A varied and sometimes erratic record of what I'm learning inside and outside of the classroom

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A Pause In Prevention of Cranial Explosion

There's a great line in the movie Ever After, when Prince Henry says (in a British-sounding accent, oddly, even though the story is set in France):

"I used to think that if I cared about anything, I'd have to care about everything, and I'd go stark raving MAD."

I'm beginning to see what he was talking about.

This digital civilization class I'm taking challenges me every single day to break free from my perceptions of how I think about learning. The class is structured to put us in charge of our own learning experience; we have more leeway as far as what we choose to research, and the methods of sharing what we learn are somewhat unconventional, involving multiple technological tools. I feel like I'm standing on the shore of this vast ocean of information that I possibly could use, whereas before, in other classes, I only had a little glass of the water from the fountain of knowledge to absorb. And it has been a bit difficult for me not to think in terms of the little glass even as I'm confronted with the ocean. That's the part when I feel like I'm going crazy because I think I have to go through ALL this information, and there's just too much.

Time for a paradigm shift, Ariel.

Today in class we talked about how the Renaissance humanists revered language, recognizing that unlocking its secrets releases new and powerful modes of expression. Well, I'm learning a new language in my quest to become digitally literate, and I'm sure that doing so will bring immeasurable benefit in the technological world we live in now. I just need the courage to let go of my old perceptions and dive in.


  1. I agree that it can be overwhelming, but the great part about this class is that we get to decide what is important or not, relevant or not, interesting or not. What power that gives us as students!

  2. I wrote about this very thing on my blog, and our professors on theirs. Basically it's yet another instance of the cliché, "With great power comes great responsibility." The more freedom you have, the more you have to think for yourself. Personally, I like both freedom and independent thinking much more than their opposites, but I do have to admit, it's definitely a big paradigm shift like you said.