mx. generation x politics. summary sentence.

Creating a safe environment for diverse(political preferences) Advance Placement students who are wanting to hold and share an opinion, and be properly informed about current political context.

mx. reading response. sense of community.

My attempt at breaking down what McMillan & Chavis are saying. Some thoughts are pulled directly, but I tired to break it down into my own words if at all possible to make sure i get what they're teaching.

Sense of Community has four parts:
  • Membership
    • Boundaries
      • created by things like language, religion, or dress
      • shows who does and does not belong
    • Emotional safety
      • just that, a safe and secure place they can be in
    • A sense of belonging and identification
    • Personal investment
    • A common symbol system
      • "The symbol is the beginning of the social world as we know it"
      • flags, logos, architecture style, even rituals, and forms of speech
      • ie gang signs, tattoos, group names, nicknames
  • Influence
    • it is bidirectional
      • members must feel motivated to influence the group, and group cohesion can only exist if the group has influence over its members
      • this "bidirection-ality" of influence helps reassure members that they are experiencing things similarly to other members
    • from trust comes influence
      • only when two(or more) people trust each other, can you influence them. the mutal trust between persons or person and group needs to exist before there is safety to be influenced
  • Integration & Fulfillment of Needs
    • needs meaning: more than needs, also wants
    • shared values of members of the group can tell which "needs" beyond survival will be pursued
    • "search for similarities"
    • "creating an economy of social trade"
  • Shared Emotional Connection
    • the definitive element for true community
    • a shared history becomes the community's story symbolized in art(in a broad sense)
    • 7 important ideas to create an emotional connection
      • personal actions will increase the likelihood of people becoming close
      • the quality of interaction
      • if relationships between members are hazy, they won't feel as close than if they know how each other feels
      • a bigger event, like a crisis, creates an even stronger bond
      • invest more time into the group, feel more attached to it
      • the spiritual bond, hard to describe, but everyone knows it. that sense that you're close to the group, no matter what happens.
      • if you have positive moments with a community you'll be closer to it, if you have negative moments, you'll feel alienated from it
though it's quite interesting when people try to put the interaction of humans into equation form. i understand the first "equation":
shared emotional connection = contact + high-quality interaction.
if you have a "high-quality interaction" you connected more than just a simple hello and small talk. You were able to connect deeper by agreeing on ideas, think the same thoughts, come to the same conclusions.

"equation" number two:
High-quality interaction = (events with successful closure - ambiguity) x (event valence x sharedness of the event) + amount of honor given to members - amount of humiliation.
I'm getting what McMillan & Chavis are trying to get at, though it's a little late for my brain to wrap around this stuff. I feel like both of these "equations" are not completely rocksolid, but they are a basis for figuring out human reactions to the sense of community.

everything talked about in the article works in tandem. Everything is connected to everthing else. You cannoy have one part of the cycle missing and still have a complete sense of community. Even the slightest bit of alienation in any way, and the community becomes in danger of not being a community anymore. The idea of a community takes time and effort, it just doesn't pop up over night. If it somehow does, though, it would be a very weak community compared to one that has been around for almost 4 years, like the community we, seniors, have created for ourselves here in graphic design.

source: wright-house.com


    mx. initial research. high school current events classes.

    • research/brainstorming activity parameters
      • sharing events directly effecting you
      • learning about events in other countries
      • vote on the most pertinent events
      • pick out an event that intrigues you and learn more about it
      • talk with someone in a different country about whats going on with him/her
      • record video of yourself talking about whats going on in your town/city
      • research what people are talking about and come to class talking about it
      • if its a gradeschool setting, teachers could relate current events to every subject they’re teaching
      • be able to pull out the non-biased facts
    • physical boundaries
      • one school
      • interschool
    • equipment
      • computer
      • ipad
      • iphone
      • classroom
      • other emerging technologies
        • video chat(vlogging)
      • interschool
        • space to meet in with other school
      • one school
        • classroom to meet in
    • what & who’s involved
      • students
      • teachers
      • spreading of current knowledge & events
    • demographics
      • high school students
      • ages 14-18
      • girls and boys
      • all nationalities
    • wants and needs of the individual and community
      • inform people of whats going on in their community
      • having a safe, unbiased space to research and learn
    • symbols, icons, tools, markers, etc

    • motivation for participation
      • stay informed of whats going on
      • rewards system
        • points
        • ranking
        • spotlight of most actives
      • help bring attention to communities in need
      • good grades
        • grading system
    • initial questions
      • interschool or singular school?
      • focus on a small demographic?
      • focus on particular current event?
      • what should our boundaries be?
    links about current events & high schoolers


    mx. reading/video response.

    this is an amalgamation of everything lumped into one, it's not a "typical" response, but isn't that what these readings are about? doing things that fit the person best, not what's "best for everyone"?

    The basic/general fact about education, especially education of grade school and high school kids, is that it's behind. My entire grade school and high school experience was lugging around huge-ass books that had old, out-dated text in them. It's pretty darn hard to keep a 500 page textbook constantly up-to-date. Coming from someone who loves making books, and loves the history behind them, it makes my soul sad to say that physical textbooks are dying, but not fast enough. Everything read and watched before writing this points out the blatant fact that we live in a world unlike that of even five years ago. We are constantly being bombarded with so many different types of streams of information, that a textbook is now the most analog and old-fashioned of them all. Why, in an age when everyone(except myself) has twitter, facebook, email, and the entirety of the internet connected to their phone, would someone be equally or more excited about a textbook than everything else. That just doesn't make sense. Ignoring new forms of information gathering is ridiculous. Don't fight the inevitable. The way to keep students engrossed with what's going on in the classroom is to embrace what's distracting them and use it to engage them. Moving to digital devices and using the internet allows the learning to become individualized to what works best with each student, and constantly up-to-date. Why, in an environment where almost everything is at your fingertips, would you restrict learning to be the same for everyone, when one isn't everyone. Format the learning to both what works best for the student, and what interests the student. Like in the video "kids learn to navigate the multimedia world" if you can learn, study, and enhance your writing and english skills through making videos just as well as reading and writing papers, why not choose the more engaging and exciting method? It's a different way of thinking, but it's not a bad way of thinking. In fact, it's an excellent way of thinking. By embracing the excellent ways of learning, it makes it more fun, which interns makes everyone smarter. The faster we embrace new ways of learning, the more educated our entire society will be. No longer will school be a drag and something we have to do. It'll be something that people want to do, and can't get enough of. I've always believed that the best type of learning is when you don't realize you're learning. Take the emphasis off of the information you're trying to teach, and onto the way you teach it, and they will learn faster and be more engaged. It may sound sneaky, but at least it's sneaky in a good way.

    By taking learning digital, it also opens up the possibility of group learning. Make it a discussion between students of the same grade all over the country, or all over the world. Make the information the students are learning an amalgamation of hundreds of textbooks. Give them access to different variations on the same topic. Help them to think on their own. The more information the students learn, the better they will be at this. Help them make sound choices and decisions. "Web 2.0 is all about harnessing collective intelligence." Harness the intelligence of the textbooks and turn knowledge from a biased perspective, to an unbiased perspective. Teach students every side to a topic to help them fully, 100% understand the topic, and help them make and form their own, informed opinions. Once knowledge learning becomes a collective, and holistic view of everything, there should be much less reason to not be informed.