Archive for November, 2010

Approaching Thanksgiving Break

Posted: November 19, 2010 in Uncategorized

I don’t really have too much to say. I just wanted to get that Rihanna video off the top of my blog. I will reiterate that giving students the opportunity to select their own topic to research often leads to them becoming more connected to the topic and interested in the assignment.

I have a girl who is off-the-wall goofy, and when it was her turn to give her presentation on teenage pregnancy, she became serious and was intent on getting her message across. She had a child as a teen, and her overall message to the group was not to do that. I found that teenage pregnancy was the most popular topic. I teach a lot of students who are single parents or who had children at a young age, so they really relate to the topic.

One of my students said today, “This is my most fun class.” I’ve had students from prior semesters tell me that as well. I incorporate a lot of hands-on and group activities, so my groups really get to know each other. We get things done, so I don’t think “fun” equals unproductive, just interactive.

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So, if anyone would like to watch Rihanna’s video for her song “What’s my Name,” here it is:

I know there are a lot of videos circulating on YouTube and elsewhere that are just as trashy, but I’d think that a woman who had experienced domestic violence would do more to prevent the same types of altercations from happening to others.

Her video almost seems to be promoting society’s problems, such as promiscuity, rising teenage pregnancy, domestic violence, instant gratification, underage drinking, substance abuse, etc. This urban pop scene that has become so popular has more creative power to influence young listeners than teachers have. Teachers have to follow some form or script, agenda, or curriculum. Musicians are really free to express themselves in whichever way they choose. Maybe Rihanna will mature a little and make better use of her talents. I mean, the oh na na lyrics are catchy and the song itself isn’t the most horrible creation ever, but for me, the video ruined it.

Education!

Posted: November 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

My last two blogs have been me venting about my personal life. I am still in the education reform game, and I’m still learning a lot about teaching reading comprehension.

I’m teaching four developmental college reading courses this semester. Each class also has an hour lab that students must attend. One lab meets twice a week and the others meet once.

We’ve been discussing different themes this semester, including homelessness, poverty, and how positive attitude and ambition can make a difference in achieving goals.

For a new twist, since we’re at the point in the semester where students get tired of the repetition of college and begin to lose motivation, I switched our lessons up this past week and had them create Power Points during lab time about a topic of their choice (such as teenage pregnancy, drug abuse, alcoholism, mental illness, etc.) The students created some amazingly thoughtful Power Points and then presented them to the class. Allowing the students to choose a topic that meant something to them really enabled them to represent their topic.

We had students explaining the seriousness of OCD, people explaining the difference between Bloods and Crips, students defending marijuana, people explaining the effects of drug abuse on young children, etc. I thought we had a great week, and the students practiced researching for information, creating and presenting information for an audience, and listening (some needed to be reminded to be respectful) to others points of view.

Sometimes allowing students to present information and viewpoints is more powerful than having the instructor lecture on about whatever.

When you read this, you can play the following song. “I Can Hear You Louder than Ever.”

Do I have social anxiety?

No way!

Of course I do. The question’s not even debatable.

When I go through life events such as I’m dealing with now

(And which I’ve been through before…My life’s on repeat)

People become vocal and say things such as

She probably has social anxiety

And should seek therapy

I just wanted to say a quick thanks

For the suggestions

But right now I’m just not interested in therapy

Why don’t you go to therapy for being overweight?

Or for your nicotine addiction?

Probably for the same reason I don’t go to therapy

Whatever that is

Sometimes an individual’s problems are not easily solved

I mean

Anyone smoking would quit if he or she knew how

Just as

Anyone would rise out of poverty

If he or she knew the trick

I don’t know the trick

To ridding myself of anxiety

And I’m only willing to be medicated for physical ailments

Like the noncancerous tumor that was growing

On my pituitary gland, and might still be there

Even though my insurance denies claims and calls my issues

“preexisting conditions”

I’m just saying

I already know I have problems

And if I have to grow old alone because of them

Then I guess that sucks

But I just wanted to write this

Because people have been telling me since middle school

About my problems

And I’m aware of them

So thanks for pointing out the obvious

I don’t think therapy would have saved

Anything I’ve lost up to this point

I’ve made my own strides

And I’m content with that progress

Even if many aspects of my life still suffer

My joking/not joking singles ad

Posted: November 10, 2010 in Uncategorized

So I’ve been single for two days. I haven’t been single since I just turned 16, so I have to have some fun with it. Here’s my sarcastic yet true singles ad that I just created (created for my amusement only, and for your amusement):

I’m 5’6 or 5’7, 128 pounds

I’m a bit abnormal in regards to female habits

For example

I’ve never had anything pierced, including my ears

Don’t paint my fingernails, or toenails

I own one dress, which I wore once

The way I do my hair is I brush it and dry it

To change things up I might part it slightly more to the left or right

I do like having a tan, but only a real one

I rarely talk on the phone

And I don’t really do drama

Shopping often makes me angry

I can juggle at a mid-beginner level

But I don’t dance, at all

Most of the time I’m content to be by myself

I didn’t go to my high school prom and I never regretted it

I have no desire for an audience at a wedding

Honestly I don’t really desire a wedding at all, and I never have

I don’t think I believe in destiny

And I know that anyone I know can one day become a stranger

Maybe with the exception of family

Oh and I love bowling