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Are you going to answer that call (to adventure)? Seeking the Epic Win Face.

This author has quite a thesis: Want to save the world? Play video games:

This is link to her TED talk:

Her thesis, that in the game world, we achieve, we overcome, we are better than our “real” selves, is a premise that may take me weeks to untangle. However you may understand, validate, approach, appreciate, endorse, discredit, repudiate, or just laugh at her findings and beliefs, (anecdotal, personal, or data-based), you must admit, this is defining a collective borg of the population. They/we do learn differently, they/we do problem solve with different pathways than perhaps they/we are used to.

Consider: I heard this story on the radio driving to work on Monday morning. Admittedly, was awake, but not in a place to write down much information. Her name and the story flew by so fast, that all I could do was remember to make a mental note of it, that it would be something interesting to listen to later.

When I had time, I went to the local radio station’s website, used every search word I could – nada. It linked me to NPR, again, all the search words, time of day, everything – nothing. I have had frustrating issues with NPR’s search engine before; I would say it’s user error, but I know how to find information. (Turns out it wasn’t an NPR program, but the local radio station that played it should have turned it up.)

Couldn’t find it anywhere.

So, I went old school on it. I called the radio station.

And having been so trained, so institutionalized, that when a real person answered the phone saying it was the business line, I immediately thought I should apologize and try another number. The kind woman said she could probably help — I told her my dilemma, gave her my name and phone number, and she said she would do some research, and give me a call back.

She did.

A human called me back. With information.

Why I find this astonishing I am not sure. We all need epic wins, real world and virtual world. How do we bridge the two so we are not working for the virtual world?

I have a lot more to think and say about this. But I am going to see some real faces here soon, so better get my game face on.

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How cool is this?

Several months ago, we watched the short film, Descendants, on Vimeo. My classes watched this last year as well. This little film possesses a rich display of symbolism, inference, and deep meaning. This year, again inspired, I wrote some comments for the filmmakers. On Saturday, I received this response:

Sent: Saturday, February 5, 2011 9:28:02 AM
Subject: Heiko van der Scherm sent you a message on Vimeo!

Hi K. Love!

Heiko van der Scherm just sent you a message on Vimeo:

“Hello Mr./Mrs. K.Love,
thanks a lot for your comment on my film “Descendants”. I rarely find a person who dicovers everything that is hidden in this short. It took about 9 Months of work and over 40 Drafts to finish this 6 page script to put all of those subtle hints into it. So i appechiate very much if there is a person who digs deeper and deeper and even shares it with students. If my small film could contribute something then i am very honored.

feel free to contact me anytime. my email is: (deleted)
all the best

Thank you, Heiko. The honor is mine! (Squee!)

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Taking son to school: How’d your grades end up? (Yes, I am that “bad” parent who has kind of put a kabash on checking up on Skyward like some monitoring Terminator checking for signs of human life within the grade book.)

He reports grades. They are more than satisfactory.

I consider this child of mine. Nature? Nurture? I don’t know. I know he is driven, like his father. He is artistic, like both of us. He looks a lot like his father, but with a strong influence of my good looking maternal side (sorry Dad, you are very handsome, but those Irish genes are pretty cute). He has big plans.

While I’m doing the semester grades, I look at the data and see so much more than numbers. I see where a child was suspended for fighting. I see an uncharged laptop, or one left at home (repeatedly). I see worry about parents’ health and financial issues. I see true intelligence but lack of intrinsic motivation. I see struggling learners who want to know more, do more, but get fuzzy about the details, or struggle to simply focus for five minutes because of genuine ADHD or some other masked learning obstacle. I even see drug use and gang activity. Yup. All that is there in the data.

I don’t have all the answers. And that is, well, unnerving. Analyzing this “data” is daunting.

But I will see over the hill to the other side, and ask you all again, my young charges, “what is it you want to do with your one wild and precious life (Mary Oliver), and moreover: how can I help you?”