degree as you. We go home to write our papers and do our work in solitary, because that is how college works. How about that real world though, in my experience you never work alone. There is always someone above, below, or with you on any given project.
We exorbitant amounts of money to sit in silence and take notes and even more for books we may or may not even need to open. We could just as easily view lectures, videos, lessons online. Read entire books with supplemental materials as hyperlinks right in the text. So why don't we do this, because self education still has a stigma on it.
I don't enjoy a majority of classes because I don't like sitting around taking notes. I like to take an active role in my learning in some way or another. I am a hands on person and I like to be occupied instead of occupying a seat. I do not like being assigned reading only to show up to class and have that reading summarized to me with a few bits of clip art. It's a waste of my time, it's a waste of the professors time, and it's a double waste of my money. We spend the majority of our time pursuing our degrees in classrooms learning bad habits of the old ways of teaching in areas. We do not get many opportunities to test out our skills and experiment, if at all. We are given little option in how our degree is pursued or even what our specialization shall be. It, much like life, is just not fair.
I want to learn, I am in college to learn. I also want to enjoy it and not feel like I am putting my money into something I could have accomplished quicker on youtube. I want to be challenge and forced to think, not sit in a room watching a clock tick by as I try to scratch as many words coming out of my professors onto paper as I can so I can read it later.

I realize I'm rambling a bit here but I want to bring it back to this class. How many people in this class do you know by name? Now how many of those people were not in your group assignment? I recently launched a call on twitter for people to work with our final projects and received one response. I enjoy that we collaborate and view each others work, that there is some peer revision. I like that we communicate outside of class for class with all kinds of people. I usually see the same three or four people in the lab every time I go there, which is actually less often than I'd really like to. Why do I want to go to the lab, because I like this class. Because I learn in this class and work and think and create. I also get real feedback which of course boosts my ego and sense of self-worth. The most I've ever gotten out of other classes is small notes in the margin of my paper.
This video is talking about what we are always talking about in EDM 310. Change is here and if you are not ready to go with it you'll be left behind. The world is changing and doing so rapidly. If you were not aware it's time to wake up and get ready, because we're the ones responsible for preparing the up and comers for the "real world".

Don't Let Them Take Pencils Home

I like it, a bit of an obtuse way of going about it but I like it. It shed some good humor on the subject but I'm a bit unclear on whether it was aimed more towards tablets or PCs in general. Then again it can be interpreted in a variety of ways such as a person drawing cause and effect generalizations from standardized test scores which can easily be untrue. Good humor, good fun, good message. I don't know if I would call it a must read but I did enjoy it.
Educate the parents, the kids, yourself and create some cohesion in the education environment. Get everyone interested in what's being taught and the students will be more inclined to learn and therefor learn more. Cohesion can make everything run a whole lot smoother.


  1. "I am in college for a degree, it's that simple."

    Well. I would strongly disagree. I would argue that you understand you need a degree to do what you want to do but that you are taking far more advantage of the time you spend here than others who have only a degree as their goal. You even say so your self: "I want to learn, I am in college to learn...I want to be challenge[d] and forced to think..."

    metaphors are often obtuse but they enhance our understanding because they are obtuse. If the reader/listener/observer understands the metaphor. You did. You are one of only 6 of 129 students in EDM 310 who identified the post as a metaphor in which pencils were computers.Please read my post Metaphors: What They Are and Why We Use Them (A Learning Opportunity). It contains a Special Assignment. I think you will find the comments that will be generated interesting. I am looking forward to your participation in the conversation.

  2. Nice work sir! while i don't necessarily agree with all of the points, ultimately you did a great job of presenting your experiences. I think every-one's interpretation of the video and post are really based o their own experiences thus far in college.