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Archive | Education

DOLLAR: Documentary Sheds Light on Common Core

By having central government bureaucrats dictate how, what and why students learn, the innovation, entrepreneurship, and diversity of a “grass roots” education (i.e., Montessori, i.e., Home Schooling) — where education is tailored to the needs of the student as directed by the parent — will be eliminated. This is the key political argument against the so-called “common core” initiative.

In “Building the Machine” viewers receive a “big picture” overview of the Common Core States Standards Initiative (CCSSI) and its effects on their children’s education. “Building the Machine” compiles interviews from leading educational experts, including members of the Common Core Validation Committee. Find out more about the Common Core: http://www.hslda.org/CommonCore

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David Allen: Five Things To Optimize your Focus

According to David Allen in When Office Technology Overwhelms, Get Organized we need “a system that creates space to think, to reflect, to review, to integrate and to connect dots” to put ourselves into “a productive state — the feeling that you’re doing exactly what you should be doing, with a sense of relaxed and focused control?” This allows us to sort out the “chaos of the workplace” and stay “focused on the most important things, as they relate to your goals, direction, values and desired outcomes. You must constantly recalibrate your resources to generate the best results, and to say “not now” to what’s less important.” However points out Allen, we must learn how to do this by following a “sequence of five events to optimize your focus and resources“:

Capture everything that has your attention, in your work and your personal life, in writing. Maybe it’s your departmental budget, a meeting with the new boss, an overdue vacation, or just the need to buy new tires and a jar of mayonnaise. For the typical professional, it can take one to six hours to “empty the attic” of your head. It may seem daunting, but this exercise invariably leads to greater focus and control.

Clarify what each item means to you. Decide what results you want and what actions — if any — are required. If you simply make a list and stop there, without putting the items in context, you’ll be stuck in the territory of compulsive list-making, which ultimately won’t relieve the pressure. What’s the next action when it comes to your budget? The next step in arranging your vacation? Applying this simple but rigorous model puts you in the driver’s seat; otherwise, your lists will hold your psyche hostage. And keep in mind that much progress can be made and stress relieved by applying the magic two-minute rule — that any action that can be finished in two minutes should be done in the moment.

Organize reminders of your resulting to-do lists — for the e-mails you need to send, the phone calls you need to make, the meetings you need to arrange, the at-home tasks you need to complete. Park the inventory of all your projects in a convenient place.

Regularly review and reflect on the whole inventory of your commitments and interests, and bring it up to date. As your needs change, what can move to the front burner, and what can go further back? Make these decisions while considering your overall principles, goals and accountabilities. Schedule a two-hour, weekly operational review, allowing space to clean up, catch up and do some reflective overseeing of the landscape, for all work and personal goals, commitments and activities.

• Finally, deploy your attention and resources appropriately.

Remarks Allen, “I have never seen anyone apply these practices, with some degree of commitment and application, and not find significant improvement in focus, control and results. The technology, the organizational goals, the quirkiness and turbulence of external realities — these become things to manage, not a hoped-for source of productivity itself.”

Read the full article.

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New York City Objectivist Mini Conference — November 4, 5, 6

The New York Objectivist Society has announced a weekend mini-conference in New York City for the first weekend in November. Early discount deadline is September 25.

The events begin with a fundraising dinner for the Ayn Rand Institute on Friday November 4, 2011. This will be followed by two full days of lectures on Saturday and Sunday November 5 and 6, 2011. Saturday and Sunday attendees will be immersed in an intellectual universe created by some of the best minds in their respective fields:

  • Andrew Bernstein will speak on “Villainy: An Analysis of the Nature of Evil.”
  • Harry Binswanger will speak on “Psycho-Epistemology: How the Mind Operates the Subconscious.”
  • Yaron Brook will speak on “Ayn Rand’s Free market Revolution: How the Ideas of Atlas Shrugged Can End Big Government.”
  • Eric Daniels will speak on “The Virtue of Judicial Engagement.”
  • Shoshana Milgram will speak on “Ayn Rand’s Top Secret: An Inspiring Original Screenplay about the Development of the Atomic Bomb.”
  • Jean Moroney will speak on “How Understanding Your Emotions Helps You Think Logically.”

The event will be held at the InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel (111 E. 48th St.).

Full details including lecture descriptions are at:
http://www.newyorkobjectivistsociety.org/www.newyorkobjectivistsociety.org/NYOS_Conference_2011.html

To enroll, first RSVP by sending an email to info@newyorkobjectivistsociety.org. Your next step will be to send a check made to New York Objectivist Society, Inc. Cost before September 25, 2011 is $500. After September 25, 2011 the price goes up to $600, based on availability. All payments will be due by October 15, 2011.

NYOS CONFERENCE 2011
InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel
November 4,5,6, 2011
$500 if paid by September 25, 2011
$600 if paid after September 25 but by October 15, subject to availability.

RSVP to: info@newyorkobjectivistsociety.org
Make your check payable to: New York Objectivist Society, Inc.
Mail it to:

NYOS c/o A. Benlian
P.O. Box 939
Bronxville, NY 10708

Again, full details including lecture descriptions are at:
http://www.newyorkobjectivistsociety.org/www.newyorkobjectivistsociety.org/NYOS_Conference_2011.html

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Thinking Tactics Workshops in Washington DC (5/7), New York (5/14), and Ft. Lauderdale (7/9)

 Jean Moroney has announced she will give her workshops on Thinking Tactics in several cities in the upcoming months:

  • Washington DC Area, Saturday, May 7, 2011 ($100 early-bird discount ends March 25)
  • New York City, Saturday, May 14, 2011 ($100 early-bird discount ends March 25)
  • Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Saturday, July 7, 2011 ($100 early-bird discount ends May 1)

Thinking Tactics offers attendees a mental toolkit for tapping their own knowledge banks to solve problems faster, make better decisions, and communicate more effectively. During class, everyone test drives the tactics on their own issues.

The course is targeted to a general professional audience of “knowledge workers”–people who think for a living, such as managers, entrepreneurs, writers, and engineers. Objectivists interested in psycho-epistemology find the class particularly interesting, as all the teachings derive from the Objectivist view of the relationship of the conscious mind to the automatic functions of the subconscious.

Ms. Moroney is a graduate of the Objectivist Graduate Center’s full-time, 2-year program (1996). Details on the course and registration information are at: http://www.thinkingtactics.com

8-page brochure: http://thinkingdirections.com/TTBrochureSpring2011.pdf

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Part 2 of Lisa VanDamme’s Response to “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior”

Lisa VanDamme takes the Wall Street Journal Article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” to task methodologically, exposing that it is premised on a false dichotomy. Is our choice only to be high-handed or hands-off? Domineering or deadbeat? Abusive or permissive? Or is there another alternative?

Click here for the first video: Lisa VanDamme Slams WSJ Article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior”, Part 1

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Lisa VanDamme Slams WSJ Article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior”

Lisa runs the VanDamme Academy, a private school that provides a quality private education for elementary and middle school students, with a Montessori environment for 5 to 7- year – olds. This is the first of several videos in which Lisa VanDamme shares her thoughts about the Wall Street Journal Article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior.”In this video, Miss VanDamme implores listeners to consider the question on which the whole issue depends: By what standard do we say a child is “successful”?

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WOW! You can read some of her CapMag articles here. You can visit Lisa’s video blog here.

UPDATE: See Part 2 here where Lisa answers the critics of Part 1.

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