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robertogreco : iraglass   10

Middle School: Not So Bad - Hilary Conklin - The Atlantic
"Yes, it’s true that young adolescents are navigating profound and often complex changes—new bodies, new brain capabilities, and new social realms. But as a former public middle-school teacher who once taught more than 100 young adolescents each day, I have seen firsthand that middle schools can be constructive, happy places. When there are teachers who understand young adolescents and are prepared to teach them, smaller schools and classes that facilitate meaningful relationships, and an intellectually challenging, engaging, and relevant curriculum, middle school can be some of the most inspiring and enlightening years of a young person’s—or teacher’s—life."



"We seem to be at a crossroads, sometimes defaulting to old stereotypes, at other times, embracing more creative possibilities. Glass’s This American Life episode included the perspective that “you're sort of wasting your time trying to teach middle school students anything,” but juxtaposed it with the generous outlook that, “kids that age are fun, interesting, and self-reflective.” A middle school teacher quoted in Gootman’s Times series captured the range of views about teaching in middle schools: “Middle school is like Scotch. At first you try to get it down. Then you get used to it. Then it’s all you order.”

Given the bad rap middle school gets, it’s not surprising that very few future teachers have the goal of working with young adolescents. Research studies have shown that three-quarters of teachers enrolled in secondary teacher education programs (certifying them to teach in grades 6 through 12) preferred teaching at the high-school level to middle-school level. In my work training novice teachers, I see how their stereotypical views of middle school shape their beliefs that not only is it undesirable to teach young adolescents, but that it is actually difficult to accomplish anything intellectually meaningful during the middle school years. And yet, when I have these future educators conduct interviews with young adolescents to learn more about middle schools students’ views on the world, the novice teachers are often astonished to find that kids at this age are capable thinkers who are deeply interested in learning more about—and contributing to—the world around them.

So couldn’t we tell the middle school story differently? Perhaps we should enlist Patterson’s Rafe Katchadorian—I’m confident that he would have the ingenuity to give middle school a whole new narrative."
middleschool  education  teaching  howweteach  smallschools  school  learning  adolescence  relevance  via:lukeneff  2014  hilaryconklin  jamespatterson  iraglass 
january 2014 by robertogreco
Sol LeWitt’s Advice to Eva Hesse: Don’t Worry About Cool, Make Your Own Uncool | gwarlingo
"The unromantic truth is that being an artist in any field is hard work. Because artists need a lot of time alone in order to create, they wrestle with loneliness and insecurity. They face continual self-doubt, as well as the criticism of others. Many artists work with no financial safety net or healthcare. Those who do have some financial stability often work day jobs that drain precious time and energy from their creative work."

"Making space and time to create without interruption is difficult but essential. Our competitive culture rarely rewards stillness and imagination. From childhood, we are programmed to stop day dreaming and told to be constructive and busy instead."

"Artist Sol LeWitt understood fear and the importance of doing better than anyone.

In 1960 he met Eva Hesse, and the two artists formed a decade-long friendship. As Stephanie Buhmann details, “despite superficial disparities (LeWitt’s oeuvre is usually thought of as idea-driven while Hesse’s works reflect the opposite: intimacy, personal gesture, and physical sensuality),” the two artists shared a lot in common. “While Hesse drew inspiration from Minimalist aesthetics and the conceptual clarity that characterized LeWitt’s work, LeWitt respected Hesse’s devotion to the trace of the human hand in art.”"

The letter:
Dear Eva,

It will be almost a month since you wrote to me and you have possibly forgotten your state of mind (I doubt it though). You seem the same as always, and being you, hate every minute of it. Don’t! Learn to say “Fuck You” to the world once in a while. You have every right to. Just stop thinking, worrying, looking over your shoulder wondering, doubting, fearing, hurting, hoping for some easy way out, struggling, grasping, confusing, itching, scratching, mumbling, bumbling, grumbling, humbling, stumbling, numbling, rumbling, gambling, tumbling, scumbling, scrambling, hitching, hatching, bitching, moaning, groaning, honing, boning, horse-shitting, hair-splitting, nit-picking, piss-trickling, nose sticking, ass-gouging, eyeball-poking, finger-pointing, alleyway-sneaking, long waiting, small stepping, evil-eyeing, back-scratching, searching, perching, besmirching, grinding, grinding, grinding away at yourself. Stop it and just DO!

From your description, and from what I know of your previous work and you [sic] ability; the work you are doing sounds very good “Drawing-clean-clear but crazy like machines, larger and bolder… real nonsense.” That sounds fine, wonderful – real nonsense. Do more. More nonsensical, more crazy, more machines, more breasts, penises, cunts, whatever – make them abound with nonsense. Try and tickle something inside you, your “weird humor.” You belong in the most secret part of you. Don’t worry about cool, make your own uncool. Make your own, your own world. If you fear, make it work for you – draw & paint your fear and anxiety. And stop worrying about big, deep things such as “to decide on a purpose and way of life, a consistant [sic] approach to even some impossible end or even an imagined end” You must practice being stupid, dumb, unthinking, empty. Then you will be able to DO!

I have much confidence in you and even though you are tormenting yourself, the work you do is very good. Try to do some BAD work – the worst you can think of and see what happens but mainly relax and let everything go to hell – you are not responsible for the world – you are only responsible for your work – so DO IT. And don’t think that your work has to conform to any preconceived form, idea or flavor. It can be anything you want it to be. But if life would be easier for you if you stopped working – then stop. Don’t punish yourself. However, I think that it is so deeply engrained in you that it would be easier to DO!

It seems I do understand your attitude somewhat, anyway, because I go through a similar process every so often. I have an “Agonizing Reappraisal” of my work and change everything as much as possible = and hate everything I’ve done, and try to do something entirely different and better. Maybe that kind of process is necessary to me, pushing me on and on. The feeling that I can do better than that shit I just did. Maybe you need your agony to accomplish what you do. And maybe it goads you on to do better. But it is very painful I know. It would be better if you had the confidence just to do the stuff and not even think about it. Can’t you leave the “world” and “ART” alone and also quit fondling your ego. I know that you (or anyone) can only work so much and the rest of the time you are left with your thoughts. But when you work or before your work you have to empty you [sic] mind and concentrate on what you are doing. After you do something it is done and that’s that. After a while you can see some are better than others but also you can see what direction you are going. I’m sure you know all that.

You also must know that you don’t have to justify your work – not even to yourself. Well, you know I admire your work greatly and can’t understand why you are so bothered by it. But you can see the next ones and I can’t. You also must believe in your ability. I think you do. So try the most outrageous things you can – shock yourself. You have at your power the ability to do anything.

I would like to see your work and will have to be content to wait until Aug or Sept. I have seen photos of some of Tom’s new things at Lucy’s. They are impressive – especially the ones with the more rigorous form: the simpler ones. I guess he’ll send some more later on. Let me know how the shows are going and that kind of stuff.

My work had changed since you left and it is much better. I will be having a show May 4 -9 at the Daniels Gallery 17 E 64th St (where Emmerich was), I wish you could be there.

Much love to you both.

Sol
sollewitt  evahasse  chuckclose  gwarlingo  michellealdredge  2011  art  artists  glvo  work  doing  making  makersschedule  childhood  creativity  time  focus  iraglass  stephaniebuhmann  insecutiry  loneliness  self-doubt  howwework  criticism  miltonglaser  canon  1965  inspiration  letters  correspondence  motivation  psychology 
february 2013 by robertogreco
Ira Glass - By the Book - NYTimes.com
"People who call reading detective fiction or eating dessert a guilty pleasure make me want to puke."

"Do you have a favorite character or hero from children’s literature?

Hermione. Harry Potter to me is a bore. His talent arrives as a gift; he’s chosen. Who can identify with that? But Hermione — she’s working harder than anyone, she’s half outsider, right? Half Muggle. She shouldn’t be there at all. It’s so unfair that Harry’s the star of the books, given how hard she worked to get her powers."

"You studied semiotics at Brown. How has that informed the way you read novels?

I don’t read novels, but my semiotics study influenced everything about the way I read and edit and write.

But the fact is, I don’t read many books. I’m in production year round. I work long hours, I have a dog and a wife. There’s not a lot of available time for consuming any culture: TV, movies, books. When I read, it’s generally magazines, newspapers and Web sites."
edgarallanpoe  storytelling  howwework  howweread  outsiders  harrypotter  pleasure  reading  books  iraglass  outsider 
august 2012 by robertogreco
Jad Abumrad, Radiolab’s ‘genius’ storyteller, on what public radio needs now: ‘more joy, more chaos’ » Nieman Journalism Lab
How do you hang on to a successful formula while also trying to break free from it?

“I think about Stefan Sagmeister,” the Austrian graphic designer, “who every six years, I think it is, seven years, he just quits his life and moves to some distant spot on the globe and just throws himself into some new art and comes back, refreshed. I think to myself, how can I do that without actually leaving?” he said.

“It’s also going to be about, frankly, it’s going to be about sucking, you know? The only way to really loosen the reins a little bit is to say to yourself, ‘Let’s do an experiment that makes me actually deeply nervous, because it could be bad.’ I’m prepared to suck for awhile.”…

“It needs more joy. It needs more chaos. It needs more anarchy. And it needs more moods. The range of human experiences is covered and reported about on NPR, but it’s not reflected in the tone, and it’s not reflected in the style…"
radiolab  radio  npr  jadabumrad  2011  stefansagmeister  sabbaticals  cv  risktaking  sucking  chaos  anarchy  messiness  work  disruption  thisamericanlife  iraglass  anarchism 
september 2011 by robertogreco
Transom » Radiolab: An Appreciation by Ira Glass
"Artists compete. Not head to head like athletes, but in their souls. Within the appreciation of our fellow artists is the tiny wince, “I wish I’d done that.”

Ira Glass joins us again on Transom, this time for a loving and envious homage to our friends at Radiolab, Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich. A radio master salutes his comrades.

The great thing about Ira’s analysis is that it’s so detailed. He breaks down exactly what’s so good about Radiolab and why. You could almost learn the tricks and do it yourself. Almost. Honestly, though, you’d lose. It’s better sometimes just to appreciate."
art  science  media  storytelling  jadabumrad  iraglass  robertkrulwich  2011  radio  thisamericanlife  radiolab 
september 2011 by robertogreco
Put This On • Sometimes people ask me about how I created my...
"Sometimes people ask me about how I created my little media empire. This is how.

Ira spent 20 years working at NPR before he started This American Life. Twenty years making mistakes, learning from them, thinking about what he’d do with his own show. When he started This Life, NPR turned him down. After 20 years. Told him to do it on his own. So he went out and won some fucking Peabodys.

The day Ira told me he enjoyed a particular episode of my stupid comedy podcast that I didn’t even know he’d every heard of much less listened to was one of the proudest days of my life. For serious.

And speaking of serious: SERIOUSLY, MAKE YOUR THING."
creativity  work  inspiration  tips  howto  iraglass  jessethorn  putthison  persistence  mistakes  learning  perseverance  hardwork  glvo  lcproject  volume  process  2011  making  doing  justdo  do  taste  potential  practice  deadlines  discipline  self-discipline  thisamericanlife 
april 2011 by robertogreco
YMFY - [A quote from] Ira Glass, This American Life Television Series: Season One, Episode: Pandora’s Box
"This is what we do, humans. We tinker and change and endlessly imagine a more perfect future. And, at the same time, we idealize the past. So, we’re trapped. Progress’ constant companion is nostalgia for the way things used to be.<br />
<br />
The thing we forget about progress: there is no master plan. It lurches forward, in the dark, accidentally, and you’re never sure where it’s taking you. There’s no going back, whether it wants to or not."
via:lukeneff  iraglass  past  future  nostalgia  progress  planning  change  futures  thisamericanlife 
december 2010 by robertogreco
interactions magazine | The Art of Editing: The New Old Skills for a Curated Life
"Whether we see it or not, we’re becoming editors ourselves. In the Gutenberg era, the one-to-many relationship, in which an editor dictated the content for the masses, was common. In the post-Gutenberg era, our reliance became more democratic: We sought out editors who could sift through the staggering amount of information for us, signal where to look, what to read, and what to pay attention to. Now there’s another shift at play; you may have seen it reblogged or retweeted recently, in fact. With new tools allowing an unlimited degree of flexibility and freedom, we’re gaining comfort in editing our own media. We are, for the first time, accepting the role of editor, and exhibiting our editorial qualities outward. We’re gaining followers and pointing the way forward for others. But without any training, how are we doing it?"
culture  curation  narrative  convergence  collections  blogging  editing  editors  content  iraglass  via:cervus  cv  ethanzuckerman  lizdanzico  coherence  twitter  tumblr  clayshirky  infooverload  googlereader  rss  intuition  voice  tempo  socialmedia  information  design  writing  media  danahboyd  news 
may 2010 by robertogreco
This American Life - "Secret Life of Daytime"
"Host Ira Glass stands at the corner of Diversey and Broadway in Chicago and describes all the people who are out at 3:00 on a weekday. "
psychology  life  leisure  philosophy  happiness  health  idle  society  simplicity  reading  productivity  wisdom  lifestyle  yearoff  culture  advice  slow  time  sociology  work  people  meaning  economics  iraglass  idleness  thisamericanlife 
may 2007 by robertogreco

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