Archive for March, 2013

Have you noticed your teacher standing in front of the class and lecturing continuously for long periods of time while you, the student, begin to grow bored and lose the ability to focus or retain any of the knowledge that is being imparted? Does your teacher grow angry and heap useless and damaging amounts of psychological torment on you while your brain, starved of stimulation, attempts to learn something else from your surroundings? Does your teacher reward students who are willing to lifelessly stare straight ahead of themselves, unmindful of the serious psychological damage that can come from non-interactive learning? Perhaps your teacher suffers from a common illness that is devastating our classrooms and causing students to hate learning. This disorder is called ARD, or Attention Requirement Disorder.

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I feel like this guy. On the right, that is.
–from http://assets.fundoofun.com/bollywood

Once you have diagnosed your teacher as having this unfortunate malady, beware that you might not be taken seriously by professionals. The reason your teacher has developed this behavioral disorder is because it is quite probable that s/he has been rewarded in the past for tolerating and accepting attention requirement as a legitimate teaching method. As with Attention Deficit Disorder, this affliction is behavioral. Once the victim of this disease has been diagnosed, the bulk of the treatment must be behavioral. Drugs should only be prescribed as a final remedy, but know that prescriptions do not solve the problem in the long term.

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Notable ARD victim, Mr. Snape. Class, say hi to your new chemistry teacher.
–from http://img.moviesunlimited.biz/

It has been speculated that media such as video games, graphic novels and high-intensity action films have contributed to ADD by splitting the mind’s attention, creating rapid response reflexes and destroying its ability to concentrate. Think about this for a moment. We’re making the argument here that modern technological and creative advancements have sped up the brain’s functions beyond the point that they can be considered productive. Does this mean our brains are failing, or that our idea of “being productive” is problematic? I do not recommend that we bring video games into the classroom. I simply suggest that we work WITH cultural and technological advancement rather than working AGAINST it. Big businesses in video gaming are profiting from an increase in human brain activity. Why can education not benefit from this discovery as well?

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No, I did not write this article just to make use of my extensive collection of sexy teacher pictures. Heh-heh…
–from http://pcdn.500px.net

The best behavioral treatment for ARD is the following. We must begin by becoming teachers to attack ARD at the root. We must plan interesting activities that stimulate thought. We must as teachers keep our introductions short and our interactions with students relevant. Here’s why: If students turn into zombies, simply watching, listening and taking notes, we as teachers will be quite easily replaced with television screens and robots. There’s no perceptual difference between a teacher suffering from ARD and a robot. Not to students. If you want to keep your job, you will follow these simple steps:

1) Prepare. Have a bag of tricks at your disposal at all times so that if your introduction is not effective, you can switch gears.

2) Interact. Make groups with your students and give them a relevant activity. Visit each group to keep them on track. This is possible with a classroom of up to thirty students (six groups of five students each), but anything past that is difficult and ineffective. Therefore, lobby your education board for smaller class sizes.

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I love teachers who love teaching. Doesn’t everyone?
— from http://marvelousmisadventures.typepad.com

3) Focus on topic-changing minds, specifically. If you’ve noticed that some students have a hard time staying on topic, it is possible that they exhibit characteristics of ADD. That said, attention levels naturally vary, and the benefit of giving increased attention to unfocused students is monumental both for them as individuals and for our future society at large. Before we rush to involve clinical psychologists in our affairs, let’s try the behavioral approach, which begins in the classroom.

4)  Stop talking about bad students. Realistically, a truly bad student is a violent one. Students who cannot keep from speaking up in class, or are more interested in cell phone video games, are not bad. Unfocused, perhaps. Uninterested, certainly. Here’s the thing: Teachers must get past their hurt feelings and take proactive steps to give students a reason to pay attention. “Because I said so” is not a good reason. If we mistake compliance for morality, we need only scan a history textbook to find out exactly how ethical compliant societies in the past have been.

When you spot ARD, consider that the sufferer of this common disorder has feelings, and those feelings can easily be hurt. Do not rush to bring their disorder to their attention. Simply try to understand this menacing affliction and do your best to help your fellow students who may not understand why their teacher is behaving in such an erratic and undisciplined way. Forming study groups with your fellow students will both allow you to retain the material your teacher could not effectively explain, and also give you a chance to discuss how you are responding to your teacher’s disorder. Besides that, the teacher will get the impression that you are fantastic students, which in reality, was true all along.

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Surely, men made of plastic can’t be hurt. from http://i01.i.aliimg.com

She must have been walking for hours when she passed Davies and saw that the Hastings Inc warehouse was clearing out. Among the discards was a brilliant model, a mannequin. The blinding white man stared lifelessly out through Greek god eyes. She waited silently behind sunglasses, hiding behind a pillar until the workers left. Quitting time came and she snuck past the wire fence. She snatched the body and quickly hailed a cab. There she sat beside the six-foot android, not paying attention to the taxi driver’s askance glances. I’m an artist, she said with her eyes before ascending the hill to her apartment building, the plastic man tucked securely under her arm.

He could not freely stand, so she leaned him upright in the corner. She started to think of what kind of art project she could do with him. Over the next few weeks, his forward-staring plastic body inspired all sorts of thoughts. She poured these thoughts into her writing, photography and dance. Angel wings, she thought. Black angel wings and tattoos. Tribal. Yessss…

One day she saw that he was starting to fall over. She rushed over and blocked him from falling. His body twisted into her grasp, and she realized how wrong it seemed that she was pressing his white body against the wall, her lips so close to pushing against his. She jerked back suddenly and let him fall back into the wall. No. Dear god no.

That’s when she saw it. There before her eyes was a tiny chip between his lips. She picked at it. The paint came off easily enough. She revealed his real color. He was actually a beautiful dark olive color under layers of white paint. She ran to her kitchen and grabbed a knife. Bit by bit she picked away until she had uncovered his entire face. She chipped paint all the way down his neck, over his chest and torso, past his hips and down his legs. He was mostly flesh now, except for a stripe of white on each inner thigh.

She had worked so hard to get the paint off, but these two strips just weren’t coming clean. She picked and pulled. They were fused into his flesh. She got worked up. It was the kind of frenzy that had pushed everyone out of her life and left her alone with her art all these years. Her obsessive fury did not stop until she had dug her knife deep into the flesh of his thigh. Breathing heavily now, she collapsed on the floor. What have I done?

This was a mistake. She never should have gotten involved. Now she had invested herself into something that would never reach its completion. Furthermore, she had dug deeply into the plastic man a scar that could never heal. She considered just leaving him on the street and abandoning this foolish pursuit. She decided instead to dissolve her stresses in an aimless walk.

She descended her stairs and walked out into the cool air. Soon, she happened upon a stationery store. She walked in, unsure of why. She looked at oil pastels, which she could afford with her last four dollars. Then she saw something else: a nice little kit of whittling tools. She bought the kit and ran her purchase back up to her apartment.

There was the Greek god, staring blankly into the wall. She dropped to her knees and scraped away the paint stripes from his thighs. She looked at the deep scar. She knew that there was nothing she could do. The scar would always be there. She decided then that he would be there to remind her of the consequences of acting with haste. She clothed him in vermilion and midnight blue. She painted on his tattoos and never tried to fix his scar. She gave him dark wings, and when the work was complete, she smiled, and a tear crept down her face. She turned out her dim light.

Goodnight, sweet god.