LGTV 32LD550

This past week my LG TV just froze at the startup screen.  After doing a little research with LG, youtube, and other frustrated customers, I found that the motherboard/circuit board needed repair.  There were various repair shops that wanted my business, but the cost of fixing, the fear of being taken advantage of, and the doubt of extended life were high in my mind.  Consequently, I tried a few things on my own.

The first which seemed logical was to open up the TV and investigate the circuitry.  Now if you have never worked with hardware before then I would not recommend opening up a TV, but because I had some basic experience building a computer and teaching students how to build computers I figured I could at least open it up and look at it.  To my surprise and delight I found that the TV circuit board was in great shape with no signs of burnout.  Consequently, I decided to disconnect all the wires, push a little button that looked like a reset button, and then reconnect the TV.  Upon turning it on again, I realized that did not work.  Sad, angry, and confused, I pushed on.

I kept searching on the web for an answer.  Finally I found what I was looking for at zedic.com ( http://zedic.com/lg-42dl550-fix-repair/ ).  Zedic recommended that baking a board would resolder bad connections.  I thought it was crazy until I read all the responses and researched how other computer hardware gurus had done the same thing with their older motherboards.  It began to make sense as the connections could have cracked or had air pockets.  So as a last resort I reopened the TV, carefully removed the circuit board, wrapped it in tin foil (as not to destroy our oven), baked it following the directions at Zedic, let it cool, inserted it, and then to my surprise everything worked.  I mean it really worked.  I danced, created a rap song, and was able to use my tv again.

Now I don’t know how long it will last, but at least I did not pay an absurd fee to get it repaired and I am extending the value of my original TV which should last longer than four years.  So why am I writing about this on this website called Absolutely Learning?  Well this is exactly the type of learning that needs to happen in our schools.  We need to create problem solving opportunities.  While I am not a fan of LG TV right now for its product, I do think there is something that can be learned in this.  No this is not a good business model, but yes this is a good learning scenario for life.  Absolutely Learning lives on once again.

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Imagine

Students are living in a world where imagination to product is quite a reality.  They are able to think of a script idea and turn it into a movie within days, they can write music, produce it, and publish it in hours, and they can write an article that gets referenced on nightly news in minutes.  The awesome affect of idea to reality is quick.  But is being the first mean being the best?

Obviously not!  Teachers need to teach design, evaluation, collaboration, and redo in their courses.  Students need to learn to evaluate their work, sources, affect on others, and overall quality in their deliverables.  Students need to see what they are creating and ask advice from potential viewers and/or share their music in testing phases to see what their potential audience might like to hear.  Students need to learn to self evaluate, slow down a little, and test their potential markets.  Students need to see what others really want.

While I am not advocating that students stop creating, developing, and producing, I am advocating design, evaluation, testing, and redesign.  There is much potential in a generation that creates great work quickly, but there can also be potential damage to others, history, facts, intentions, relationships, and potential coexistence.  Yes, we need maker spaces, but we also need logical evaluation and design.

Thank You, I am older and wrote this article quickly based upon experiences, past classes, and gained knowledge.  If you don’t approve of these writings then why are you still reading?

July 2nd – John Adams – What a brilliant failure?

With great enthusiasm for the event and an accurate understanding for the significance of the event, John Adams wrote that the July 2, 1776 approval for independence would be celebrated for years to come.  Off by two simple days, many might call this a failure.  However, I tend to view this proclamation to his wife as a clear understanding of the times and a brilliant prediction.  I also think he continued on as a great reminder of what America would become.  I think he was successful.

So then why do we continue in education to look for the discrete facts and tiny moments to evaluate success?  Why are we so involved with demonstrable test taking and fact memorization?  Is that what the future world needs from its workforce?  Is that where innovation begins?  Is this what the world is going to remember?  Do your most successful leaders have 4.0 or higher?

I think we need to find ways to incorporate project based learning into the classroom.  I think we need to lessen the rigorous approach to test taking.  I think we need to design projects that increase skills that are defined by the workforce.  Finding the right answer, reaching a consensus on the right answer,  debating an approach, presenting the circumstances around that answer, and evaluating your success in communicating the answer are much better predictors of success.

So to my ISTE 2015 friends, I am sorry that I went to Philadelphia two weeks prior to the conference, and I was unable to participate in the demonstration of project based learning through technologies. You might call that a failure since I missed it by two weeks. However, as I am listening to the great presentations and feedback you gave on YouTube, I sense that I am a small part of a growing movement.  I predict one day we will have digital learning that analyzes skills rather than content and produces wonderful citizens rather than “know it alls”.  Ouch, Happy Independence Day!

FAIL SPACE

Wow, as I reflect over the past year, I find that I have missed many goals.  One is obviously that I did not update Zoombla over the winter break, and another is that I have somehow left this blog absent of good thought, advice, and personal experiences.  So why or why not should you continue reading . . . .

Because FAIL SPACE is important.  How we educate today is so dependent upon personalized learning environments where students can create, test, fail, and make better.  There is so much brain research that supports that when we struggle and rebuild we are building skills that are life long learning needs that will help is in any endeavor.  Consequently, we need classrooms that support project based learning, flexible design, group collaboration, making, designing, and presenting.  We need to place process over content, and we will find that students thrive, are more engaged, and take the redesign and editing phase as a game level to do better.  Students actually do like to break something and then figure out how to make it better or design, test it, and fix it.

So yes, I have failed you, my readers, in many ways this past year in the sense of content predictability, and while I have been engaged in large projects such as faculty development, the online educational initiative, student orientations, two learning systems management, and course review, I have failed this blog.  (or have I?)  However, you must also know that in my desire to fix, rebuild, create, and maintain this blog that I have simply written this post with gusto, in a quick manner, and with total belief in the success of FAIL SPACEs for the modern learner and, of course, me.

Winter Break Challenge – Zoombla 2.0

About a year ago I created my first app for the iPhone and as I am reviewing my notes I realize that I missed some of the updates that I promised.  I am also getting messages from Apple that I should think about upgrading my app to work on newer iOS platforms such as iOS8.  I am writing you to make you aware of my Winter Break Challenge as I float into the holiday season, and I wanted to make you aware of it to keep my plans honest, transparent, and accountable.  Consequently, I will update Zoombla to Zoombla 2.0 for the die hard fans.  It will be free to you, and I hope we gain a new audience so you can continue playing your math game with family, friends, and maybe one day new acquaintances.  Thanks for all of your support of my apps this year.  2014 has been an amazing year.  I will publish again when it is done.  At the moment it looks like it will be a SpriteKit App as I am really enjoying the added user interface of the SpriteKit platform.

Webinar for Veteran’s Day Theme

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

edWeb.net to host a webinar with Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient Clint Romesha

PRINCETON, NJ, October 28, 2014 – edWeb.net and the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation (CMOHF) will present a special live webinar, “Heroism in the War on Terror: An Interview with Clint Romesha, Medal of Honor Recipient,” on Tuesday, Nov. 4 at 1 p.m. Eastern Time.

Teachers are invited to bring their students and their questions as they listen to Medal of Honor Recipient, Clinton L. Romesha, Staff Sergeant Bravo Troop, 3rd Squadron 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

Staff Sergeant Clint Romesha was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in the October 3, 2009 battle at Outpost Keating in the Nuristan Province of Afghanistan. Five years later, in this interview with Medal of Honor Foundation President Ron Rand, Romesha will reflect on that day and the direction his life has taken since.

Now a working civilian, husband, father, and one of the youngest of the 79 living Medal of Honor recipients, Romesha dedicates some of his precious free time to sharing his story with teachers and students. During this webinar, he will take questions from the audience and share his thoughts on his experiences.

To join this important event, teachers can register here. Teachers are encouraged to submit a question from their students for Mr. Romesha.

Lisa Schmucki, the founder and CEO of edWeb.net, commented, “This is a very special honor to host an online community where recipients of the Medal of Honor can speak directly to teachers and students about their experiences and the values of bravery, commitment, and self-sacrifice.”

edWeb.net and the CMOHF have created an online professional learning community that is free and will host webinars and online discussions on the important concepts of courage, commitment, sacrifice, patriotism, integrity and citizenship. The webinars will provide an opportunity for Medal of Honor Recipients to discuss the importance of character and speak directly with teachers and students on their experiences. The webinars will be facilitated by an educator from the Medal of Honor Foundation and will include demonstrations on how to use the curriculum in the classroom.

If you are an educator, join the free learning community, Lessons of Personal Bravery and Self-Sacrifice: The Medal of Honor Character Development Program, to stay informed about upcoming webinars, join in on discussions with peers and experts, and gain access to valuable resources.

For more information, contact: 

Jenifer Morack, Program Development, edWeb.net
609-439-8103 | jenifer@edweb.net

Cathy Metcalf, Vice President, Education, Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation
714-609-4996 | cmetcalf@cmohfoundation.org

Hour of Code

Although I have been busy with a new position in instructional design for online education at a community college, I want to continue to add educational technology posts at this site and keep you posted of great ideas out there.  As a part time developer of educational apps for the iPad and iPhone (iOS platform) and as a coder of Objective C, SpriteKit, Cocoa Touch, and many other Frameworks, it would not have been possible to have released my apps on the App Store at Apple without studying computer programming. There are many applications of computer programming in today’s world as you will see in the video.  I hope this Hour of Code Video inspires you to consider using their materials in your classroom or at the very least to promote these services to your students.