#ttww Twitter Welcome Wednesday - "Guidelines"

this post was updated 29 April 2011 



As mentioned at the bottom of a really rather long post regarding the current situation of PLNs or eCoPs, I mentioned that Richard Whiteside of I'd like to think I help peole learn English has had a seriouly awesome, very smart and totally innovative idea:



Let's help the newbie tweeters find other great folks on Twitter!

Helping hands


Here are the "loose" guidelines based on what we hashed out via Skype:


1. Each week look through your new followers and choose one -to five people you  either know personally, professionally or who genuinely look interesting and worth following - folks you think your network might enjoy meeting too.   

As much as possible aim to recommend folks

who have less than 100 followers
or who are newbies
.
As a general rule it's probably best not to recommend those who haven't bothered to add a real photo or listed a bio as they may well be spammers and do be very careful about those who've set their profiles on to "private" as they may not want to be listed publicly - some people truly only want to be connected to 20-50 people. **

2. Follow them back and if you want to, DM for permission to feature them in #WW - it could be rather confusing as a newbie to see your name lit up but not know why.  

3. Send out personalized tweets - not lists - based on what they've written in their profiles.  Add as many relevant hashtags to your tweet to help your PLN determine whether or not to follow them too.

For example, do this
#TTWW welcome @Craig an English Language Teacher based in Dubai, #ELT ~ interested in #dogme and chocolate. #TEFL
#TTWW @Jenny - she's a Teen Fiction author based in Ireland. Open to being interviewed by your students.  #fiction #ireland #education #younglearners
 #TTWW shout out 2 @Bob a good buddy of mine, help me welcome him! - #mlearning evangelist #edublogger and head of #edtech at @UniversityofMiami

But please don't do this:
#TTWW @Jenny @Craig @Bob @June @Alice @TomatoHead @eLearningGuru
 as this is unhelpful to everyone.

If you want to recommend someone with more than 100+ followers, no problem - but how about doing this on #FF or #TT as the goal of this hashtag is to help newbies.
4. Set up a stream for the #hashtags which reflect your own interests within your Twitter client, if you haven't already done so.  Whenever new folks with the same interests you have pop up there on a Wednesday, follow 'em if they sound interesting /you'd like to help them build their own eCommunities of Practice.

But I'd also generally advise that it's probably not worth the bother of watching the #WW stream itself as within the first weeks of this taking off properly, no doubt very soon after that, the salesmen and marketers will move on in.

Let's help Richard and the other folks who want to make this happen! And by the way, have yourself an awesome day, y' hear.
Karenne


**The pros and cons regarding the best size of  a PLN is subjective and based on what you want from being connected with other people.  In my opinion, following less than 100 folks means that you don't get access to enough information to make the Twitter experience worthwhile yet after following around 1000 it starts to become incredibly difficult to filter...and you wind up spending a lot of time creating different streams to catch people's thoughts, musings, blog posts.    There are also those (I sometimes fall into this category) who tweet non-stop and it may look like there's no one else there!  Also, I have to say honestly, that after you start reaching 3000 followers, you can wind up mostly hurting people's feelings because you can no longer see what all your friends are saying  - well, that is unless you're logged in 24/7 and don't have a real life!

Note to Newbies: you can participate in this activity obviously, by RTng the #WW you see in your field of interest and why not share your own new followers with others too but whatever you do, please do not ask someone to feature you in #WW unless, of course, you know them quite well. 

For those of you who are specifically in the field of ELT or interested in edtech and would like to have some suggestions on who to follow, the following lists are my own, but may well serve as a good starting point:





Note to CompanyTweeters:  of course, you can participate in this activity - just keep it about others ~about helping Newbies to Twitter so they can find their way around the 'verse, rather than seeing this as a great opp to discuss your products.  

No doubt, you'll earn you much more respect and 'hits' in the long run rather than if you fill our stream with inanities for a day or so!


Finding out more about Twitter

Resources on PLNs


NOTE: update 31.03.2011 - it turns out that #WW is weight-watchers, wine on wednesday, weddings on wednesday and a bunch of other stuff.  We POLLED folks and wound up with #TTWW

Calling all Educational Bloggers who're on Blogspot

Extrasolar planet WASP-11b/HAT-P-10b

Turkey has put a ban on Google's Blogspot and our readers there are (temporarily) unable to read our posts.

If you're an educational blogger, would you like to join me in circumventing this ruling by becoming a contributor on an emergency Posterous blog?

Here's the site:
http://emergencyblogspace.posterous.com/








Details
If you use blogspot (not EduBlogs, Posterous, WordPress etc) and you would like to keep your Turkish readers in the loop (as no doubt along the merry way of life, they'll be other countries which arise with similar bright ideas) then zap me with a quick Tweet/DM  (or email me at kalinagoenglishblog at googlemail dot com) ~

I'll check out your blog, check that you are a serious blogger* and if you are, I'll make you a contributor. 

Then all you'll have to do is add a "share on posterous button" on your desktop and after posting on your own blog, you can send whole or partial posts to this site so our Turkish readers aren't left out in the cold...

Join me!

Karenne

* No edubloggers with less than 10 articles - sorry, it's not personal, just have to make sure you're not a scam-artist as they do exist
** Obviously if you're an Edublogger in Turkey using Blogspot, just drop me a line.


#WW Welcome Wednesday - New Twitter Hashtag + Musings about PLNs


Disclaimer: this post is not so much just about educational social media best-practices but instead a general comment about social networking overall plus a call to help a few fellow twitterites kick off a movement aimed at helping those new to the medium find other folks.

Yesterday I had a lovely day-off.  I spent it with a friend I've known here for at least seven years.  It was such a different day from the way most of my days have been since the start of this year, not just because I finally took some time off for me (I'm writing a book and consulting an e-company) but because after all this time she let me into one of her secret pleasures...

we went to a field near the airport and we watched planes land.

And this crazy-never-done-before-in-my-life before was one of the best days ever.

Namely because I had no idea that watching planes land from underneath their bellies is awesome fun and some planes are.. in her words... sexy but also because it was so incredibly refreshing to spend time talking about something not related to teaching!

Sometimes living and breathing education... can all be a bit much.

Networked Teacher by Langwitches on Flickr


Today, like a lot of other folks, I've been thinking a lot about personal, professional and online personal/ professional communities.  One of the chief issues which has been niggling at me recently, is about the use of hashtags on Twitter and how often they get taken over and misused.

Sometimes this is only accidentally -

(even I once tried to participate in a twitter edu-group, 
without understanding the rules, 
and wound up upseting someone
who took something I'd linked to -
a bit of a laugh - but instead it was taken personally
which mostly left me thinking "oh, grow up" 
and yet folks... 
I probably was partly in the wrong)


I understand, I do. 


As... let's face it, sometimes hashtags are grossly abused by idjets who jump with joy the very second they see a  new hashtag - seeing it solely as an opportunity to sell or reach as many people as possible with information about their products.
(Good folks normally but they don't know 
even  the basic social-media rules and norms and
god save you if you point this out -
their egos can't take it!).   



It's difficult to say that this is really a no-no no-go area though, because sometimes that information, even when it's just a product pitch, is actually awfully useful but hey, doesn't it make Twitter feel like being stuck in the middle of a great big Moroccan market at times?


It's the nature of the beast, Twitter, being an open platform and all.


And different people are on Twitter for vastly different reasons - sometimes people are excessively territorial about their ideas and hashtag movements because they've um, assumed that all their followers are well, clones of themselves and joined  Twitter for the exact same reason - whatever that may be.  Sometimes folks believe that they've earned the right to do and say what they please because they, um, can.


Sometimes if you dare to criticize something you don't like but that other people do you know the way you'd comfortably complain about x or y without really giving a toss about x or y with your real-life mates then you may well be suddenly flamed for daring to call out, publicly, for saying that crap is crap.  

However those of us with our brains still screwed on know that just because something's created by someone who's as nice as pie,  doesn't make it "good." And just because someone "popular" says something's bad doesn't mean that it is.

Good and Bad, I trust and hope, will always remain subjective.

Yet sometimes I confess I am utterly astounded by how the masses respond to the most unoriginal sound-bite as if it were actually a quote from the Dalai Lama.


"The orange is a round fruit. It can be used to make juice but you can eat it too."

Why, yes. 

Sigh. Cringe.   

And after all, while it may not have been new to me, being fond of oranges and all, it doesn't mean it didn't teach someone else... probably.   I suppose that statement could be considered profound.  But then that's the thing about crowds and wisdom and crowds and their um, how can I be polite, their potential for non-wisdom...     


All part of us being human.  Right?


All a part of the that that makes us special and unique and fun and alive.



On that subject, humanity, one of the reasons a vast number of us - right across the Blogosphere and Twitterverse, those who've been on Twitter for some time, have begun having "existential" crises about the whole only-sunshine+utopia-allowed-here within our online PLN is that it's



not human.   



For many of us, it feels absolutely super to log on whenever you like and be greeted by the wide smiles and hugs of others but for others of us, those with PLNs which are also made up of folks who are not on Facebook or Twitter - the ones who we communicate with regularly face2face and do  real life stuff with - you know like watch videos about deepwater flourescent octopi -  then we also know that, deep down, actually, what makes communities strong is not just our shared laughter and our shared stories but our ability to be there for each other:  when we've been disagreed with, stabbed in the back or when we've been imperfect.




When we're around for the cloudy as well as the fair.

  
chirp?
Chirping may be good for birds  (and digital footprints) but who wants to hang out every single day with folks just making noise.  Not me.  I'm busy.   We know, don't we - from  the experience of actually having real lives that contain real-life friendships too - that folks who pretend to be happy all the time are in fact not; that those who talk non-stop are pretty much just  vampire-airheads; that liars, false prophets and politicians  abound...  and  that those who would you sell you the keys to changing your life for-ever... well they are, wait for it, selling snake oil.  


We also know that gangs and cliques emerge in any new city discovered or settled on - whether we're Bonobo apes or edtech geeks; we know that fierce arguments spring up between folks who've never met each other yet tomorrow they'll turn around and give each other a tip about a great job; that flirting occurs between married folk who should really know better; that there are people who think it's okay to use their "influence" to browbeat you into adding themselves to your blog and when you don't, you're labelled evil; that folks who profess to have excellent critical thinking skills find themselves in situations that cause them to completely lose the ability to rationally think  but instead emotionally react - we watch as they cease to search for truth or meaning, cease to use the vital "why" but instead spread propaganda... like telling thousands a website's closing before verifying the facts, finding out whether or not it's really happening; that bullying goes on right across all of the various platforms - and we also know that the best way to spot these folks is to watch out for their lieutenants because those that bully, no matter their  own pearly white  charm, never ever work alone;   that sometimes we overreact to criticism and name it agression rather than simply take it on the chin and attempt to learn something from that experience; that sometimes narcissm is just that; that ego-stroking and brown-nosing has the ability to spread at almost plague-like proportions  not out of genuine respect but because many people simply look out for only number one;   that normally sane folks can wind up getting their feelings hurt whenever they've not been paid the attention they think they deserve;  that jealousy, cowardly actions, one-upness, greed, sloth and ... whatever the other bad stuff is that exists in all of life... lives amongst us; that solid, potentially life-long friendships can develop out of the inanity of liking  the same book author - a person no one in your local village or even city has ever heard of;  that relationships end or shift in value; that tweepl decide who's worth paying attention to based solely on the numbers of followers they have instead of what they tweet in the space of 140 characters and of course, that rather ill-thought-through judgements made when tipsy can be set in stone forever...

In short, online life is just like real life... 

So why do we pretend it's not?  
Maybe, sigh, we need a Moan on Monday,  #MMs anyone?  
Nah, not really.


Rant aside, the top level of all of that, our humanity ... I think... is that no matter how much crap we all have to live through daily, shocking events which zing at us from nowhere,  suspecting others of the gravest of crimes while being unable to speak out from fear...  the best thing about the things which drive us - is our will to keep on trucking on, communicating and making friends, sharing and loving and learning, it is in fact, having the inbuilt mental agility and ability to help the communities we reside in.






In April 2009, Aniya Adly in Italy came up with the concept of #TeacherTuesday #TT  and that simple idea completely exploded as educators who had previously been entirely unconnected were suddenly able to find each other and talk to each other in real-time.   

The idea moved right across the world, and almost two years later her simple idea which was based on #FollowFriday enabled tens of thousands of educators  to form and participate in what we nowadays generally refer to as our PLNs (Professionl/personal Learning Networks) or  the label I prefer - eCommunities of Practice.

All of this "connectedness" that you see today - the follow-on concepts  which arose -   #edchat, #ellchat #eltchat and all the rest of it - if  it hadn't been for Aniya's call then none of this would have ever come into play and a lot of us would have  probably abandoned Twitter early on or still be left on isolated islands thinking that it was a silly-waste-of-time.
Yet, the reality is that today, for many of us, unfortunately nowadays #TT and #FF are no longer as affective as they once were.

In part because the "marketing folk" moved on in, so there's no point in reading the stream anymore to find other teachers.

Also many of us have already connected with so many other educators and whenever we need folks' sage advice then we pretty much know how to reach them...

The fact is we actually don't need to be recommended ourselves anymore (but thanks guys for having done this, it was always appreciated) and... most of the folks we wind up recommending ourselves to other people are folks which also don't really need to be recommended anymore either!
(Well, unless they're keeping score points or something)

But if you were a newbie, an outsider looking in, then it might all remind you of HighSchool with lots of predefined and impossible-to-break-into cliques.  Cheerleaders, football coaches, chipper girls with blond ponytails and chipper boys in polo shirts and matching boat shoes.

Yeek...
(obviously I was a geek all the way through school... 
"popularity" is not something I take seriously
nor give a shit about,
I got followers... I think,
by just writing a lot about stuff 
people in my field care about). 
I think.

Anyway, wow - this blog post is getting long - it really is time for me get to the point.

We need to fix this...


Enter Richard Whiteside of I'd like to think that I help people learn English who has come up with a brilliant plan for those of us who've been on Twitter a while and who have already developed our PLNs:    



made on Wondersay - Animate text with style
(If you don't have JavaScript the Wondersay reads: let's help our new followers create their own PLNs)


Instead of getting new folks to figure out where the gold is hidden in the mountain (when new they don't even know what #TT #FF means),  instead let's try bringing the gold to them.

Let's help them right from the get go on how to meet other great tweepl.



Richard's idea is to work with a new hashtag: 
#WW - Welcome Wednesday




We had a quick chat on Skype and here's how it'll work:

1. Each week look through your new followers and choose one - five people you  either know personally, professionally or who genuinely look interesting and worth following - folks you think your network might enjoy meeting too.   

As much as possible aim to recommend folks who have less than 100 followers.

As a general rule it's probably best not to recommend those who haven't bothered to add a real photo/ listed a bio as they may well be spammers and do be very careful about those who've set their profiles on to "private" as they may not want to be listed publicly - some people truly only want to be connected to 20-50 people. **


2. Follow them back and if you want to, DM for permission to feature them in #WW   

3. Send out personalized tweets - not lists - based on what they've written in their profiles.  Add as many relevant hashtags to your tweet to help your PLN determine whether or not to follow them too.

For example, do this
#WW welcome @Craig an English Language Teacher based in Dubai, #ELT ~ interested in #dogme and chocolate. #TEFL
#WW @Jenny - she's a Teen Fiction author based in Ireland. Open to being interviewed by your students.  #fiction #ireland #education #younglearners
 #WW shout out 2 @Bob a good buddy of mine, help me welcome him! - #mlearning evangelist #edublogger and head of #edtech at @UniversityofMiami

But please don't do this:
#WW @Jenny @Craig @Bob @June @Alice @TomatoHead @eLearningGuru
 as this is unhelpful to everyone.

4. Set up a stream for the #hashtags which reflect your own interests within your Twitter client, if you haven't already done so.  Whenever new folks with the same interests you have pop up there on a Wednesday, follow 'em if they sound interesting /you'd like to help them build their own eCommunities of Practice.

But I'd also generally advise that it's probably not worth the bother of watching the #WW stream itself as within the first weeks of this taking off properly, no doubt very soon after that, the salesmen and marketers will move on in.


What do you think, shall we use some of our time on Twitter to help others connect?

Best,
Karenne


**The pros and cons regarding the best size of  a PLN is subjective and based on what you want from being connected with other people.  In my opinion, following less than 100 folks means that you don't get access to enough information to make the Twitter experience worthwhile yet after following around 1000 it starts to become incredibly difficult to filter...and you wind up spending a lot of time creating different streams to catch people's thoughts, musings, blog posts and also, I have to say honestly, that after you start reaching 3000 followers, you can wind up mostly hurting people's feelings because you  forget to follow people back (or when they initially followed you they had no bio/photo so you ignored them)... and you can no longer see what all your friends are saying  - well, that is unless you're logged in 24/7 and don't have a real life!


Finding out more Twitter

Resources on PLNs


    The History of English

    Have you ever wondered where our language came from?  The following poem which  I've been asked to post up so very many times... was done as a pechua kucha at IATEFL 2010.  I hope you'll enjoy it:



    The History of English
    Karenne Joy Sylvester
    (cc-sa-nc-nd) 2010


    I'm going to take you on a journey through time
    from the shores of Friesland
    to Norway, Normandy and Ireland.
    Raiding Latin, Greek & French
    adding new words from new worlds
    I'm going to take you on a journey through history
    to tell you the story
    of our global language.


    4000 years ago a movement of people began
    travelling west from India
    crossing Eurasia
    and settling on a cold, wet island.
    But it was not these people
    nor their language which determined English's fate.
    In fact, they left us with few words with which to perpetuate.


    In the fifth century,
    Germanic warrior tribes arrived 
    - like a fury from hell
    divvying up the spoils of the departed Roman Empire,
    battling the Celts for a hundred years.
    In the end,
    it was they who made the language theirs.

    But Rome came back
    this time with a cross instead of spears.
    and the missionaries' alphabet
    unleashed on us
    an intellectual fire
    Random signs and symbols
    suddenly gave us
    voices
    and stories
    histories
    and philosophies
    and pushed our imaginations ever higher.

    It was English's first
    but not its last invader of thought.
    There lies a hidden power in words:
    they create visual maps in the mind
    provide hope, leave memories behind.
    In emotions bought
    they tell where fears are fought
    and lessons taught.

    Just as English
    had come from over the seas
    in the late eighth century, a destroyer gathered his ships
    and armies
    The Viking warriors tore through our manuscripts
    ripping out their jewels
    and in multiple raids
    threatened to wipe out the languages of this age.

    It took a young king -
    Alfred the Great -
    to defeat the Danes.
    He intuitively understood
    Guerrilla tactics are no good
    and set out to teach the English
    English
    sure that unified
    they would flourish
    When Guthrum came again in 878
    the Vikings were made to subjugate.

    But some of them stayed
    to indulge in trade
    leaving us their names in
    towns, villages and valleys.
    Most of all, they caused
    the Great Grammar Shift:
    Word endings fell away
    Word order in disarray
    Prepositions had come to play.

    Although Alfred's victory had saved English
    Harold's defeat almost annihilated it.
    After William was crowned in 1066,
    three centuries of French rule followed:
    their language
    their culture
    English spoken by
    only those under indenture.

    In 1348
    a ship docked in Weymouth.
    On board, the most unlikely savior
    it's cargo
    the deadliest of plagues.
    The rats scurried East
    then North
    killing a third
    of England's population
    Priests, politicians and princes could not be cured.

    Those untouched by the Black Death suddenly had leverage.
    Wages rose.
    Properties fell.
    Serfs moved into farms and abandoned mansions.
    By the late 14th century, English was the language of the classrooms
    appeared before the magistrate,
    when Henry the fourth took his crown
    the home language was finally resurrected,

    yet
    the Bible was still in Latin.
    A philosopher and theologian
    who believed that knowledge belongs to the people
    and not to a religion
    started his translation
    transforming Oxford into
    the most dangerous place in all the nation.

    The Holy Roman Catholic Church
    struck a heavy hand.
    Wycliffe's Bible damned.
    All were banned.
    Were it not for the greatest technological advance of all time:
    The Printing Press.
    Now even God was on English's side.

    A renaissance swept across Europe
    bringing with it
    a tide of immigrant words.
    Zealots arose to protect her
    to keep her pure.

    But language is a woman who knows no master
    and she refused to obey.
    Instead, painting herself in the tapestries of thought
    she gave birth to a honey-tongued bard.
    Shakespeare slammed his words together:
    synonyms and antonyms forever to be wed.

    But darkness lay ahead.
    The American continent conquered,
    the people humbled
    their lands adopted.
    The masters were those of religious philosophies
    which condoned the sacrifice of human dignities.
    Nothing so singularly characterizes English's abilities
    as the absorption of those
    they traded and sold.

    The rise of the novel began to influence our sense and sensibility.
    Suddenly everyone wanted to tell English how to be.
    Dictionaries compiled
    Grammars written
    Coarse words removed
    Body parts forbidden.
    The language of the street
    locked out
    Spelling and pronunciation locked in.
    Telling others of your class
    and the status of your kin.

    But then
    Sound began to travel through the air
    Lights shone brightly
    Nightly
    The industrial revolution
    put Greek and Latin in cahoots
    as new words sprung out from old roots.

    English didn't only look backwards,
    it reached outwards
    Hungry navies trawled the oceans
    from Malaysia to Australia
    bringing home an Empire's devotions
    and... Hong Kong's magic potions.
    After colonization grew globalization.

    And now,
    just as in Alfred's day
    we are united
    by common words recited.
    Through Hollywood, Radio and Television we are delighted.
    Poetry reignited
    by men who make up words to fit their beats -
    the rappers are the Shakespeares of our streets.

    Today we google, text
    we send out tweets.
    We blog and surf on waves
    so there are those who fear
    who think English will disappear
    but
    English is a survivor.
    She is a traveller
    a trader
    a writer
    a poet -

    English is a warrior.


    And if you feel that your students would enjoy reading this and would like to use it in class, here's the link!  The slides, if you'd like to do this as a digital storytelling exercise, can be downloaded from  here.

    Best,
    Karenne



    TED videos for Business English, Part III (Motivation)

    Light
    What gives you your buzz?  Your spark, your joie de vivre?

    Why do we do the things we do?

    Do you know?  Sometimes I think I do, sometimes I think I don't.   The other day I had a fascinating discussion with over 50 global students in the weekly live-chat session I host on MyEC.

    Almost all of them started off by putting money on the top of the list of things that are highly motivational...

    ...yet the more we explored the phenomena, the more we thought through things like the fact that we all come together every week on a Thursday evening even though no one's paid to be there (them or me) and somehow that fact's part of the reason why no matter how busy I am, no matter what else is going on in my life, I turn up...

    and we thought about

    ... things like how people do things for their friends and families unconditionally and how despite that, sometimes they then destroy their favorite people in the whole wide world...

    how

    some people study alone... yet some need a rod, a deadline to meet



    And later on, I started thinking of how people write textbooks for really low advances and royalities...

    some for the reverse

    how people write blogs...   some start them and then some stop them,  some write for years

    ... and about how people cheerfully lose sleep and work their butts off for eduational start-ups with no guarantee of success, just the thrill of potentiality, of upsetting apple-carts... but how most would rather stay locked down within the walls of tradtional institutions...

    It makes you think, doesn't it?

    For many, it's responsibility that determines priority: their children need the clothes on their backs, food in their bellies and a sick parent needs  medicine.   Priorities differ.   For others, the iphone, ipad and flatscreen movie theatre have got to be paid for this month so the next new tech gadget that comes out to market can also get bought.  

    For many, spending time with mates down the pub tops tweeting or working any day...   

    For many, the opportunity to be the sage on the stage is a call way to loud to resist.   And as I mentioned on Harmer's blog, demotivation is an equally fascinating topic because they are, most surely, not always the flip of the same coin.

    We're all such very different people, aren't we?  

    Am willing to bet our/my list didn't even touch your own list, right?  As a person deeply fascinated by beingness and what drives us... I'll say this: anyone who thinks they know the one single motivational factor of any one other person is arrogantly deluding themselves.  

    We are complex.

    We do not know each other. 

    We know each other so incredibly well.

    I'll also, rather arrogantly, suggest that the why of the what we do cannot ever be set down in a pyramid nor carved into tomes for all eternity.  But we sure as heck can have some fun trying to get our fingers on that pulse.

    So, anyway, anyhoo... along with Friday evening musings while I distract myself from the slides I need to write for next week's TESOL Spain... here's a list of my all-time favorite TED videos on motivation.   These can be used to spark off critical-thinking discussions with your adult and almost-adult students!   

    You can use this short YouTube video with Victor Frankl as the intro / backup to a discussion you've been having with your learnes and  get students to individually choose which of the following TEDs they'd like to watch autonomously, reporting on their thoughts later...










    TEDs...

    Why we do what we do (21mins)
    http://www.ted.com/talks/tony_robbins_asks_why_we_do_what_we_do.html

    Tony Robbins makes it his business to know why we do the things we do. The pioneering life coach has spoken to millions of people through his best-selling books and three-day seminars and here discusses the "invisible forces" that motivate everyone's actions.

















    The surprising science of motivation (19mins)
    http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pink_on_motivation.html

    Career analyst Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don't: Traditional rewards aren't always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories -- and maybe, a way forward.


















    The riddle of experience vs. memory (20 mins)
    http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_kahneman_the_riddle_of_experience_vs_memory.html

    Using examples from vacations to colonoscopies, Nobel laureate and founder of behavioral economics Daniel Kahneman reveals how our "experiencing selves" and our "remembering selves" perceive happiness differently. This new insight has profound implications for economics, public policy -- and our own self-awareness.

















    Our mistaken expectations
    http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_gilbert_researches_happiness.html

    Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert says our beliefs about what will make us happy are often wrong -- a premise he supports with intriguing research.  Here he presents data from his exploration of happiness -- sharing some surprising tests and experiments that you can also try on yourself. 















    Why we love + cheat
    http://www.ted.com/talks/helen_fisher_tells_us_why_we_love_cheat.html

    Anthropologist Helen Fisher takes on a tricky topic -- love –- and explains its evolution, its biochemical foundations and its social importance. She closes with a warning about the potential disaster inherent in antidepressant abuse.















    Life at 30,000 feet
    http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/richard_branson_s_life_at_30_000_feet.html 

    Richard Branson talks to TED's Chris Anderson about the ups and the downs of his career, from his multibillionaire success to his multiple near-death experiences -- and reveals some of his (very surprising) motivations.

     











    Which was your favourite?

    CHALLENGE

    Write a lesson plan based on using one or all of these videos (or any other that refers to the subject of motivation) and post this up on your own website or blog.  Alternatively, upload the LP into a document sharing site (e.g scribd/ slideshare/ google docs and let us all know the URL in the comments below.

    See also:
    Part I: TED videos + decision-making 
    Part II: TED videos + success/failure
    Speaking activities for teaching English with TED + other important links
    Best video websites for teaching adult Business English learners

    Other videos discussing motivation:

    What does it mean to "know" a word?

    The other day I was in the middle of a conversation with someone...

    the person I was speaking to suddenly said  

    "then how do you know if someone
    knows something or not?


    The question came because I'd  been ranting that standardized testing was mainly just a test of memory skills or the ability to regurgitate somone else's information without fully understanding it, verifying it for a real truth and that more often than not, tests don't test knowledge.  

    So I deserved this question flying back at me to test my own knowledge.

    Big, deep breath as the flood of everything I've learned or experienced about learning, everything I disagree with and everything, thought-through, everything I've experimented with and found merit in... all these other-people's-ideas jostling around for top priority 
    (pick me! pick me!) 

    ...in the end, leaving me paralyzed and unable to answer.  I mean, if you've ever been there too, you know the dilemma right?   My god, my god: there's literally a theory for everything under the sun when it comes down to pedagogy (and andragogy) and whoa, this trails all the way back to Socrates and beyond.

    I mean what to answer with first? 

    There isn't a one right answer.

    There are many.

    Which probably isn't terribly useful for you... so I should probably leave this post alone except for the fact that my fingers ache from not having blogged for so long and I've gotta share with you - you give me my buzz and keep me thinkin'...


    My life has recently turned into this time-consuming, exciting, brain challenging world 
    of creating e-learning and m-learning products and we 
    (Voxy - I'm their academic consultant, if you missed that update) 
    are radically changing the status quo of language learning autonomously
    ~what we're working on producing next is seriously going to blow your minds :-)


    ...and, actually, I drafted this post out so very long ago and then never published it.

    This is part of the H2LE (How-to-learn-English) posts and is a guide for learners on vocabulary acquistion.   I've been working on it since 2003 and have used it for training teachers on the use of dictionaries in Ecuador and here in Germany use it as a learning-to-learn doc for adult language learners:

    I can cheerfully add that everytime I learn something new, it'll change!



















    • To view in full-screen, see the icon on the right of the black box with slide numbers.
    • To embed it on your own site, click on menu to grab the code.
    • To embed in a Ning or other learning platform save your own copy and upload into the GoogleDocs app.
    • To share this blog post with colleagues, tap on "bookmark" button at the bottom of this post - above the retweet button - and click on the social-networking/envelope/print icon.
    • To send just the document to your students, right click over THIS LINK and select the option to copy the link-address then insert this into an email.

    Useful links:




    But going back to my original opening... 

    What does it mean to know something?

    You know it when you can apply it in a different context, 
    at a different time and place.  
    You know it when you own it.

    Agree?


    As always anything to add or share with me - please do!  If you've written a post or two about this subject, don't hesitate to add the link.

    Karenne
       

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