Welcome back, friends and family.
In 2020 I was selected as one of the winners of the Divergent Award from the Initiative for 21st Century Literacies Research. Because we could not meet together for an awards ceremony and series of keynotes, the honorees submitted a video. Here are my responses.
This video was edited together into a literacy doczoomentary reflecting on the past twenty years of 21st-century literacies and where we go from here. Enjoy.
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Explaining the Pandemic to my Past Self – 1 Year Later
It’s been exactly one whole year of forest fires, murder hornets, pandemics, isolations, protests, quarantines, elections, vaccines, and riots and yet here we find ourselves, back at the beginning…
This series of videos from Julie Nolke is funny…and terrifying at the same time.
Enjoy Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.
Guns don’t kill people…good guys and the legitimization of gun violence
It’s Time To Retire The ‘Guns Don’t Kill People — People Kill People’ Argument. Actually, guns DO Kill People.
The research linked above utilizes an online concealed carry forum to critically analyze how firearm proliferation is rationalized in the U.S.
The analysis focuses on three specific examples of violence—the Parkland, Florida, and Philando Castile shootings, and stories of children who find guns and shoot themselves and/or others to critically examine the discourse used to rationalize the proliferation of guns as a response to gun violence in the U.S.
The “guns don’t kill people” argument is flawed because it sidesteps the debate. The issue is not whether guns can spontaneously kill people on their own. The issue involves how incredibly easy a modern weapon makes killing.
Police Violence And Reform: The Inequality In Restorative Justice Opportunities
From George Floyd to Adam Toledo to Daunte Wright to countless other killings, the world is asking questions about racial injustice and excessive use of force by police. A patchwork approach to police reform has left the nation at a critical crossroad with no clear path forward.
One possible path might be available in restorative justice. In educational contexts, this is based on three pillars:
- Empathy for all and by all
- A mumbled “sorry” is not enough
- Everyone is involved in the healing
NPR’s Michel Martin speaks with attorney sujatha baliga about whether restorative justice principles are useful after a shooting incident or killing involving a police officer.
How to Help Your Adolescent Think About the Last Year
For many of us in education, we’re turning the page to the summer…and the fall. As the number of vaccinated adults rises, we begin to imagine a post-COVID world.
In previous posts and interviews, I’ve discussed the need to learn lessons from this global pandemic.
Online schools are here to stay, even after the pandemic. Some families have come to prefer stand-alone virtual schools and districts are rushing to accommodate them — though questions about remote learning persist.
Judith Warner suggests that we should not refer to this as a “lost year.” Also, screen time with friends? It’s good for mental health.
Pew Report on Social Media Use in 2021
A new report from the Pew Research Center suggests that despite a string of controversies and the public’s relatively negative sentiments about aspects of social media, roughly seven-in-ten Americans say they use any kind of social media site. This is a share that has remained relatively stable over the past five years.
A majority of Americans say they use YouTube and Facebook, while the use of Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok is especially common among adults under 30.
Google Earth is now a 3D time machine
Google has pushed out what it says is Google Earth’s “biggest update since 2017” with a new 3D time-lapse feature.
Entering the new “Timelapse” mode of Google Earth will let you fly around the virtual globe with a time slider, showing you satellite imagery from the past 37 years.
Using the 3D Google Earth globe, you can watch cities being built, forests being cut down, and glaciers receding.
What to say when someone is gaslighting you
The term “gaslighting”— as in, the psychological manipulation, not the 19th-century profession—has been thrown around a lot over the past decade or so.
Here’s how to deal with gaslighting and stand firm in your truth:
- Know how to recognize when gaslighting is happening
- Stand firm in your truth
- Write things down
- Keep the conversation simple
- Be willing to leave the conversation
- Don’t worry about trying to outsmart the gaslighter
- Increase your support system and share your truth
Treat my first like my last, and my last like my first.
If spiders and spiderwebs fascinate you, then you may be interested to know researchers have turned spiderwebs into music. It’s a virtual look into the world of spiders and the vibrations they sense.
Look/listen here. Perhaps VR (virtual reality) is more your speed.
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