Thinking Citizen Blog — Seven Best Ideas — Please Share!

Thinking Citizen Blog — Friday is Education and Education Policy Day

Today’s Topic — Seven Best Ideas — Please Share!

Today, a slightly different spin on a recurrent theme: focus, focus, focus. What are the seven best ideas you ever had in your life related to teaching at any level — from cooking, manners, sports, art, music, math, science, writing, whatever? Try to be as practical and specific as possible. My submission follows. Apologies for the redundancy. Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.

TOP THREE: the seven thank you day, the seven joys week, the seven issues week

1. The Seven Thank You Day — day break, sun rise, mid morning, noon, mid-afternoon, sun set, nightfall.

2. The Seven Joys Week — something to look forward to every day. Think raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens.

3. The Seven Issues Week — become more of a thinking citizen every day. Without a basic mastery of all major issues, how can you rationally prioritize them? You can’t. Without the ability to state a strong case for all three sides (left, right, center) marshaling principles, facts, and solutions, how can you rationally decide between them? You can’t. How long does it take to be able to do so? About ten years of rigorous practice of an hour plus per day. Just like competence at tennis or piano. Best time to start? Today.

NEXT TWO — the Journal and (not or) the Album

1. The Journal: reading without writing is like eating without digesting. Ditto for living.

2. The Album: if the average picture is worth a thousand words, the really good ones are worth a billion. Identify the ones at the end of the right tail of the bell curve. Paste them into an album. Think about them. Share them.

NEXT TWO — the Math Habit and Humanity’s playlist

1. The Math Habit: all of life is applied math. If you haven’t found the math yet, you just don’t get it. Sports? applied math. Music? applied math. Art? applied math. Get up and count, calculate, formulate. Do that two column proof and draw that diagram. Count the petals on that rose. And the peony. And the iris. Do the math every day. Morning, noon, and night. Have you calculated your santa/grinch ratio for the day? Get with the program. Or would you rather call it the smile/frown ratio? Or just s/f for short?

2. Humanity’s Playlist — what rational human being would not want the super power of being able to tear down all cultural barriers between them and anyone they meet anywhere on the planet in 15 seconds? What rational parent would not want their children to have this super power? What rational grandparent would not want their grandchildren to have that super power? What are you waiting for?

FINAL WORD

If it’s not worth repeating, is it worth saying?

THE LAST FOUR YEARS OF POSTS ORGANIZED THEMATICALLY ARE AVAILABLE HERE:

PDF with headlines — Google Drive

ATTACHMENTS BELOW:

#1 A graphic guide to justice (9 metaphors on one page).

#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, 11/17/20

YOUR TURN

Please share the coolest thing you learned in the last week related to education or education policy. Or the coolest thought however half-baked you had. Or the coolest, most important thing you learned in your life related to education or education policy that the rest of us may have missed. Or just some random education-related fact that blew you away.

This is your chance to make some one’s day. Or to cement in your own mind something that you might otherwise forget. Or to think more deeply than otherwise about something that is dear to your heart.

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