The Hanging Indent: December 12, 2015



Every Saturday/Sunday morning in the multimodal, #digiwrimo spirit, I net my week’s catch of interests and broadcast my signal to you.  Yes, I am the fishmonger of ideas and media. I am not sure whether that is just more added more smell than the lord allows, yet here it is.

Music I’m Listening To — It’s been a year of losses for music, forever losses: BB King, Allen Toussaint, Ornette Colman, souls singers Percy Sledge and Ben E. King and on the British side pop icons Cilla Black, Errol Brown, Steve Strange. And so much more around the world.

In honor of them all here is Allen Toussaint’s “Who’s Gonna Help Brother Get Further”.  Gotta love anybody who could with such ease rhyme “brother” and “further”.  Even better just find a YouTube video for any of our lost brothers and sisters, then….let ’em play all morning one after the other in their honor.


Videos I’m Watching —  I am always looking for videos to grab to turn into animated gifs.  Here is an educational video from the 50’s on classroom discipline that really got me going. You can click on them below and use as you will.  I just like making them. And it is scarily similar to my own schooling.

Couldn’t miss out on sharing this John Cleese video again.  Creativity defined and refined.  This is a classic example of a metacognitive presentation where Cleese is being creative while defining how to be creative.  Wow. And does Cleese describe this capacity?  It is the ability to play and create an environment to play in.

Articles I’m Jonesin’ On — Daniel Bassill, community organizer extraordinaire,  sent me a beefy white paper from Deloitte University Press by authors John Hagel III, John Seely Brown, Alok Ranjan & Daniel Byler, titled “Passion at work: Cultivating worker passion as a cornerstone of talent development”.  I am reading this very slowly (you can join me if you wish) and carefully because of a gut feeling I have that it points to a different direction for me in my teaching work.

Website I Am Also Jonesin’ On — I am a longtime reader and fan of Harold Jarche’s work and website.  I use his simple knowledge capture mantra, Seek-Sense-Share, in my own working life and with my composition students.  His latest post is about the nature of learning in the new “platform capital economy”.  He argues,

We are entering a post-job economy. Our careers will be shorter as our lives get longer. Companies and institutions are no longer the stable source of employment they once were. The structures we create now to shift society to a post-job economy will determine how much turmoil the transition will create. Now is the time to construct better ways to distribute the wealth of the network era.

My question is: what role do teachers have in making the future more equitable and more evenly distributed?  I argue that the word ‘teacher’ no longer fits what we must do.  In fact it is not monikers that we need.  It is stories that will guide us much like the myth of the American Dream had.

Book I’m Living With — I’m reading  Yes, and… :how improvisation reverses ‘no, but’ thinking and improves creativity and collaboration.

Goodreads has a mixed but generally positive set of reviews. Takeaways include this credo near the end and the chapter on the ‘uses of failure’. I know I will be writing more on my blog about applying the credo above to my classes. Winter break is when I become a learning Viking.

Quote — “Understanding your network is first step toward mobilizing it for any purpose. “–Daniel Bassill

What I’m watching/hearing — Jonesin’ on some participatory kultur with colleagues Maha Abdelmoneim and Kevin Hodgson (and I hope you as well) as we gear up for our ‘choral’ reading of Jenkins,Ito, and boyd’s Participatory Culture in a Networked Era. Below is a VoiceThread we are using to share a close read of the first chapter, “Defining Participatory Culture”.


What I’m selling — This was lambing week.  We sold about a ton of lambs to market.  Here are some pictures of my day.

Not included is the weeping I do in the parking lot afterwards as the many pay the piper for the few and America has to eat. No hatehs, please.




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