Archive for September, 2006

Clean, Party, Party, Sleep

September 18th, 2006 1 comment

That was my Saturday.

Clean the house, while Ang ate bon-bons had girls night out worked her butt off at the consignment fair, then deliver Brenna to her friend’s party.

After I picked her up, it was time to get ready to host HER (Brenna’s) birthday party. Okay, so Ang did more of the actual partying, but only because I don’t do the glam-o-ram like her and her bestestest friend Nat does (thanks Nat for coming over and bothering me helping Ang out, your help got us over the hump.

Then the gels settled down to watch Aquamarine (think Little Mermaid in a Disney Channel High School Musical mode – without all the singing, ‘natch), I dozed in the armchair.

Sunday was more like this: Sunday School, Babysit, Meeting, Birthday, Meeting, Meeting, Party.

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Survivor: My Friend Flicka lost my Chickas

September 14th, 2006 Comments off

This year on Survivor, we play the race card, and set up teams based on race.  Nothing to see here, This is not the controversy you’re looking for.
The Asians (Puka), the Latinos (Aitu), the African-Americans (Hiki) and the Caucasians (Raro)

Puka (asians) have three dudes and two chicks, and one of the dudes is an older Vietnamese refugee.

All the rest have three chicks and two dudes… Wonder if that’ll be a factor… nah.. nebber mine.

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September 14th, 2006 Comments off

I installed Windows Vista RC1 on my laptop. (Don’t worrrrrry, Ubuntu Edgy Eft is still on there… urm… somewhere… )
By Jove, it works pretty good.

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Wanted: Venture Capitalist

September 13th, 2006 5 comments

From this mornings IM:

Matt : but what is our business idea?
Jon : make millions.. duh!
Matt : well, okay, if you want to set your sights that low

We are now accepting VC recommendations/applications.

Act quickly, with a business plan like that, I expect the phone to start ringing…


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Perfect Harmony

September 11th, 2006 Comments off

I’d like to by Kabul a Coke

UPDATE:  Never forget

(hat-tip: this old thing )

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September 8th, 2006 2 comments

Another topic drilled into me this month is the 90-20-8 (URI) rule.

This states that Adults can:

  • Listen with Understanding for 90 minutes
  • Listen with Retention for 20 minutes
  • Desire Involvement every 8 minutes

That last bullet, I have a hard time remembering how it is stated. But the rules are common in lots of different places, the timing of recess at school, movies are generally ~90 minutes, if longer the audience grows restless (kids movies are always around 90 minutes). Television shows rarely go more than 20 minutes without a commercial, probably if we put a timer on it, a scene in television will rarely go past 8 minutes.

So this is becoming a mantra, especially when planning for a class, or a training ‘event’ (eLearning, Webinar, etc). Then I’m reading around today, and find this article at 43Folders.

Ultradian Rhythms & the 20-minute Break

Which talks about the need for a 20 minute break around every 90 minutes to help ‘balance the ultradians’ or some such.  It quote this guy as saying basically, ‘Heed the 90 minute rule or risk getting sick.’   I’m not going all crystal-newagey on y’all, but there might be some substance to that.  I know that the 90-20-8 rule works in the classroom.  May as well try to link it to my work habits.  Who knows I may become productive.

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Pike’s First Law – Adults are babies with big bodies.

September 8th, 2006 1 comment

baby hueyBob Pike has a list of laws as they relate to adult learning and training.

His first law, and the topic of this post is:

Adults are babies with big bodies.

When this was discussed the past two-days it took a different tact than the way I’ve normally had it explained. My peers in the classroom tossed out that babies:

  • like to whine
  • want to be fed
  • need naps
  • selfish
  • feelings are easily hurt
  • hold grudges

Which, oddly, are all very true. Something that as classroom leaders we DO need to take into account and plan for those more physical and emotional parts of a classroom experience. I think that focusing on those attributes is to the trainers detriment, and we really should be focusing on the ways Adults are like Babies when in comes to the learning process.

Think (or observe if you have children) about how do children, babies learn? How does that child that starts out needing everything done for them at hour one progress to a fully functional toddler in three years. How they move from a toddler to a school attending child in three more years, and the advances … no … LEAPS they make in what they are able to do physically, cognitively and socially.

Children, babies, experience learning. They learn that if they cry their needs will be met (fed, changed, cuddled). The experience that food that was usually liquid can also be solid, and need to be chewed with these new hard ivory things that were a pain at first but ideally suited to this chop up the Cherrios task now before them. They experience that mobility is a whole body activity, that can become more efficient using these dangly things that can make the slither, crawl, cruise and walk. They find out that this round hole in their face that usually is only good from bringing things INTO their body, is also suited for communicating with other people that look like they do, as well as for terrorizing the more furry things that sometimes live around them. No one takes a baby and sits them up and just talks to them.

Now this gaping maw where your crying noise comes from is called a mouth, and is composed of tissues and muscles that you can manipulate through the power of your thoughts to:

  • drink milk
  • chew food
  • spit juice
  • jabber jobber
  • taste pocket lint

The truth, that shouldn’t be shocking, is that the way babies learn is also the way adults learn. Adults have a larger toolkit for learning, we can listen for longer periods of time, we can take disparate peices of information and pull them together into a cognitive theory, we can express ourselves in speech, or song. We can control our bodies better, hide our emotions better, and lots of other things.

Somewhere, though, we as adults have been trained that the learning process as an adult is not the same as that of a child. That model is what participant-centered thraining is bucking against. The thought that adults learn differently than children is frankly ‘poppycock’. I state, emphatically, that we learn the exact same way, and to remove the ‘experience’ from the learning process is crippling the learning process. Yes, as adults we can learn differently than a two-year old. That doesn’t mean that we should learn differently than a two-year old.

The question we should ask as educators/facilitators/leaders is how can we create courses, classrooms and lessons that tap into the experieces a student would need to learn the content we’d like to teach. We need to switch around our priorites to enhance the learning not expand the teaching.

With my children, when they started becoming mobile, I took them by the hands, and let them walk by moving their feet. As they grew more confident, they might let loose a hand, and experiment with using the free hand as balance. Then one day, out of the blue, they’d realize that having one hand on a wall or peice of furniture was a lot like having one hand held by Daddy. Then they’d try out the whole balance thing by pushing away from one wall and heading to another arms flailing as they awkwardly took those tenative first steps. They’d most likely fall, but when they got back up, they do it again, with a daffy grin on their face as they noticed me watching them. They learned by doing, they learned by failing, and they had a fun time doing it.

Blogitus Interruptus

September 8th, 2006 1 comment

Sorry for the lack of blaaawgifying the past couple of days, I was in a Bob Pike Bootcamp for work the last two days, and was totally wiped by the time I got back home.

But, you might say, didn’t you just get done doing that whole Bob Pike thing.

Uh yuop! you are correct, sir.

The powers that be would like our whole department to be certifiable certified Participant-Centered Facilitators (or some such series of initials), and the pre-requisite requirement for such a certification is to take the Bootcamp, have advanced training, take an assessment and have a classroom facilitation observed and assessed.  I’m doing the steps in a cha-cha-cha fashion, in that the advanced training took place before the bootcamp.

So the last two days were like remedial training for the event that took place two-weeks ago (oh and I took the test already too, scored 90% on it too!)

The training was repetitious for me, but fresh, new and exciting for the other participants, which made it fun for me.  Which is really one of the benefits of a participant-centered (PC) approach.  In a PC classroom, an experienced practitioner of the topic is treated as a resource, instead of a member of the audience.  The acolytes can tap into the experience and knowledge of the more experienced.  It works the other way as well, the vim and vigor of the fresh young faces, refreshes the tired old soldiers into rethinking/reshaping the worn-in pathways of the veteran.

Think about that approach, next time your involved in a class that expects you to sit in your seat and listen, until the time for questions come.  Or wants to by-pass your experiences in order to trot out the speakers talking points.  The PC approach is more than capable of providing a structure for getting those points across, it does so in a manner that honors the participant, and respects his experience.

I’ll have more to share in a few more posts, perhaps giving y’all a way to put participant-centered into your vocabulary, and change the way you share your knowledge with others.

Long Weekend… and Happy Birthday…

September 5th, 2006 1 comment

Well since Saturday, we’ve done the church thing (taught SS, brought breakfast) had lunch with friends.

I spent Sunday evening picking my Fantasy Football team:

Lost Numbers Helmet

The Lost Numbers

  • QB – Carson Plamer
  • RB – Brain Westbrook
  • RB – Willis McGahee
  • WR – Hines Ward
  • WR – Donald Driver
  • WR – Rod Smith
  • K – David Akers
  • DEF – Seattle
  • B QB – Drew Beldsoe
  • B WR – Lav. Coles
  • B RB – Kevin Barlow
  • B WR – Nate Burelson

Then the rain came, so Monday wasn’t the last day at the pool, but rather hide out at home while the Woman shopped. Patched up Danny’s leg where his bike bit him, and then went to bed early come Monday night.

See there wasn’t much blogability there… but Matt… (or really Debbi) has a frightening story to tell.

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September 2nd, 2006 2 comments

A couple of things on Digg

Windows Vista Versus XP Pricing


Ubuntu Edgy Eft Knot 2 Is Out

While everyone else has to decide whether or not to shell out their cash to Microsoft (which, I’m not knocking, from many aspects the decision to go Microsoft is a good decision) I’ll be hapily using Ubuntu (free!)  (DISCLAIMER: Edgy is the development version, it won’t be ready for prime time until October)

One of the things I like about Ubuntu, is that it is constantly under development.  I started using Dapper (the current stable/supported version) when it was in development, and I just recently shifted over to Edgy (a couple of random commands, and the operating system upgraded itself) and I continue to get new packages daily as the developers work on the system.  I ‘contribute’ back to the community by submitting bug-reports and participating in the Community Forums.

As to the discussion in the XP pricing document has it compared to the pricing for OSX.   I’ll just remind people that Ubuntu can be run on both Apple architectures, and has even added Sun’s Sparc to its line of compatible processors.

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