프로모션 188bet 바카라_제안 카카오벳 사이트_무료 등록 복불복 룰렛 만들기 https://www.google.com//267 a journal of American culture (or lack thereof) Thu, 24 Jan 2019 22:17:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.16 No PARCC, no problem–if we get creative https://www.google.com//267/2019/01/24/no-parcc-no-problem/ /267/2019/01/24/no-parcc-no-problem/#comments Thu, 24 Jan 2019 22:17:21 +0000 /267/?p=23960 virtual children by Scott Warnock
At the very end of 2018, a New Jersey appeals court struck down the use of the PARCC test (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) as a graduation requirement for public high school students. That’s great news for the many people, including me, frustrated by the excesses of standardized testing. However, even […]]]>
educationvirtual children by Scott Warnock

At the very end of 2018, a New Jersey appeals court struck down the use of the PARCC test (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) as a graduation requirement for public high school students. That’s great news for the many people, including me, frustrated by the excesses of standardized testing.

However, even among some otherwise happy with the decision, there has been contemplation and a little hand-wringing, some of it in line with, “Okay, but now what?” The gist of many of these sentiments was perhaps expressed by N.J. Senator Teresa Ruiz, chair of the Senate Education Committee, who said, “I don’t care what we call it or who the vendor is; we need a benchmark.”

To me, there’s no reason the “now what?” has to involve high-stakes standardized testing or in fact any kind of unified benchmark. I believe it’s only a lack of creativity that has led us to that thinking in the first place.

Public schools do not have to be subjected to unimaginative, cookie-cutter standardized tests to find out/reveal if they are doing their job. Consider how many other entities/institutions in our culture are subjected to the kind of battering ram of assessment that schools are.

Why can’t elementary-high school education oversight bodies get serious about assessment by developing holistic methods of actually getting to know what a school is and does. Surprisingly, higher ed and some private schools already have this kind of structure: It’s called accreditation. On a rolling basis, institutions get a visit from an accreditation team. That team digs into many different aspects of the institution. It looks at data. It talks to people. It walks the campus.

I was on an accreditation team for a university, and I was impressed at the level of detail, care, and thought that went into the visit, both on site and before.

This is a short article, and I don’t pretend to know all the numbers. But I do know big money is spent on testing. How could that investment be transferred to a structure of evaluative teams, expert panels if you will, that would visit schools? These teams, comprised of people with a range of expertise, would be provided access to data.?The team could look at school documents and artifacts. The team could also, importantly, talk,?in focus groups or interviews, to district stakeholders, from administrators to teachers to parents to students to alumni.

They could observe classrooms.

The result could be an easily digestible,?publicly accessible report.

Interestingly, many schools probably wouldn’t need this kind of evaluation. For many schools, stakeholders are happy. Support from the community, both in presence and money, is already there. Some number of schools wouldn’t need these detailed visits as regularly.

Why couldn’t these team visit focus on schools that aren’t in ideal circumstances? A big difference from college accreditation is that part of the process would be making strong, evidence-based recommendations that these schools need more money. So everyone could be incentivized to work together to provide a transparent, formative visit.

Testing, by the way, could still be part of these processes. Schools that are doing fine could conduct standardized tests as one simplified way of indicating they’re doing their job, kind of like it’s no surprise when big chunks of kids from well-supported schools with highly-educated demographics do well on the SATs.

But schools whose tests only tell one part of the story would have a much better opportunity to share their narrative.

It’s important that we shake ourselves free from the illusion that we need some kind of national educational benchmark, not to mention one that can be represented by a test. Instead, why couldn’t a team visit-type system help perform this assessment work to provide a more in-depth look at how your school is performing?

Again, it is worth re-iterating that many schools would not need a regular visit. Even a look at alumni–I believe a terribly overlooked component of school performance at all levels–might help determine that the school is doing just fine.

Why can’t we explore a team-based, mixed qualitative and quantitative approach to educational effectiveness? There are logistical obstacles, but to address them, we first have to abandon the darn-near religion of standardized testing, one driven by the faith that those rows of little bubbles tell us how we’re doing.

]]>
/267/2019/01/24/no-parcc-no-problem/feed/ 1
Stupid for holiday music https://www.google.com//267/2018/12/19/stupid-for-holiday-music/ /267/2018/12/19/stupid-for-holiday-music/#comments Wed, 19 Dec 2018 21:16:35 +0000 /267/?p=23950
I stumbled across something last year and tucked it away: Studies show Christmas songs can be bad for your stress and mental state. With all due respect to those for whom the holidays are tough, ’cause I’ve been through own tough noggin’ times, I ain’t letting any of it get me down. In fact, I’m […]]]>
virtual children by Scott Warnock

I stumbled across something last year and tucked it away: Studies show Christmas songs can be bad for your stress and mental state.

With all due respect to those for whom the holidays are tough, ’cause I’ve been through own tough noggin’ times, I ain’t letting any of it get me down. In fact, I’m stupid for holiday music.

That might mean that I’m not out there doing the greatest job around Christmas, because part of the reason people are inundated with holiday songs is because they spend so much time in malls and stores. Me, I tend to start that process called “shopping” late. In my salad days, I would spend eight hours in a mall bar three days before Christmas with my buddy before going out and buying extravagant gifts–sometimes the real surprise of Christmas was seeing the what I had bought! Now, I loaf around the Barnes & Noble coffee shoppe drinking sugary beverages and eating brownies before hitting the stacks. In some cases, we don’t so much grow up as divert our immaturity.

(But forgive my negligence, my not taking it all seriously enough. Remember–remember!my birthday is only a few days before Christmas, the 21st, in case you are counting, which you’re probably not.)

The holidays seem to work out each year. My family spends time with great people. People give and get gifts. And every fourth year, my daughter presents us with the Christmas miracle of relative satisfaction.

In the background, songs are spinning. If you’re one of those who are worn or stressed by holiday songs, allow me to suggest a few you may not have heard. If that doesn’t work, I’ll pitch hard for a few of our household favorites.

Looking for something new? Have you ever heard Eve 6’s rocker “The First Noel/I Like Christmas“? I play this in front of people and watch for the glimmer of joy, like Ralphie in A Christmas Story believing his teacher will love his essay. As he was, I’m often disappointed.

Okay, this one comes and goes on the old Interweb, so click quickly, but if you like both Zeppelin and Christmas, you’ll be happy about “Sled Zeppelin”: “D’Yer Mak’er” re-written as a Santa tune!

Need something new to make your holiday happy? How about this one?: “Merry Christmas” by Wesley Willis. Now, maybe you’ve heard “Dominick the Donkey,” but pair it with the video: Look how much fun those guys are having!–almost as much as Leon Redbone and Dr. John has in their “Frosty the Snowman.”

Just in case you just think I’m all spoof and rock–sprock?–check out “The Holly and the Ivy” by Tonus Peregrinus from Naxos Book of Carols.

Not convinced? Maybe my glee over some old standards will infect you. First, I don’t care how many times I hear it in December: the Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo” amazes me.

How can I not feel goodwill while listening to The Royal Guardsmen’s “Snoopy vs. The Red Baron“? When the Baron cries out, “Merry Christmas, my friend!”–that’s not a tear, it’s just my pine tree allergy. How can’t Thurl Ravenscroft’s belting out how the Grinch’s “brain is full of spiders” give you holiday tingleys?

We have several Christmas song CDs. I’m not going to wade into the debate about?“Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” I will note that I’m way ahead of the current debaters. Years ago I watched two talented eighth-graders perform this at a school concert and thought, “Wow, this is actually kind of a creepy song.” Still, the Dean Martin version (with some mystery singer) is oft played in our kitchen.

Along with Martin are Mahalia Jackson’s “O Holy Night,” Tony Bennett’s “My Favorite Things,” Eartha Kitt’s “Santa Baby,” and Gene Autry’s “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

My all-time #1 Christmas song is Burl Ives’ “Holly Jolly Christmas.” I love this one so much that it has even crept into my top 100 all-time songs, nestled amongst Zeppelin and Public Enemy.

Part of my holiday song success formula is full immersion. I just keep going until indeed, I can’t take it anymore–but at that point we’re heading into January. Then Leon Redbone and co. are tucked away for another year, and I’m all the more satisfied for it.

]]>
/267/2018/12/19/stupid-for-holiday-music/feed/ 1
Things we coulda, shoulda done https://www.google.com//267/2018/12/04/things-we-coulda-shoulda-done/ /267/2018/12/04/things-we-coulda-shoulda-done/#comments Tue, 04 Dec 2018 21:31:13 +0000 /267/?p=23939 virtual children by Scott Warnock
I was watching the Vikings-Patriots game Sunday, and the announcers were talking (I mean, they’re always talking) about Viking Sheldon Richardson. Unlike most announcer blather, this ended up being an interesting story about a player who had gone through some self-imposed rough times to be where he is today. In a Minneapolis Star Tribune piece, […]]]>
sportsvirtual children by Scott Warnock

I was watching the Vikings-Patriots game Sunday, and the announcers were talking (I mean, they’re always talking) about Viking Sheldon Richardson. Unlike most announcer blather, this ended up being an interesting story about a player who had gone through some self-imposed rough times to be where he is today. In a Minneapolis Star Tribune piece, Richardson discussed what he would say to his younger self:

So, what would 28-year-old Sheldon say to 24-year-old Sheldon if he could?

¡°I¡¯d punch him in the back of the head,¡± Richardson said. ¡°For real. Just wake up, kid. Life is bigger than you and your feelings. Honestly, I brought all of this on myself.¡±

The punch in the back of the head is just one version of how we wish we could alert/awaken our younger selves, but it spurred an odd mental connection for me.

My son Nate, my high school senior, had a great soccer career, and right now we’re enjoying him receiving some nice post-season honors. My wife, who is kind of the PR agent in our house, puts news of this kind on social media.

Of course, these posts elicit comments from friends, both online and face-to-face. Some of these so-called friends stretch way back into my history. A main theme with many of their messages, which I suppose is consistent with this kind of online discourse, is saying “congrats” to the kid while voicing surprise considering the parents’ inabilities in these areas of acclaim.

In our case, a few, ahem, well-meaning folks have been pointing out dad’s severely limited life experiences in soccer.

Now, to these old, old friends, let’s be fair to me: I’ve put in a decade and a half of soccer coaching at this point, so I am getting there in terms of my knowledge of the game. (I’ve conceded, though some things; for one, I’ll never be able to kick a ball well; every time I try, I risk grave injury.)

But the critics are correct: Growing up, I didn’t play soccer, didn’t watch soccer, and certainly didn’t cultivate an appreciation of the game, despite the fact that in the neighborhood we played everything else, from Ultimate (we called it Frisbee Football) to softball to street hockey. In fact, strangely, kids seemed to play everything but soccer!

When I reached the organized arenas of high school, it was all football and wrestling.

Life then handed me not one, not two, but three soccer players. My boys have never stepped foot on the gridiron, won’t watch the sport, and can’t even be motivated/guilted to show up on Thanksgiving morning for the annual neighborhood game (at some point it’ll just be weird that I keep showing up without them).

When I whine about it watching the game with old Dad, they ignore me and go in the other room and play FIFA.

Of course, in the scale of life regrets, this is a minor, but I was lamenting a little the other day that I never watched our high school soccer team. First off, it was populated with my friends. Second, our team was solid.

Back then, the football vs. soccer rift was alive and well. There was no way we were taking off from football practice for anything, let alone watching a soccer game. (Now, at least at our great little high school, Palmyra, the football coaches give their players time from practice to support the soccer teams, boys and girls, when they’re playing at home. That wasn’t happening in my day.) And I didn’t have enough independence of thought to stray from that oppositional routine.

But whether it was my fault or not, I wish I had gotten a head start on appreciating the game.

Since I feel human being-wise, I’m still a work in progress, I try to think of things now that I have to take on and try so some day I won’t think back and wish I knew something about them.

Opportunities lost. Soccer is a small one, considering the cost has mainly been the bemusement of old friends as to why my kids all play and had a little success. But I look at any old self, and maybe he doesn’t need a punch in the head, but I wish I could get him motivated to think outside the box of his life–and I wonder what boxes I’m in right now.

]]>
/267/2018/12/04/things-we-coulda-shoulda-done/feed/ 1
This blog has become difficult to write https://www.google.com//267/2018/11/16/this-blog-has-become-difficult-to-write/ /267/2018/11/16/this-blog-has-become-difficult-to-write/#comments Fri, 16 Nov 2018 20:00:04 +0000 /267/?p=23916
This blog has become difficult to write! In 2010, when I started, all was easy. The kids around me, including my own, did unusual and sometimes even cute things. I wrote about that stuff. Other parents, who had experienced and seen similar behaviors, laughed or empathized or commiserated. The kids were subjects, which is the […]]]>
virtual children by Scott Warnock

This blog has become difficult to write!

In 2010, when I started, all was easy. The kids around me, including my own, did unusual and sometimes even cute things. I wrote about that stuff. Other parents, who had experienced and seen similar behaviors, laughed or empathized or commiserated.

The kids were subjects, which is the way we often treat young children: Their world was encompassed and defined by us. I could write about them and their pratfalls, because their identity was subsumed by that of their family’s.

But they move out of the subject stage quickly, don’t they? They become people. Adults, or close to it. With adult realities, glories, and problems.

More importantly, when you write about them as adults, they have their own identities as people that you can violate. They have privacy. They have pride.

Other fifth graders were unlikely readers. Now, their cohort might read these pieces. Some of the stories aren’t all that funny. Some that are funny, well, probably still shouldn’t be memorialized. What if an employer, a school, reads about it? It’s bad enough for your kid to lose an opportunity because of something they posted; what about if it’s something?you?posted?

Even though small children can be devilishly complex, additional complexity accompanies the move to adulthood. I find that it’s become increasingly difficult to find frames about the kids that are fair to them beyond the sometimes narrow dimensions of a 400-word written space.

I can’t carelessly embarrass them in front of, if not the whole world, then at least this little corner of the Interweb.

I used to be able to write about the wacky weekend pranks, because, no matter how wacky, what was the harm in talking about what a fifth-grader did? Things change when people reach adult- and then full person-hood (sometimes not in that order). Writing about your active six-year-old and putting up a picture of his calves can be cute. Posting a picture of your 15-year-old’s abs could be annoying or even creepy. Posting a plea of a pre-teen for a phone and your response?: Cute! Writing about teens stealing your booze, maybe not so much.

Somehow, and I suppose it’s part of evolution, they cease being cute?subjects. At the risk of embarrassment (for them, of course), I have to say that while my boys are becoming big, meaty guys, with burgeoning moustaches, I still look and still see the little boy in them.

When they were actual little boys, that kind of admission was easier. It’s more complex. As of now.

That’s why this blog has become so difficult to write. I wonder if it’ll soon be time to move on.

]]>
/267/2018/11/16/this-blog-has-become-difficult-to-write/feed/ 2
Really? Rain? https://www.google.com//267/2018/11/12/23923/ /267/2018/11/12/23923/#respond Tue, 13 Nov 2018 04:59:58 +0000 /267/?p=23923 politics & government
I have always thought that our votes for those who would lead our nation would come with expectations we, the people, have about how they would strive to respect the trust we place in them, through their words and their actions. Perhaps we should expect less of them? ? This occurred to me as I […]]]>
diatribespolitics & government

I have always thought that our votes for those who would lead our nation would come with expectations we, the people, have about how they would strive to respect the trust we place in them, through their words and their actions.

Perhaps we should expect less of them?

?
This occurred to me as I read of the latest ¡®Trumpesty¡¯ … apparently a scheduled visit by our President to a cemetery in France, part of an international observance of the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day and the end of World War I, was called on account of rain.
?
Really? Rain?
?
Of course, representatives of President Trump have pointed out the insurmountable obstacles that confronted them … the danger of flying him out there by helicopter, the disruption that would ensue if they drove him the 50 miles-or-so from Paris to the cemetery, blah-blah-blah.
?
I guess we should thank our lucky stars that so many others – including several leaders of other nations – were able to make it out to similar sites that day without aerial mishap, without devastating disruption to local communities.
?
A disclaimer, though … this is a particular ¡®Trumpesty¡¯ about which I – a military brat and the son of a career Marine – cannot be objective. There are countless military cemeteries around the world … but this was one –?Aisne-Marne American Cemetery –?that holds a special place in the history, the legend of the United States Marine Corps.
?
Google ¡°Battle Belleau Wood¡± and you¡¯ll see what I mean …
?
In 1918, the Washington Post¡¯s Alex Horton wrote, earlier today, ¡°A brigade of Marines joined two Army divisions in the closing months of the war and fought brutal hand-to-hand combat in the wood, occasionally contending with swirling poison gas. The Germans sent numerous waves in a failed attempt to dislodge the Marines during the battle, which lasted nearly a month.¡±
?
¡°Four days after the German withdrawal, the French 6th Army issued an order renaming Belleau Wood ¡®Bois de la Brigade de Marine.¡¯¡±
?
¡°German troops nicknamed Marines ¡®Teufel hunden ¡ª devil dogs. The name stuck. Bulldogs have become the mascot of the Corps.¡±
?
Is it me, or does their courage, their sacrifice, receive more credit from France – and even the enemy at the time, Germany – than it does today from the President of the United States? But there WERE some, this weekend, who were mindful of what took place 100 years ago, and honored those who fought in that terrible conflict.
?
(AP Photo by Francois Mori)

(AP Photo by Francois Mori)

?In his article, Horton points out that ¡°Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly visited the cemetery on Saturday ¡ª a day and a place layered with deep significance to U.S. military history.¡±
?
¡°Saturday was the Marine Corps¡¯ 243rd birthday, and the men ¡ª both Marines ¡ª walked the cemetery on the edge of Belleau Wood, which quickly became central to Marine lore after the 1918 battle.¡±
?
Thank you, gentlemen … and God bless you both!
?
Semper Fidelis!
?
]]>
/267/2018/11/12/23923/feed/ 0
Can we, should we, introduce adversity, even pain? https://www.google.com//267/2018/10/29/adversity-pain/ /267/2018/10/29/adversity-pain/#comments Mon, 29 Oct 2018 23:33:11 +0000 /267/?p=23906
Each day that I head over to my job at Drexel, I think about how I get to be around amazing, motivated students. That¡¯s one of the main benefits of the career I chose. I say that so you know that I’m on the students’ side. I respect them, and I find I’m able to […]]]>
virtual children by Scott Warnock

Each day that I head over to my job at Drexel, I think about how I get to be around amazing, motivated students. That¡¯s one of the main benefits of the career I chose.

I say that so you know that I’m on the students’ side. I respect them, and I find I’m able to avoid the, ahem, generationism that I see exhibited by some of my friends who aren’t around the 20-something set much. In other words, sure, these young kids have grown up a certain way and expect certain things, but they also have confronted bigger challenges, including financially, than most of the people my age had to deal with.

I think it’s easy for older people to pile on, but I don’t totally agree with it all. However, I do think many of them, perhaps in contrast with the experiences of their peers in other parts of the world, have been protected from significant adversity. By us, their loving parents.

For the past few summers, I have conducted a workshop at my local library about writing the college admissions essay for rising seniors.

Using prompts from the Common Application, I show these students–who, by the way, are giving up two summer nights for this endeavor–that they have multiple paths to their essay. The hero motif, that grand tale of adversity overcome, has great appeal, so many students spend their workshop time brainstorming about a personal adversity story as their way “in.”

I’m struck by the difficulty that most of them have had in defining such an event. They are aware of it too.

As I read many of these mechanically correct, tidy pieces about we-weren’t-the-best-team-but-we-won-the-big-game or at-first-I-got-a-C+-but-with-hard-work-I-got-an-A, it strikes me this is exactly how we have raised them: Not to have to want, to need, to suffer.

Sometimes, in those many dark moments that you are inevitably going to have as a parent, it makes me wonder if I¡¯ve done the right things.

I remember an experience I had many years ago as a high school wrestling coach. One of our guys had an aching shoulder. Mind you, this kid was tough as nails and went on to be one of the best wrestlers in the state. His dad was a specialist physician. Before an early-season, high-stakes match, he gave his son an injection. Our trainer expressed concern about this, and the dad simply replied: ¡°Do you want my son to be in pain?¡±

At the time, I didn¡¯t get it.

Now I think I do. Where is the line between allowing your kids to face adversity/toughing it out and suffering? If we can take the pain away, won’t we?

Yet, without adversity at a young age, how will they shape themselves as they get older? It’s a question we must ask, but it is clouded by the over-involvement many of us have had in their lives, which means we have seen their every grimace and reaction. Every social media snub. Every missed goal. Every almost grade. How do we not step in?

I was talking to some of those smart Drexel students about this topic recently, but I struggled to voice what I wanted to say. Parents don’t wish for adversity, and in most cases, we don’t plant it in our kids’ lives. In the past, we mostly didn’t need to.

But we all know they will face plenty of difficulty at some point. And if you haven’t experienced adversity, will you be ready later on? In the story of your life, what will you have to write about?

]]>
/267/2018/10/29/adversity-pain/feed/ 5
Casino Night raises $15,500 for Palmyra High School science programs https://www.google.com//267/2018/10/08/fundraiser-raises-for-phs-science-program/ /267/2018/10/08/fundraiser-raises-for-phs-science-program/#respond Mon, 08 Oct 2018 20:18:39 +0000 /267/?p=23897 virtual children by Scott Warnock
PALMYRA, NJ ¨C Science programming at Palmyra High School (PHS) will receive a $15,500 donation as a result of a Casino Night fundraiser conducted by the Palmyra High School Foundation for Educational Excellence (PHSFEE). The September 22nd event was the second annual Casino Night conducted by PHSFEE, an organization established in 2016, according to its […]]]>
educationvirtual children by Scott Warnock

PALMYRA, NJ ¨C Science programming at Palmyra High School (PHS) will receive a $15,500 donation as a result of a Casino Night fundraiser conducted by the Palmyra High School Foundation for Educational Excellence (PHSFEE).

The September 22nd event was the second annual Casino Night conducted by PHSFEE, an organization established in 2016, according to its bylaws, ¡°to create community partnerships, and to acquire and distribute funds and other resources for the purpose of¡± supporting PHS.

As it did last year,?PHSFEE worked with the PHS administration to target the fundraiser for PHS’s science department. Last year $15,000 was raised, bringing the two-year total to $30,500. The organization has also received several science-focused grants and donations, including a large piece of equipment from the University of Pennsylvania.

Casino Night was again the result of a strong volunteer effort. Casino Night Chair and PHSFEE Trustee Christine Murnane led event planning with Trustee Jody Demas. The planning included assembling an enthusiastic team of parent volunteers and a sizable group of PHS Interact and student council members to help set up on Saturday afternoon.

In addition to being a win for PHS academic programs, the night appeared to be a lot of fun. As in 2017, the company Tumbling Dice ran games of chance, well-loved barbecue restaurant Sweet Lucy¡¯s catered, and Cooper River Distillers set up a specialty drink, the PHSFEE fizz, which was a big hit. Sacred Heart again generously donated its gymnasium space.

Attendees played casino style games like blackjack, Texas hold ¡®em, roulette, and craps, and they exchanged winnings for tickets that they used to bid on about 40 creatively titled prizes and prize baskets, most of which had been donated by local individuals and businesses.

There was also a 50/50 drawing. The winner received $1,300.

The fundraiser was nearly a sellout, with almost 200 community members and supporters in attendance, including PHS superintendent Brian McBride, principal Lisa Sabo, assistant principal Jared Toscano, and athletic director Mike Papenberg. ¡°Celebrity¡± bartenders included teachers Jennifer VanZandt, Lorita Foster, and Jack Geisel. Board of education and council members from both Palmyra and Riverton attended.

PHSFEE President Scott Warnock said Casino Night has become a signature event for the community, as it ¡°gives everyone a fun, focused way to donate their time and energy to PHS.¡±

PHSFEE will donate the funds at an upcoming public meeting of the Palmyra board of education.

]]>
/267/2018/10/08/fundraiser-raises-for-phs-science-program/feed/ 0
Hacking the educational narrative with good old D&D https://www.google.com//267/2018/09/19/hacking-education-dd/ /267/2018/09/19/hacking-education-dd/#comments Wed, 19 Sep 2018 16:05:35 +0000 /267/?p=23877 virtual children by Scott Warnock
Well, it¡¯s about time. We¡¯re playing some D&D. In school. For the good of all. Anybody who knows anything knows D&D is the greatest game that ever was. I certainly know this and expressed that here five years ago. Forget it, you chess lovers and Scrabble nuts and FortNite fans: D&D rules. In terms of […]]]>
educationvirtual children by Scott Warnock

Well, it¡¯s about time. We¡¯re playing some D&D. In school. For the good of all.

Anybody who knows anything knows D&D is the greatest game that ever was. I certainly know this and expressed that here five years ago. Forget it, you chess lovers and Scrabble nuts and FortNite fans: D&D rules.

In terms of learning, D&D basically does it all, and, as a Mindshift story reports, teachers are using D&D (and other role-playing games) as “tools for teaching, learning and social-emotional development. And many report that the potent alchemical elixir of role-play, learning and storytelling has, in many cases, been transformational.”

Damn right.

Of course, “we” always knew this. Who’s “we”? The scores of people I have sat at the table (or, back in the day, an old chest in my house) with since about 1979, the year my friend Pete’s mom, the inimitable Mrs. Ralston, bought me the boxed set for my birthday. Pete and I, by the way, are still at it together.

Image result for dungeons and dragons boxed set

The original boxed set.

A video accompanying the Mindshift story is quite good. It includes a distillation of the game into three fundamental elements: “Describe. Decide. Roll.” I like that, because the game really is simple. Sure, players can spend hours (or a lifetime) arguing nuances of the rules (as we often do), but as long as someone knows the rules in your group, you can play with a basic understanding of the game’s mechanics, simply following those three core elements: The Dungeon Master (DM), describes a scenario, sometimes with the table-top aids. Players decide what to do. And most of those decisions result in rolls of a bunch of dice.

The Mindshift story opens with a description of a “timid” first-year high school student who built confidence through the game. From there, the the article describes how D&D can help in “hacking the educational narrative,” drawing that idea from a D&D can “save the world” talk at SXSW EDU.

We have known this for a long time; the game can build your brain in so many ways:

Stories and narrative. The world is stories, as one of the SXSW speakers, Maria Laura Ruggiero, says. D&D helps you refine your ability to think narratively.

Reading and literacy. D&D is reading-intensive: Just look at the rule books. And to enhance their understanding of/feel for a particular campaign, players often turn to other texts. Once, in a maritime-themed adventure, for the holidays (in real life) I purchased for my player-friends fiction and nonfiction works about pirating.

Math. Probability drives the game: Characters basically improve by increasing their probability of success. It struck me that I’ve been thinking in probability for nearly 40 years — it’s hard to see the world otherwise.

Collaboration. The game forces people to work together in tremendously challenging team-building tasks that, by their nature, force players to discover and draw on various assets and strengths. A party that doesn’t have a good mix of talents is destined for the ash heap. “Escape the Room”? — D&D players have been doing that for decades.

Imagination. The video narrator says, “In most games, how you play is limited by the options the game designers give you.” I try to get this through to my boys: In most games, including video games, you are bound by the world of the game designer. In D&D, anything goes, and that narrative is often tremendously complex, “written” in multiple levels by a game designer and then the DM and then, sometimes, the players themselves, the people participating in the game. My players, properly paranoid after decades of being slaughtered in every way imaginable, will see a random villager and determine, “She’s up to no good!” They follow her. Well, while that person initially had nothing to do with the adventure, I can change that, because of the players.

There’s nothing like it. D&D has tremendous education potential, and I for one, proud DM since the late 70s, think it’s about time we’ve realized that.

 

]]>
/267/2018/09/19/hacking-education-dd/feed/ 4
3 Guys, 3 Generations, 3 Missions https://www.google.com//267/2018/09/18/3-guys-3-generations-3-missions/ /267/2018/09/18/3-guys-3-generations-3-missions/#respond Wed, 19 Sep 2018 04:59:10 +0000 /267/?p=23890 travel & foreign lands
A little bit of family, a little bit of history, and my own, personal experience of how – as Bob Dylan once observed – the times they are a¡¯changin¡¯ … I am recently returned from a trip to the nation of Cuba … just 90 miles away from the United States … but worlds away […]]]>
religion & philosophytravel & foreign lands

A little bit of family, a little bit of history, and my own, personal experience of how – as Bob Dylan once observed – the times they are a¡¯changin¡¯ … I am recently returned from a trip to the nation of Cuba … just 90 miles away from the United States … but worlds away in other respects. The relationship between our two nations has seen a lot of changes over the past 150 years-or-so … and there may be more changes ahead. I am not the first member of my family to visit this island. I have known all along of one family member who was once here … but in the weeks leading up to my mission trip, I learned of others who have visited Cuba. With my visit, there have now been four of us … and a fifth who was enroute, but never made landfall, turning around in mid-transit to return to the United States. This post focuses upon ¡°3 Guys, 3 Generations, 3 Missions¡± … imagejpeg_0 The first was one of great-grandfathers, Robert Weilenbeck. The son of German immigrants, Robert lied about his age in order to enlist in the United States Army in the 1890s, and travel to Cuba to fight in the Spanish American War. His mission was to fight. Robert had a fighting spirit, I guess … almost 20 years after that, he would re-enlist, and serve in France during World War I … and more than 20 years after THAT, he would lie about his age again, and re-enlist to serve during World War II, making it through the preliminaries, before the family found him at a training depot, and the Army sent him home with their thanks for his service. Back home, in the civilian world, Robert had a good record as an amateur and semi-pro boxer. Like I said, he had a fighting spirit. His vocation, though, was as an artist, creating stained and painted glass for churches, courthouse and so on … IMHO, one of the more interesting branches on my family tree.

The next guy, the next generation, was one of my uncles, Julius Fecht. Also descended from German immigrants, Julius traveled to Cuba more than once in the 1930s. But HIS mission was commerce, purchasing tobacco for his cigar factory back in the United States. Such factories were common back then, whether in Scranton, Pennsylvania or El Paso, Texas or anywhere in between. Most of those are gone now – cigar production i n the U.S. is different than it was back then. But the industry of cultivating tobacco, and producing hand-rolled cigars, is still thriving in Cuba … and are a popular souvenir for visitors to Cuba … Uncle Julius would be pleased.

The last guy? Me. The last generation? Now. The last mission? Faith. Over most of two weeks in September, I was part of a Christian mission team serving in Cuba. The team included members from multiple states, including pastors and elders of various Presbyterian churches, and representative of the Outreach Foundation – a Presbyterian global agency – which organized this trip. This was a short-term ¡®vision team,¡¯ with a focus upon introduction, education and connection, and a goal of discerning God¡¯s call to global engagement, and partnership development.

Over the course of those two weeks, I learned a thing-or-three … but I also had to UN-learn some things, as well. I benefited from both … and I’ll share some of that with you in the weeks ahead.

]]>
/267/2018/09/18/3-guys-3-generations-3-missions/feed/ 0
Making bad sideline behavior public https://www.google.com//267/2018/08/31/bad-sideline-behavior-made-public/ /267/2018/08/31/bad-sideline-behavior-made-public/#respond Fri, 31 Aug 2018 21:15:50 +0000 /267/?p=23868 virtual children by Scott Warnock
Summer¡¯s getting darn near over for many (as I’ve said before, though, not for me, so direct your sad thoughts elsewhere). Children will be taking to the fields again. Parents will be preparing for time on the sidelines and bleachers. For an unfortunately sizable portion of the latter group, their time will be spent¡­ yelling […]]]>
sportsvirtual children by Scott Warnock

Summer¡¯s getting darn near over for many (as I’ve said before, though, not for me, so direct your sad thoughts elsewhere). Children will be taking to the fields again. Parents will be preparing for time on the sidelines and bleachers. For an unfortunately sizable portion of the latter group, their time will be spent¡­ yelling at the officials!

Critiquing refs and umps is a long-running, pathetic national pastime. The lyrics from “Six Months Out of Every Year,” from the ’50s Broadway musical Damn Yankees, will sound familiar:

Strike three, ball four, walk a run’ll tie the score
Yer blind, Ump,
Yer blind, Ump,
Ya mus’ be out-a yer mind, Ump!

Yelling at the officials, for many, is just part of the landscape of sports, including youth sports.

But one ref had enough and started a Facebook page, as reported 3 만원 카지노and here, of videos of idiotic sideline behavior.

With videos about everything, we should have something like this. I¡¯ve long wondered why organizations didn¡¯t as regular practice film their coaches and, much like with athletes, review film and constructively and calmly break down coaching behaviors.

I¡¯ve known reasonable, kind, calm people who morph into super jerks once the whistle blows. Forget that such behavior is a terrible role model for the kids. Forget that often, the biggest yellers also know the least about the sport and get the rules wrong. Once in the throes of competition, there¡¯s no talking to these people. The stakes, in their minds, are too high!

I think putting their nonsense online for all to see may be one way to curb it.

There may be problems. Some videos may be out of context. Maybe (oh, no maybe about it) someone will sue. But the idea is great: Put an actual lens on this awful behavior.

I have long wondered just what drives this common behavior. In those musings, I’ve also wondered why I’m not a perpetrator.

After all, I¡¯m hyper-competitive. I have been known to brood over losing a family game of Scrabble or flip out over a backyard lawn dart match (which can be awfully dangerous…). I had a kind-of template email to send to my tennis opponents to apologize for my bad on-court behavior. But I do not act in these ways as a coach or fan. I suppose, for reasons I’m not fully clear about, I just hold myself up to a higher standard in those roles.

I have been involved with my kids¡¯ athletics for a long time, coaching them mostly in soccer and wrestling. I was thinking about our great years of soccer recently and was struck by how few specifics I remembered: Like most of my relationship to the past, I had big-picture emotional recall, but the details were a blur.

I say this because, in the end, attending or coaching your kids¡¯ games should be an in-the-moment affair, nothing? more. Why act like an idiot when you won¡¯t remember what were even screaming about?

To me, this remains one of those enigmatic aspects of human behavior. I look at people and think, “Why don’t you just try shutting the hell up?! Really, just give it a shot!” I don’t know if they are trying to impress their friends (or friends’ spouses…) or want to seem like some kind of PhD of sport or just act tough.

I’m glad this ref started this site. While it won’t cure everyone, it’s a start. After all, kids learn about sports by competing in youth leagues. Maybe adults can learn about being coaches and spectators in the same environment.

]]>
/267/2018/08/31/bad-sideline-behavior-made-public/feed/ 0