Willingness to Engage

Can’t say enough about Dylan Marron and his podcast Conversations with People Who Hate Me. His strategy of holding space for people who have published racist and homophobic things about him is evidence that there is incredible power in having these conversations, if only we are willing to engage.

NYTimes has an interview in today’s magazine section. Although given an unfortunate title, it’s worth reading and hopefully inspires a visit to his podcast.



Google victims

6th grader in a social studies class learning about Ancient China, on completing his 24/7 report on the Tang Dynasty (students present on a topic for 24 seconds, then summarize with a 7 word sentence, based on the Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony):  They developed a great orange breakfast drink.


Teacher’s response: Have a seat, we need to talk about how to use Google.

How do we support students to think when they’re searching on the Internet?


Google Tools — New Templates

Many of my colleagues are reluctant to use google docs, spreadsheets, or presentation slides because of perceived limitations — but they have improved steadily over the past few years. And now there are some great templates available to make collaborative work easier and more professional. Visit docs.google.com, sheets.google.com, or slides.google.com to check out what’s available.

Great Resource from NY Public Library

In my early days as a designer in NYC — long before I thought about becoming a teacher — I was a photo researcher for Doubleday publishing. I happily haunted the NY Public Library picture archives, searching for just the right image tucked away in the miles of shelves in their midtown location.

I’m thrilled to be able to access the digitized version of those musty shelves. This is a treasure trove of unique images, free to use with no restrictions, high-res downloads available. Check out the collection here, recently updated, now with over 180,000 public domain images.


HBS gives us HBX

Harvard Business School is wrestling with an interesting problem: how to enter the world of online education without undermining its own program. Rejecting traditional online (wow, did I just put those two words together?) university programs or MOOCs, HBS is launching HBX this month, attempting to offer something unique in the crowded world of online education. The NY Times covers the story here.

For those of us who learn and teach online, it will be interesting to watch and see if HBX offers something new, or just another grab for its share of the marketplace. In any case, it’s fascinating to see a business school attempt to practice what it preaches.