Category Archives: FYC

Wonder Woman Visits WR 121!

Have you seen the TED Talk on the link between body language and confidence/success? I had my students practice this in class on Thursday, before I gave them a small group activity to conduct and then “teach” to the rest of the class–all on the 2nd day of the term! It functioned as an awesome “icebreaker” exercise (which Igenerally hate and strenuously avoid, but sometimes magic happens if people don’t actually know they’re doing “icebreakers”), and the reigning impression was that it worked really well.

After striking the Superhero (aka the “Wonder Woman”) and Victory poses for 1 minute each, in small groups they read, analyzed, and presented totally new information on literacy to the whole class: a group of people who, for all intents and purposes, were total strangers when they walked in the door that day. And they did a GREAT job. Not only that, after reading and teaching the handout on shifting definitions of literacy, the students had the best understanding of the content, far better than any previous group of students with whom I’ve shared the same handout (which is the starting point for their first formal essay assignment, the Critical Literacy Narrative). Afterward I explained some of the research in psychology around the posing exercises, and they seemed to appreciate and enjoy that as well. The related TED video is now on our Moodle course page, and you can watch it at the link below.

Some examples of how power posing can actually boost your confidence

Field Notes: A Glimpse Inside Great Explorers’ Notebooks | Brain Pickings

Here’s a wonderful link for faculty members who might be using Barry Lopez’s work this year. Lopez, the author of Arctic Dreams, Of Wolves and Men, and “A Dark Light in the West: Racism and Reconciliation” (among many others), is the Lane Community College Reading Together author for 2011-2012. Especially for those who may be reading “The Naturalist,”  included in Vintage Lopez, our selected collection of some of his most famous essays, you’ll find this wonderful array of notebook entries fascinating as well as instructive. They include drawings, prose, watercolors, and photographs that focus a multifaceted lens on the naturalist’s curious, curious mind.

Field Notes: A Glimpse Inside Great Explorers’ Notebooks | Brain Pickings.

National Grammar Day 2010: Ten More Common Grammar Myths, Debunked « Motivated Grammar

Happy Grammar Day! National Grammar Day 2010: Ten More Common Grammar Myths, Debunked « Motivated Grammar.

This will make you smarter (really)

A fascinating new contribution from the folks over at Edge is now available. This year’s collection centers on the question: “What scientific concept will improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit?”

Last week I was talking to my WR 115 class about “reflective learning” as one kind of meta-cognition, and this book could potentially help expand our metacognitive abilities–both students’ and teachers’–in a big way. In terms of writing and especially the teaching of writing, we ask our students to get metacognitive every time we put them together to workshop drafts of their essays, when they think/write about their own writing experiences and practices (in postwrites, revision plans, self-assessment, etc), and when they reflect back on their work in our composition courses as they prepare final portfolios, just to name a few.

Those of you thinking about Lane’s core abilities (which are currently under revision) and/or considering undertaking a critical thinking assessment project will find this book especially timely and, at least from what I’ve seen so far, a pleasure to read, to boot. You can find a description and some wonderful excepts from the text over at Brainpickings (a personal favorite and fabulous resource for all things “cultural” for the curious mind):

This will make you smarter (really).

Visions of Students Today

Visions of Students Today. (A Michael Wesch remix)

Citation Obsession? Get Over It! – Commentary – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Citation Obsession? Get Over It! – Commentary – The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Bedford Bits: Ideas for Teaching Composition

Bedford Bits: Ideas for Teaching Composition.

Bedford Bits: Ideas for Teaching Composition » Blog Archive » Many Roads to Writing | Writing Across the Curriculum | Scoop.it

Bedford Bits: Ideas for Teaching Composition » Blog Archive » Many Roads to Writing | Writing Across the Curriculum | Scoop.it.