In a mandatory certification class, I was assigned to explore one of the generations other than my own, and then discuss how what I learned will impact my teaching. The assignment is well designed and I intend to steal it, but given my  immersion in pop culture studies and interest in the generational divide, I didn’t learn much new about generational differences. Since the topic is relevant to the blog, I’m reposting what I wrote:   Talkin’ bout my generation, sorta (sorry, not sorry)   I am answering the assignment differently. Because Gen-X special snowflake syndrome. I’m quite familiar with generational differences, so I didn’tRead More →

Again. People are talking about the VARK again. Most research has discredited the VARK. Just Google it and you’ll see the debate pop up right away. But I still like it, the same way I like astrology, Tarot cards, and various other personality tests. The VARK is a framework that can over-determine or define people once we buy into it too much, and any framework or typography can lose its helpfulness if its overly rigid (hardening of the categories”). Lately, I have been rethinking my commitment to this schema, and why I like it, because POD folks trash it regularly. Their skepticism and rejection isRead More →

Learning about learning, Part I The VARK I know my VARK and where I fall on the inventory of learning styles: Visual. Auditory. Read/Write. Kinesthetic. Someone recently asked me if I remembered Amy Grant’s song, “Every Heartbeat.” My reply: “Yeah, that’s the song where she’s wearing that cute polka dot dress and big sunglasses and there’s a dog. Like, she’s trying to be Taylor Dayne, but without sex.” Clearly, I am not an auditory learner even though I suffer from severe blabbativity and motor-mouthedness. I type super-duper fast, and I suffer from a rampant twitch-speedery that developed over years of living online as a digitalRead More →

Generation Splat. Generation*. Millennials. Generation X. Generation Jones. Generation Splat. What’s that, you say? Well, a splat is an asterisk or a wildcard used in a computer search string to represent “whatever.” If I want to search for all the Laura(s) in a database, I would search for Laura*. Now let’s make a link to something seemingly tangential: Gaming. The gaming community expanded the meaning of splat to a metaphor and popularized it with the slang term “splat book.” A splat book refers to the specialized books that publishers release about subcategories used for creating roleplaying characters. To illustrate, the White Wolf company publishes anRead More →

Today I had a hot flash in my office, which is a feat since my office is ice-box cold. My cheeks got red, my hair clung to my neck, and I got prickly both emotionally and physically. It was a full-fledged where’s-my-chainsaw inferno. To celebrate the hotflash in this blog entry, I searched for an amusing yet affirming cartoon-like picture of a uterus – something Alison Bechdel might draw or Betty White might have laughed at, oh, thirty years ago. All the uteri out there are hungry for babies, not old and happy to retire.  Pictures abound of pregnant women, women with headaches,  and relativelyRead More →

I’m a paper pile person, and although I have an abiding obsession with time management systems, I always felt inspired to let the paper dragon frolic. Now I’m drowning in data and trapped in its undertow. As people around me sign up for various cults of productivity apps, I find myself overwhelmed by choosing which cult to join. The whole thing makes me throw my hands up in the air, which defeats the purpose of organization systems in the first place. After letting the elephant of Evernote, the blue box of Dropbox, and every other eye-candy logo capture my attention, I’ve opted for the simplestRead More →

My grandmother was a grassroots politician, not a legislator. To me that distinction is essential. It gave her a clarity of vision that made things simple; she moved through a world in which the work was hard but the logic was unquestionable. Where she moved, people followed. Yesterday at RootsCamp I heard some of her clarity. The keynote speaker was Frank Curiel, a labor organizer of forty years’ experience, who talked about what grassroots work means. You go to the hall, you see the people there, you talk to them, and you listen. The backdrop of listening, in his case, was the farm and fieldRead More →