jueves, 24 de mayo de 2012

Wk4 Classmate Comment: Faith Olarsch

Faith's Original Post;

MAC week 4 blog 1 reading: The Art of Possibility byBenjamin Zander and Rosamund Stone Zander

Used with permission from: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1387982
What if wewere the circuit board of our life?

Perhaps this book is all about being Zen.  I particularly like the portion of Zen that explores the lack of people living in a bottle.  I find that at times I am guilty of the desire to be unaffected by the outside world.  I like isolation, which is witnessed by the National Forest surroundings of my home.  I find that too many people clutter my thoughts too easily.  Yet despite this isolation we affect each other, and we are part responsible no matter which direction the outcome.  I would like to be more efficient in the game of chess, but the concept of being the board seems harder for me to grasp.  I understand that actions and reactions occur, and most of the time I do not assign blame.  There are times though, when feeling low, that I am bound by insufficient thought and overwhelmed with negativity. When those times occur action is required to re-establish a positive mode of thinking and being. 

My Comments;

Hi Faith;
Chess is a game about strategy. In fact, it's the ultimate strategy game. Ben and Roz used the chess board analogy as a way to explain that each of us have our own board and we control "our" board. The will be situations that you cannot avoid, for example Bishop takes Pawn. Bishop moves different from Pawn in the game. it has a better range compared to Pawn. There will be days where "your" pawn could be overwhelmed by the "bishop" (a problem). It is how you move the situation to your favor. How can a pawn can take over the bishop with the right move. That's the reason why chess games are so lengthy. Chess players don't look at one movement, they look at the whole board, all possible moves that can affect the outcome of the game.

In Internal Martial Arts, such as Bagua, Taijiquan and Xingyiquan we train our body to use as a whole, not as a individual entity. We channel our energy thru our body, therefore eliminating "outside" interference like stress & sickness. Although a common cold is not avoidable, we can prevent that cold could get worse.

Wk4 Classmate Comment: Shrav Krishna

Shrav's Original Post;

Wk4 Blog Post - The Art of Possibility ch. 9-12

Good evening fellow EMDT cohort and staff,

First and foremost, I'd like to congratulate each and every one of you all that shared your Leadership Document drafts during Wimba on Tuesday night and Wednesday night. I thought you all did a fantastic job, and I am super stoked of the great possibilities in hearing several success stories down the road!

Now onto this week's Art of Possibility blog post. Chapter's 9-12 were simply incredible. I'm going to chime in on a particular passage that I felt was truly profound and was just the type of motivation I needed to hear should I get selected to present my Leadership Project at The Illinois Education and Technology Conference.

Zander is by far the most resilient, confident, gregarious, and focused human being that I have ever in my entire life come to discover. Flying out from Boston to Washington at 8am, JUST for an UNEXPECTED 20 minute meeting to entice the LEGENDARY Rostropovich to play in his orchestra, and fly back to Boston at 12pm with successfully getting the guy to agree??? The man truly knows how to enroll others and light a spark. If that were me, I'd be too busy preparing myself on that flight on how to come across to him. However, I shouldn't need to allow my fear and nerves to beat myself over -- Our universe is ALIVE with sparks and the capacity to make the impossible, possible, so long as we bare passion! First, I wholeheartedly agree with Ben Zander's dad, Walter Zander, that "certain things in life are better done in person". My cohort and I are enormously lucky and grateful to have the opportunity of a lifetime to engage our passions and action research with a receptive audience of likeminded visionaries. To enroll them into adopting our passion, we need to approach them with the confidence that they are willing to get swept off their feet and inspired. We need to speak with the premise of that which would make US be swept away with inspiration. We need to have NO doubt whatsoever that others will love our pioneering ideas. Only then, can we reap the given benefits that were already promised to us from the get-go. Showing up is half the work, if you have the passion for success and change.

Here's an inspirational story I'd like to share. Last night, I was watching Conan O'Brien's talk showConan and we were all pleasantly delighted to engage in a comedic standup routine by up-and-coming comedian, Brody Stevens. It was clear in my eyes that he hadn't had too much experience performing before a huge publicized live audience. However, the man did exceptionally well simply by periodically saying out loud "Yes! Positive ENERGY!". It was an addicting mantra that helped him remain on top of his game. In one of his bits, Brody said that he wanted to get laid -- fair enough. However, he said he'd have a BETTER chance of getting laid after making people laugh through his live standup routine, rather than call up his lady friends via telephone.

Check out his debut on Conan

...YES! POSITIVE ENERGY! Can you guys harbor the same outlook and desire to create a spark in your Leadership Project presentations or papers? A "no" from your audience can seem like a door slamming in your face, especially when you tell yourself that your audience is not engaged. However, even when the audience was not laughing at each and every one his jokes, Brody still told himself out loud, "yes" and kept ENROLLING us into HIS passion. Don't throw in the towel while you're in the heat of selling OPPORTUNITIES and POSSIBILITIES, just hold on to it until you make a cruise ship towel animal!!! 

Thank you for reading my loyal subscribers. See you all in Month 12. 


My Comments;

Hi Shrav.

I remember that my former boss said the same thing, when I was coordinating the audiovisual requirements for a students' convention. She told me to go to the director's department office and confirm that everything is set. Working in public service made you realize that people like when they are treated as friends and not as clients. I think or should I say, I believe that one of the reasons that professors or directors ask for my participation in activities is that I "personalized" my work according to their needs.

Wk4 Leadership Blog Post: Leadership Role Model Reflection

Like the discussion board post at the beginning of MAC course this month, I believe that this is a difficult topic for me to write. During my 43 years, I've been influenced by many people that I can't write about only one.  Let me see if by writing this words, I can go down to one.

What can I say about a leader? What defines a leader? Vision, determination, motivation, imagination are some of the qualities that a leader should have to inspire, light a spark within ourselves, and make us take his vision, his example and improve it, go beyond of what he/she did.

In music, Elvis and the Beatles led by opening the world to create and to listen music as a whole, not as different genres or colors. Modern music has a mix of Blues, Jazz, Classical, Reggae, Country, etc.  Elvis gave us American by mixing blues and country.  Beatles gave us the world.  They redid rock 'n' roll, and opened the doors to Indian music through Ravi Shankar.

A personal favorite is baseball great, Roberto Clemente. Not only he was the first Puertorican to have batted 3,000 hits, but his humanitarian work in giving baseball clinics to kids and to help those in dire need.  He died on his way to Managua, Nicaragua after the earthquake of 1972. He is one of those opened the door to hispanics in Baseball. I remember watching on "PBS" the Ken Burns documentary "Baseball" and baseball players, reporters and announcers, still talk about his "greatness" on the field and in life. I remember when I was in little league and we were always looking who had the No. 21 on his shirt.

Video from YouTube Roberto Clemente-Sportscentry (1 of 4)

I can mention one of my teachers. My History teacher in High School, Mr. Jesus Ortiz, who taught us about history and our history.  He taught us how maturity would hit us, how we are going to mature and how we were going to deal with life, once we were in college.

Maybe, maybe not these examples made me the person that I'm today....

You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.....John Lennon.

Wk4 Reading: The Art of Possibility: Keep the Fire Burnin'

Hi my fellow cohorts and professor:

Yes, I put or should I say quote REO Speedwagon on my title, but that's how I looked at this week reading.  Chapters 9-12 explain so much about opening the world of possibilities to those who share this world around us. How we can motivate, engage, inspire students, friends, co-workers, to approach problems, obstacles or difficulties with a different view, taking advantage of having a difficult situation to a positive, productive moment.

I believe that this week's reading sums up what we can do to work with "our board", our lives.  It teaches us that this world is a community, not a race that we had to win.  We must deal as "we" and not as "I". I was impressed how Ben storm into Cora's coaching and how sarcastic he was when speaking to her as missing the rehearsal. He forgot Rule No.6 and it cost, not him, but the orchestra the resignation of Cora.  After admitting his mistake, he did what he taught to his students. He wrote a letter to Cora, giving himself an A. This humble act of reflection improved and strengthen his relationship with Cora.  He lit the spark himself, looked at his board and approach the situation as a "we" instead of "I"...

How fascinating!!!!

* photo by James Hall Robinson. Creative Commons

sábado, 19 de mayo de 2012

Wk3 Classmate Commet: Amanda Rhymer

Amanda's Original Post;

MAC Week Three: The Way Things Are, and don't forget Rule No. 6!

As I read the next four chapters in The Art of Possibility this week, I couldn't help but reflect upon the discussion board topic that we were also give for this week.  I'm pretty sure Dr. Joe knew what he was doing this week.  Our discussion this week had to do with the barriers to integrating technology in the classroom.  We were supposed to discuss, from our experience, what it is that keeps teachers from embracing new technology.  Our answers varied from time commitment to fear of failure, lack of PD to lack of support from Admin. Since most of us are classroom teachers, we hit probably the top ten roadblocks, easily.  But after the reading this week, my eyes are open to some new possibilities!

In the chapter, The Way Things Are, the authors discuss our tendency to see the negative in a bad situation, instead of seeing it for what it really is...just another situation.  They also discuss the tendency to express problems as a downward spiral, I hear this all the time in the Teacher's Lounge!!  The same teachers who balk at integrating new technology are typically the same people who express their frustration with "these" students, who are always the worst students ever, and Oh! Just wait! The class coming up is the worst EVER!! It's so frustrating, and disheartening, if you buy into all that talk.  Why would anyone ever want to dedicate their lives to teaching? It's much more encouraging to think of these kids as being different from previous generations, not better or worse, and to think of ways to reach them that weren't available in previous generations.

Where are you speaking from:

And finally, lest we all forget, remember Rule No. 6!!

{Not to give it away if you haven't read the book, but Rule No. 6 simply states: Don't take yourself so goddamn seriously!}
{PS: There are NO other rules!}

My Comments;

Hi Amanda;

I've seen and heard those type of teachers or should i meant, professors at the university. They are always complaining during the trimester about this group of students or that group of students. They always had a group who are good and a delight to teach and other groups that are a nightmare to teach. They don't look at what can they do to make that nightmarish group a good group. They don't look for ways or alternatives to motivate them to assist to class or to motivate them to study.

I think that in last week's discussion board or one of the comments that I made was from one of the professors that didn't want to teach the basic literature class because the students don't like reading. I told her why she didn't chose another type of literature, one they would like, for example comic books, magazines. She told me that it was ridiculous to have them reading comic books. I told her not the Archie or Mickey Mouse type of comic books, but graphic novels, where there are more mature themes or issues. She kept complaining and not look at the possibility to adapt or to try, at least, the alternative that I was given her.

viernes, 18 de mayo de 2012

Wk3 Classmate Comments: Dara Easterling.

Dara's original post;

enable, engage, equality

From this week's reading, especially in Chapter 5, I gleamed the importance of enabling through the process whether in an orchestra, business, or educational setting.  I am sure most of us have seen those tyrannical bosses that want things one way and don't want any feedback or opinions about what is going on.  But by offering them ways in which to communicate and be involved and be the leader in some cases they gain more from their contributions to the cause.  

Another thing that I can take away from the readings is how they all tie into engagement (collaboration, teamwork, having fun and not being serious, and acceptance.  The stool that I learned about previously was the first thing that came to mind when just looking at the titles to each chapter but as I read through it all tied together and made sense.  Each factor shows that there is a need for the support whether it is done on a personal level, material level (i.e. the white paper), or using technology (a video or blog).

I know that this response seems a little off the beaten track but in terms of making meaning this is how I made meaning out of the reading.

image- engaging in conversation. Retrieved from http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/?CTT=97

My comments;

Hi Dara;

As I was reading chapters 5-8 I began to remember some of my "tyrannical" bosses. These type of boss always take too much seriousness on their work and they don't even let other ideas flow or contribute to the workplace. They feel the own everything and if you don't do your work the way they want, you're out.

Wk3 Leadership Blog Post: Leadership Project Hub

Good afternoon everybody;

For this week's post, I would like to think of the choice I made to present my Leadership Project.  I chose my AR project title: "Connecting Teachers using Virtual Resources".  Although I believe that the topic of motivating teachers to use technology has been used a lot, we still see that there's still a resistant of teachers or professors, especially in High Education to incorporate technology in their classrooms or to work in an online environment.

I chose to present, because I felt that there could be more educators that had faced the same problems and could bring good suggestions to begin changing or shifting paradigms on those teachers/professors who resist using technology on their classroom.

I chose the FETC conference that will take place in Orlando on January 2013 and the GaETC - Georgia Educational Technology Conference, which will take place in November, this year.  For me, it will be a great experience as a person and as a future educator to share with other educators what have I learned during my AR project.

Leadership Project - as of May 18, 2012 (Draft)

Wk1 Leadership Blog Post- Published May 5, 2012

Wk2 Leadership Blog Post - Published May 12, 2012

jueves, 17 de mayo de 2012

Wk3 Reading: The Art of Possibility: The Tao of Living.

Hi there!!!!

I hope that these stories sum up this week's incredible reading (I should've gotten this book years ago).

It was 2006 and I already had a year practicing Tai Chi Chuan. There was one of the group that came from another school of martial arts and had an image of what a martial artist should be. There were a couple of times that one of us didn't brought the straight sword to class or the fan and he always said: "Oh what kind of martial artist are you, forgetting everything, you should be prepared at all times". During one of our classes we were going to practice the combat straight sword routine for demonstration at the World Tai Chi & Qigong Day. That day I forgot my sword and I was going to use of my Sifu's sword.  The guy said the same comment again and I turned around and said: "Lighten up, man. Are you going to be carrying a sword 24 hours a day?  Shut up and enjoy the practice!!!".

During 2006 we were offered to go to China for the Second Traditional World Wushu Championships.  We were going to Zhengzhou, home of the famous Shaolin Temple and Chen Village, one of the cradles of Tai Chi Chuan. Our group began to practice hard every day and every free moment we had it was for practice.  Our friend from the first story, didn't joined the group, because he planned to go to India to visit his guru. He already made up a wall, because he didn't take kindly the corrections made by one of the senior students.  Instead of going to his center self and take the opportunity to be part of the group and to benefit from the practice, he decided to stay out of the group and fall behind.

Last story (I promise this will be short, I hope). When I was playing guitar with the last band that I played with, the director of the group wanted to rehearse the songs the same way they were recorded. There was no room for improvisation. I thought this is wrong, because we have to fill 3 sets of 45 minutes each, so each song is about 3 minutes, by the time we finished the first set, we would have, at least 25 minutes more to play. Coming from a Classic Rock background (Hendrix, Cream, Led Zeppelin, Santana), I'm used to play long solos and I was cut of expressing myself each time we rehearsed, so I had to adapt to play the songs within their time limit.  Anyway, long story short, we went to play to a nearby pub and what happened? Our first set lasted 20 minutes. We still had 25 minutes to play.  The band director didn't know what to do, so he was planning to add more songs, which didn't resolve the problem.  The sax player and I conspired and we planned to take over the second set. Once we began playing, I kept looking at the horn section for the solo cues. We began to stretch the solos and the band's director went nuts.  He wanted to play the song the way we rehearsed. I said to him: "Keep playing and enjoy".  Lo and behold the band found the groove, the director (he was the bass player) kept playing and by the end of the second set, he was fired up, happy that the set went smooth and we played our best.

This week's reading is about of letting loose, not taking ourselves seriously.  Instead of complaining and look at the limitations or walls that are in front of us, it's about going around the walls. Take advantage of the limitations and make them unlimited.

domingo, 13 de mayo de 2012

Wk2 Wimba Blog Post

This week's my cohorts and the professor discussed the definition of copyright ownership. The area of copyright is one where lawyers are waiting on the wings, like a flock of vultures (did I went a little strong?), for anybody who violates the rights of an artist or filmmaker. Then, what are the options that we as educators have to engage our students to learn? Although, we can create our own productions, either in music or audio, sometimes, time and budget limitations can prevent us for creating content for classes. Students can identify more with content made by their favorite singer/musician or by visual content that is already filmed.

Yes, there are options. We can use a small portion of a song or film for education, criticism, parody, as long we get permission from the artist or filmmaker and ask for their permission.  There's also the Creative Commons solution, which is content that is shared on the Internet.  This content is available to the public as long as is credited on the website/blog/production/content we created.  However, some of the content on Creative Commons are restricted and fall on the copyright law.  There are different combinations of how to use Creative Commons.

It's very easy to violate copyright law. We must be aware of the content that we use or we create. You can avoid using a work that is already done and create one yourself.  But beware, don't copy the same notes, melody, dialog or visual, you are violating copyright law.

sábado, 12 de mayo de 2012

Wk2 Blog Post: Where do I want to share my project.


As I mentioned on last week's post, I chose to present my Leadership Project.  I must admit that I feel nervous about presenting my experiences to a group of educators that probably had encountered the same problems motivating professors to integrate technology in the classroom. I wonder if this topic has become tiresome in this conferences or not. Also, I am looking for conference near my living area (San Juan, Puerto Rico).

Anyway, here are my choices to share my presentation:
1.FETC 2013 http://fetc.org/Events/Florida-Educational-Technology-Conference/Home.aspx

Although the website announces the last conference taken place on last January, there's a link to submit presentation for January 2013.  I need to apply before the end of this month.

2.GaETC - Georgia Educational Technology Conference - http://www.gaetc.org/
This conference takes place in November 2012. I need to submit before September 2012

3. Number #3 will be my backup plan in case I don't get accepted or receive any notification.  I'll publish my research in these two publications:

    a. HETS - Hispanic Educational Technology Services. Besides workshops, HETS promotes an 
        online journal.  Although on their instructions they don't specified the amount of words, they are    
        accepting papers about online learning.  HETS Instructions for publication

    b. NAFSA- Association of International Educators.  Publications that are presented on their bi-
        monthlyjournal meet the requirements of 2,000 words. NAFSA

jueves, 10 de mayo de 2012

Wk2 Classmate Comment: Katie Ross

Katie's Original Post:

Wk2 Reading Entry

It is all invented! I have found that as I get older it is very hard to think outside of the box. I think this is because we allow everyday life to get in the way of free thinking. The question is how does one cultivate a place that doesn’t allow the boxed walls to trap them inside the box.  For me and my team at work we regularly have brainstorming activates. Some of the ideas we come up with never leave the room some become new workshops for all the new students. However just having a team of people coming together all building off of each others ideas is enough to keep the boxes of the wall down in my environment….for the most part. I think working in a place that welcomes a collaborative attitude is something that has been invented to help us work on thinking outside of the box.

My thoughts and actions allow me to see the world as a beautiful place! Don’t get me wrong when my thoughts focus in on politics, diet, processed foods, I get sad.  I feel hopeless at times to the things I mentioned above and I can see how it effects my measurement of the world.  I try to use my positive energy and thoughts on seeing those things as issues that will one day change. 

Chapter 3 really hit home for me.  I struggle with not being so harsh on people and myself, and I’ve been looking for ways to help me not be so harsh.  Adapting the “ Give everyone and yourself an A” mentality is a great way to challenge myself to see the A in everyone.  Even to see the A in people who procrastinate, an A in the people who don’t put in as many house as me, an A in the people who gossip or have a negative attitude. Giving an A to myself is a great way to boost my confidence in areas that I lack confidence.  It’s saying that I’ve already done a great job no matter what the outcome is at this point.  Chapter 3 is going to stick with me for a while, I’ve even posted a sticky note at my desk with a big A, to remind myself to give everyone and myself an A.

How will I contribute today is a great question.  I will contribute by smiling at everyone I see.  They say that smiles are contagious so hopefully my smile will brighten someone else’s day today.  

My Comments:

Hi Katie: 

When you are in a workplace that has the same attitude about possibilities, the challenge is how to implement those ideas because every idea is good. But, when you have somebody who doesn't look at the whole picture and creates walls inside, then the motivation dissipates and it becomes a tiresome process to open that person's mind to possibilities. For example, today I had a professor in the computer center complaining about teaching a class that has to do with literature. How students don't like to read. I said and quote: "How about letting the students read something they like, newspaper, comic books, magazines". The reply was "how a comic book can be considered literature" and I said "well it's not Shakespeare, but it's literature". The professor still complains and didn't saw the different alternatives to engage students to read.

Wk2 Classmate Comment: Shrav Krishna

Shrav's Original Post:

Wk2 Blog Post - The Art of Possibility ch. 1-4

This week I began reading The Art of Possibility by Rosamund Stone and Benjamin Zander. If you ever felt we are all living in one giant rat race of a world where we are all constantly struggling to survive, constantly competing against one another, and constantly hung up on measuring our successes, you are not alone. In fact, there are countless others, including myself, that have the desire and capability in transporting to another vast universe of possibility. 

Chapter 1 helped me understand that our minds are designed to string events into story lines, or in other words, construct. Just like the senses of every species are vastly different and fine-tuned to perceive information critical to their survival, we also can design our own existence with our own internal "map" for survival. However, before we can go about creating our own happiness, we need to realize that it's all invented. Opportunities are all around us, and will not come to us. We have to strategically and methodically work hard and build a bridge to those opportunities. To my initial surprise, I was able to complete the famous nine-dot puzzle provided under 15 seconds in my mind, using my own rules and POSSIBILITIES, such as using the whole sheet of paper. The best strategy in helping with the practice it's all invented is to eradicate common assumptions. 

Chapter 2 helped me to truly and effectively contrast the 'Measurement World' vs. this so-called 'Universe of Possibility'. In simpler terms, the 'Measurement World' is a confined world where we are constantly jumping hurdles and obstacles to strive for success or a better place than where we are. The 'Universe of Possibility' is what we enter once re realize that our everyday reality is not confined to traditional frameworks within society. In a realm of possibility, we gain knowledge by invention and it consists of all worlds, aside from the 'Measurement World', such as "Infinite World', 'Generative World, and 'Abundant World'. Most of us can easily experience it by just forgetting ourselves and become part of all being. The best quote of this chapter to me was: "In the measurement world, you set a goal and strive for it. In the universe of possibility, you set the context and let life unfold." It helped me understand that in order to be successful, we shouldn't be hung up on achieving the mark, yet rather participating joyfully with our projects and goals to be better able to connect to people all around us. 

Chapter 3 was my favorite chapter of this week's reading, because it was very inspiring and helped me understand the heart of mastery. The first example that was posed in the beginning of the chapter stated that if you simply give a student a B+, you are only matching them up against other students, yet if you constructively point out the student's errors, you are indicating something real about their performance. Not only that, issuing out a bland grade only creates competition that puts a strain on connecting with others and too often consigns students to a solitary journey! I loved the Michaelangelo quote provided: "Inside every block of stone or marble dwells a beautiful statue; one need only remove the excess material to reveal the work of art within." Metaphorically, this beautiful statue in education is each child's developing skills, creativity, mastery, and self-expression. THIS should be the practice of giving an A -- an enlivening approach that promises to transform you as well as them by supporting them to be all they dream of being. This is another fine way of entering the 'Universe of Possibility', rather than keeping your eye on the statue's roughness of the uncut stone in the 'Measurement World'. Another quote that opened my mind greatly was: "Standards can help us by defining the range of knowledge a student must master to be competent in his field. However, standards and constant alterations of grades defines the limits of what is possible between us." If everyone were to be granted an A, we can all be open to different perspectives than the instructor's, and everyone will really listen and engage. I think this is why we are all given 100 points for professionalism in the beginning of each class, in accordance with Full Sail University's GPS guidelines.

Chapter 4 covered what it takes to be a contribution. The opening story of the woman throwing stranded starfish's back into the sea happily and serenely, much to a bystander's concern and dismay that there are too many starfish and not enough time to get them all back into the ocean, was epic. There truly was no mention of a rescue mission or a measured goal, so why create mountains out of molehills? We all can be contributors in our own right. I grew up as the second child of a very accomplished brother who graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in computer science from a traditional 4-year university -- so I often felt I was living in his shadows, especially as my parents constantly praised his accomplishments and measured successes more than nurture my comparable potential. The game of contribution in chapter 4 is defined as: "waking up each day and basking in the notion that you are a gift to others". This is why I always treat others impartially and comfort them with the knowledge that they all have something unique to bring to the table. I truly admire the instructor of the music performance class who had his class take a moment to write down how they have "contributed" over the pass week! What made this so awesome was how the contributions did not need to be about just about the course content, yet anything that comes to mind. This, in turn, produces a shift away from self-concern and engages us in a relationship with others that is an arena for making a difference collectively. We all have complementary perspectives and a voice that needs to be heard. The sooner we realize that, the sooner we all can have a one-way trip to the "Universe of Possibility". 

My Comment:

Hi Shrav;

When I was reading the first four chapters of this book, I began to see my older brother complaining and lectured me about my life, and the decisions that I've made. And you know what? I began to smile, because I realized that I accomplished more than he did. Sure, he has a well paying-job, a good apartment, wife and a daughter. But, is he giving himself an A for that? I don't think so. On the other hand, I am finishing my Masters Degree, traveled to China representing my country, played with my band on national TV. Did I give myself an A. You betcha!!!!. I think that instead of looking at the things you don't like from a sibling, a student or a co-worker, or boss, we should be looking to the positive side of that person and how they contribute to our lives and to our work.

Wk2 Reading Blog: The Art of Possibility: Stepping into Life...

Creative Commons photo by Image Zen

Yesterday I finished reading the first four chapters of "The Art of Possibility" and it blew me away.  I learned that we must be open to looking at live with a positive perspective.  We must open the possibility to us and those who are around us to do their best, to feel that we contribute to the bitterness of the people who are around us, to create a positive impact, and lasting impression to students, family, friends, etc.

It wouldn't be fair to write about each chapter, because they are linked to each other and it should be treated as a whole. And these are the first four chapters, I can't imagine the rest of the book. Every sentence that I read, every paragraph made me reflect and think of how I judge those who are around me, and those that judge me.  Did I received an A? Did I gave an A?  I was impressed how students attitude in the music class improved when they were told that they had an A, but, they have to justify why, by writing a letter saying how they changed to the better as a person after taking the class, and how they contribute to each others improvement.

Chapter 3 was like a hook to the jaw and knocking me down, like the question of which musician or song touched me deeply. Well, this chapter did. I began to reflect on my life and of those that are not around me and those who still are.  This chapter, and the rest of the book can be applied to school, work(for those nagging bosses), sports, everything.

I hope that this week's reading open a world of possibilities to you....Salud!!!!

sábado, 5 de mayo de 2012

Wk1 Leadership post: To Publish or to Present

In this crazy little cosmos that we are at this moment on our month 11 (yes, we are almost there, one more month), I am debating on a big question.  To publish or to present my Leadership project.  Both alternatives are great.  If I publish, my work will be read, studied and analyzed by my peers, professors and experts on the educational field.  If I present, I'll be able to establish a debate direct with those who are there and to meet the who's who of educational technology and media design.

I think that I'll be presenting my Leadership project. Why? because I've been known to be a good storyteller and because of the challenge of being confronted by the people that I'll be addressing this project.  Another challenge will be to use few slides, so "Presentation Zen" will be a great help to accomplish this "feat".  I know that I'll probably regret choosing presenting, but I know that at the end, the presentation will be the most rewarding experience I could get.

viernes, 4 de mayo de 2012

Wk1 Classmate Comment: Cynthia Madanski

Cynthia's original post:

Week One Reading: Copyright Issues

Copyright laws seem to have many grey areas.  I am always uncertain and try to err on the safe side.  My school district was in a copyright dispute with a publishing company a few months ago.  The following link from the Toledo Blade newspaper explains what is going on:

The claim states “Align, Assess, Achieve entered into a copyright license agreement with TPS for company books and materials that provide teacher guidance in meeting the Common Core education standards… TPS could only use the works to prepare pacing guides for the teachers for whom the district had bought the company's book.  Despite the agreement, according to the complaint, TPS in August had teachers transcribe the copyrighted work in its entirety. The district later posted the copies on its intranet, making it available to all teachers, the company claims. TPS falsely attributed authorship of the unauthorized electronic versions of the AAA copyrighted works to the teachers the district employed as scriveners to steal AAA's intellectual property."

The attorney for my district is quoted as saying, "We don't believe there's any validity to the claim.” 

Teachers were not given any further information as to how the dispute was settled.  However, the pacing guides were removed from the employee intranet for a few months before being put back up, so we assume the claim has been dismissed. 

In searching for more information on how printed material can be used by a classroom teacher, I found the following source helpful:  “Reproduction of Copyrighted Works by Educators and Librarians” This article can be found at the following link:

This is a wordle incorporating text from the article:

I found the Good Copy / Bad Copy video to be very fascinating.  I think the Nigerian filmmaker summed up how copyright laws are to be followed succinctly:

“If you don’t have permission, you can’t use it.”

I learned that it is all about getting permission, not about money at all.  I often wonder about showing movies at school. I have seen schools who host family movie nights.  They rent a DVD, and project it in the gym for families to watch together.  I am hesitant to participate; are they breaking copyright laws by showing the video in a large gathering like that, with over 100 people viewing?  Most teachers reply it is OK because they are not charging for it.  I question if they have permission.

Another quote I pondered from Good Copy / Bad Copy was “We don’t want to look at this from the negative angle…copyright is not about stopping people from using your work, but getting them to use your work legally and giving you money for what they have done with your work.”

I think that makes so much sense.  I am not opposed to sharing lessons I have created with others, in fact I believe collaboration is the most crucial tool for teachers today.  However, I do want to be recognized for the work I have done in creating these lessons.  A site like TeachersPayTeachers.com allows for teachers to share lessons, be recognized as the creator, and make money for the intellectual work provided.

My Comment:

This reminds me when I (I think you too), made cassette tapes from music of different LP's for our enjoyment. I used to do tapes for my friends in case that they could not afford the record, or if the record was out of print. Was I violating copyright law? Could be or could be not. I didn't profit from any of those tapes. In case of your movies. was there an instructional or educational purposes for showing the movie? Or was for enjoyment only.
On education, we can use an extract or a portion of the movie, but we must credit the source. Same with text and audio. Now, in online education, are online courses copyrighted? If you have a professor/teacher that builds a course using content that he/she wrote (book, thesis), is that course protected by copyright? There's a term called "work for hire". This term has created a lot of issues and conflicts where I work and one of the biggest reason why some professors are reluctant to teach online. The university has ownership of the material worked by students and professors. Can the music business and film making industry adapt this method to the artists? I hope not.

Wk #1 Classmate Comment: Nykoll Hyatt

Nykoll's original post:

What's the real deal?

A Fairy(y) Use tale explained it best. The video was to the point but quite disjointed. I guess I don't really have an opinion one way or the other about the copyright issues.  On some level I understand it.  The artists and their management team want all the financial gains that I guess are rightfully theirs.  But as was stated by some in the Good Copy, Bad Copy video, the main people who are sampling and pirating are the artists fans.

These kinds of copyright violations are ways that poor people make money and are able to feed their families.  Why has the law changed from 14 years to 'forever' now anyway? Who is really making the big bucks behind this? Yes, these artists are losing revenue, but why not let others reap a little bit too? I heard something once about Li'l Wayne 'giving' his work away on the Internet, yet he's still making money. If that is the case, then I think there is much more going on.

How can they (the US, it seems) prohibit people in other countries from doing what they are doing? Like Charles Igwe said, "how can you be bigger than me and smaller than me at the same time?"  The article on, 'US government finally admits most piracy estimates are bogus', clearly shows that there is more to this issue than meets the eyes and the ears.

I don't get the big deal. I kind of understand getting permission to use someone's work before you make it into a money making venture for yourself. But how much would they want from what these fans or poor people are making and, is it only the original artist that these 'entrepreneurs' would have to split the money with?

My Comments:

Hi Nykoll;

Unfortunately, music has become too much of a "business" than "music". The Internet has become a big place where artists can promote their work and still make a profit. The problem is, I think, that record companies are losing their grip on the artist output, without the consent of managers or the record companies. Artists/musicians, can make the record they want, the style or genre of music they like and still get approval by us, the fans. I think that same thing happens with independent filmmakers. They can do great movies or shorts without giving away their rights or a big part of the revenue to the big movie studios. Check on You Tube all the fan based movies. The quality of the image as well as sound and special effects are great.

I think that the extension of copyright law is a way to guarantee that the record companies or film studios can still profit from the musicians/actors/filmmakers for years and years.