Giving the LMS a chance

I haven’t been shy over the years in criticizing the LMS. Students have consistently told me to stick with my website instead. Downside: they can’t see their grade up-to-the-minute. Upside: it’s organized to make it simple and easy to use. Plus all the stuff I’ve mentioned before (openness, availability outside semesters, etc.) Still, my critique […]

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LEGO FSEM redux

Last year I developed and taught a new LEGO-themed freshman seminar. Turns out I’ll be teaching it again this coming fall, so I have added motivation to take a critical look at successes and failures of my new course. While I don’t want to dwell on failures, fact is I made a big gamble in […]

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Time-proven faves

A couple years ago, when I started blogging, I reviewed a few apps I use to stay as paperless as possible. I think it’s time to revisit them: the technology has changed quite a bit since then and so have (some of) my habits. Some apps I’ve replaced altogether. For instance, I used to have […]

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Immediate face plant

This whole “I don’t need my computer” thing sounded so easy. It only took a day to make it clear I’m delusional. Not that I couldn’t have done my work on the iPad – I could have – but just that it was so much easier to get it done on the computer I couldn’t […]

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A necessary experiment 

For the past few months, my computer has been unbearably – almost unuseably – slow. I have a couple ideas why that is: 1- I was warned by my colleague before moving to my current office that it has very slow ethernet. 2- the $@^%@$% antivirus UMW insists I must have on my computer even […]

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Learning by Making

It’s summer break, which means that while I want to be productive, I also want to have fun. This last week, I managed to bring together work and leisure and thought I’d share. I’m currently working on developing assignments for the new LEGO FSEM, and this last week I also moved into my new office […]

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And sometimes you have to be willing to Godzilla the city to the ground.

Over the past 18 months or so I’ve methodically worked up to my new LEGO FSEM. I started with just the idea and then went forward with everything I’ve mentioned in the “building a syllabus” series: figuring out topics, researching literature, developing assignments… The added wrinkle this time around was making sure I had the […]

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Easy iOS storage

A few weeks ago I wrote about a gadget that just didn’t cut it for me, the livescribe pen. Well in case you think I just hate all new toys, here’s a counter example.  In contrast to the high hopes I had for the livescribe pen to change – or at least supplement – my […]

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Arc and Episode

This post is the third in my “how to build a course” series. Today I’m going to discuss thematic concepts, and to do so I’m going to switch up my metaphor from the puzzle to tv shows. It’ll make sense, I promise. Some shows find incredible success with an episodic format. Others are all about […]

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