Thursday, January 19

Today is Thursday of WEEK 1. Thank you for all the Introduction and Story posts yesterday; it was exciting to watch all the posts popping up! Today you will get into some of the specific information about the course content and readings. Here is a link to the Orientation assignments.

Update: The Blog Comment Groups for Week 1 are ready to go! :-)

Class Procedures and Reminders

Wednesday grace period. If you did not finish the Wednesday assignments last night, there is the usual Canvas grace period until noon today. Please make sure you finish your story and introduction posts by noon so that I can put you into a blog group (see next item).

Blog groups. After the noon deadline today, I'll be able to put people into blog groups so that you can start reading and commenting on each other's posts. Each week, I set up the blog groups as soon as I can on Thursday so that you have at least part of Thursday, plus all day Friday and the weekend to do your blog comments. I'll update the announcements when the blog groups are ready this afternoon.

My comments. I ended up having to spend most of Wednesday with administrivia of various kinds, but I should have a lot of time to comment on blogs today. I probably won't be able to finish all the Introduction posts this week, but soon you will be getting comments from other students in the class about your Introductions and the stories. Meanwhile, I'll be able to finish commenting on everybody's blog posts either this week or next. And thank you again for all your good work on those blog posts!

The following items are for fun and exploration:

Learning about Learning. As you get ready to start visiting each other's blogs, I wanted to share with you an infographic that explains how this course is an example of an approach to education called Connected Learning:

Reading. Here is a thought to keep in mind as you explore the reading options for class: Most of what makes a book "good" is that we are reading it at the right moment for us.

Spelling. English has many tricky word pairs that the spellchecker cannot help you with, like this one: BARE v. BEAR.

Featured Storybook. This project is from the Indian Epics class: Temple of Doom. Instead of Indiana Jones, meet Dr. Arwen Fairchild, archaeologist — although she does have some help from a gallant "Yank" with a strong resemblance to Indiana. As the mystery deepens, it turns out that Dr. Arwen Fairchild herself may be the key... because there is more to the story of Shiva's bow than you ever imagined!

Free Book Online: Today's free book is Ovid: The Heroides translated by Tony Kline. See the Freebookapalooza blog for links and the table of contents. This is a collection of mythological tales told in the form of letters written by the classical heroines ("Heroides" means "Heroines" in Greek) to their heroes.

Words of Wisdom: Today's saying is Bees gather honey from every flower (an English proverb). Find out more at the Proverb Lab. This is a good metaphor I think for liking all kinds of books and stories, gathering ideas from all of them which you then use for your own creations.

Video: Those of you in Indian Epics will be browsing the Amar Chitra Katha comic book collection today, so I wanted to share this video: A Tribute to Anant Pai, who was the founder of ACK Comics. You can find out more at the ACK-Bizzell blog.

Growth Mindset: Today's growth mindset cat is a lifelong learner: What can I learn next? You can find out more at the Growth Mindset blog.

Event on Campus: Play games and make friends at International Students Game Night in Farzaneh (formerly Hester) Hall from 6PM - 8PM (details). Find out more about this and other events at the Campus Calendar online.

January 19: Poe. Today, January 19, marks the anniversary of the birth of Edgar Allan Poe in the year 1809. You can read more about Poe's remarkable and tragic life in this detailed Wikipedia article, and the Penn Online Books page contains a list of his books which are available online. Below is an image of the cover designed by the famous illustrator Gustave Dore for Poe's famous poem, The Raven:

Check out the Twitter stream for information and fun stuff during the day, or click here for past announcements.