Thursday, February 20, 2014

There is no them…only us

This is important.  Listen and imprint it on whatever you are setting out to do.  You have got to take the steps.  Remember….Small Steps Go Places.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Going back to the core

I am sitting in Ann Arbor smiling as I hear the Bell Tower toll.

 I LOVE this place.  I lived here for ten years when I was younger and much of who I am was developed here.  It is good to return to that core place and measure what has happened.

The past few days have been a trip like that.  And, I can feel that I took a jump of sorts.
  I guess there has to be a lot of working and weeding,
 and thinking before taking a leap.

I am so excited that I decided to begin working with Alisa, who is now my career coach.  Alisa brings a huge bolt of energy to what I have been working on for so long.  I feel that finally someone is taking me seriously.  I do not know if I will be financially successful.  I hope I am.  But, when I tell people about my games it come from someplace deep inside.  And, I realize that not everyone is a good fit or will appreciate what I am doing, so I shouldn't try to convince them of my worth or the worth of my work.  There is a great deal of freedom in that.

Different people approach tackling problems or learning in different ways --- based on who they are.
(Da, isn't this how I think?)  So, I approach things in my way.  Hence, my games are my take on what a person needs to know before making a decision about college.  And, I focus on "young" people because this is the group I have worked with the most, so far.

Maybe I have found a name for the game I brought with me:  RISK IT.  That name speaks volumes.  And, I am so excited that my game spinners arrived and it was easy to come up with a paradigm.  Aha! Paradigm…now there is a word.

RISK IT asks player to use the spinner to find two parameters which leads to a scenario which leads to deciding how much of a risk to take.

Examples of scenarios are:  Your roommate gets up for class earlier than you and always wakes you up because he/she makes noise while getting ready to go to class.  So much for having a 10am class!

Your favorite class and major interest has always been Literature.  Now you are in your first college English class, which you love.  You have worked hard on your first paper and think you turned in a pretty good product.  Today you got your paper back.  There was a big D on the top.  You really worked hard and do not understand what went so terribly wrong!

These are real scenarios compliments of a fabulous college student named Lucy.  Real to me means relevant.

Would you, as a player, risk asking your roommate to get dressed in the bathroom, or would you buy yourself earplugs,

or just tough it out?  Would you even mention the situation?

Would you, as a player, just accept that D and seek solace in complaining about how tough the professor is, or would you take the paper and what is left of your ego and go have a long conversation about it with the prof and possibly a tutor?

So, now I am going to go back outside, to the 10 degree weather and attempt to get to lunch with two wonderful women without my smile freezing.  I am enjoying going back to my core today.

I would highly recommend it!

A Harlan added BONUS!

You don't have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.

It is the new year and I have been struggling to come up with the "right" post.  Ha, ha, ha…there is no right post.

I have hired a career coach. Wow, that was an amazing move.  It means I have taken myself seriously, and invested in what I am doing. I have researched and invented but my game has not flown off the table.  Now, after a couple of months with Alisa, I have four games which may join into one experience.  I am moving toward a focus group for each and asking myself if I need full prototypes or partial prototypes to offer to teenagers in the focus groups.  I want to know what works and I want to see what's on the other side.  I am taking STEPS.  I just reposted something a friend, R-J Houston quoted from Dr. King:

 "You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step." - Martin Luther King

I truly believe that education is powerful

if the student is fully engaged in the experience.

And, the games put the power of observation and possibility into the hands of the players.  And, I truly believe that to make a successful learning plan one must take a look at who they are as a person and choose accordingly.  More skills can be mastered and interests investigated, but you come with a package and why not assess it, appreciate it and use it to take that first step?very evident that the "product" we were offering wouldn't work for students who couldn't or wouldn't play by the rules of the co-op.  That didn't mean they were bad students or dumb or any of the other labels that get fixed to students.  It meant that the product we were offering came with instructions that needed to be followed to use our way of doing things.  So, our way learning did not work for everyone.  And, so it is with making decisions about going to college.  Some students don't need to assess who they are as people, or what they are drawn to.  Some students already have a picture in their minds of where they want to go and why.  However, some students may find the description they have for their search can be enlarged or changed by being honest with themselves about who they are and what they are willing to be capable of.

It is difficult to accept that one (being me) does not have an answer for everyone.  Ouch!!

It is satisfying to know that one (being me) does have something that is valuable to some people.  Yeaa!