Education and Learning with Joi and Mimi Ito

This is a great listen for parents, educators, and anyone interested in how kids (and adults) learn. It’s a conversation between Joi Ito and his remarkable sister Mimi about learning, education, digital media and more. You can find it on YouTube and Soundcloud and Joi’s website:

Youtube —  https://youtu.be/P0CxCR9Uj60

SoundCloud — https://soundcloud.com/joi-ito/33-conversation-with-mimi-ito

Joi’s website — http://podcast.ito.com/33-conversation-with-mimi-ito

If you’re not familiar with Joi and Mimi, here’s a good start:

Mimi Ito — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mizuko_Ito
Joi Ito — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joi_Ito

Hour of Code

Computers are not magical or mysterious. Their amazing abilities are built up from simple ideas. That’s what’s surprising. How did we arrive at today, with these devices in our pocket and a (nearly) global network connecting them, and with software running that allows it all to do so many useful and entertaining things?

Lady Ada, Countess of Lovelace wikipedia, was the first to get it. She understood, before any computers existed, that a machine with a few simple arithmetic abilities could do much more. (Notably, the men who were designing these calculating machines didn’t get it.) It would be about 100 years before the programmable computers she envisioned would be “invented”.

Continue reading “Hour of Code”

Feed That Wolf

The One You Feed is a show I often listen to on my hikes or while doing chores around the house.  It starts with the parable of the two wolves. You know the one. They have great guests and it’s always an interesting conversation.

The guest this week is our friend Kristin Neff, who my wife and I met because of our work at Square Peg Foundation — especially with Autism.

Continue reading “Feed That Wolf”

Square Peg Ranch On TV

For the next few months, our work at Square Peg Ranch is featured on America’s Best Racing and Fox Sports. The first short video in the series was shown today during the horse racing coverage of the United Nations Stakes at Monmouth Park, NJ. Joell and I watched at a local pizza place with some of our families. 

You can watch an extended version of this first video on the America’s Best Racing Website. 

In the video you’ll see several of our kids featured, plus Davis Finch, our Grantwriter who also keeps our horse and lesson records — tracking everything that goes on with the horses, including all training, exercise, injuries, medications and preventive care. (For more information about Square Peg Foundation and our work at Square Peg Ranch, check out our website, SquarePegFoundation.org or reach out directly to me.)

The team at Fox Sports and America’s Best Racing have done a really beautiful job on this video. They were a joy to work with and we’re eagerly looking forward to seeing the rest of the series!

Beware Adults…

Many have heard me say “grownups can suck the fun out of anything”. There’s a lot of history to that insight, for me. And it’s a cornerstone of our teaching philosophy at Square Peg Foundation. So when I saw the latest print from Hugh McLeod at Gaping Void Art, Of course I loved it!

 

That one teacher

I was lucky – I had several. Not all of them were perfect, but each was perfect for me. They made a difference for lots of kids, and for me, they made all the difference.

I was never an easy kid to teach. I was called precocious, which I think was a nice way of saying “pain in the ass.” School was boring and sitting still was impossible. I never got impressive grades, but would test well. If a subject captivated me, I would devour everything I could find about it, but this happened far too infrequently for most teachers.

Except for the few. Each of them found a way to keep me engaged, to expose the fascinating detail of a subject, or bring meaning and relevance to it. Science became a study of the way things work, rather than just facts and formulae. History showed stories of struggle and redemption, rather than just dates and names. Math became shape and motion, rather than anonymous patterns to manipulate with set procedures.

Teachers are not interchangeable parts of a machine. But then again, neither are kids.