Saturday, October 9, 2010

Blog Post 7

Randy Pausch's Last Lecture
Wow! I am amazed at how upbeat this man is.  It's inspiring. As soon as he introduced thebig elephant in the room, I paused the video, and googled him.  He wasn't lying.  Not that I thought he was, but I just wanted to know how much longer he lived since he said the doctors gave him roughly five more months to live (even though he was in amazing physical shape). This healthy looking, upbeat guy, with a very positive outlook on life, passed away six months later.  Ya know, it's always those who have six months to live, or those who have had a debilitating disease since they were five, that inspire the rest of us to do something with the lives that we are blessed to have.  They don't sit around and feel sorry for themselves.  We (healthy people) do that for them.  The ones that are blessed enough not to have an expiration date, are the ones that do nothing with our lives because we assume that we have forever to do so.  
He had the opportunity to learn so much at such a young age.  His football coach kept riding him for messing up all practice.  And I too, feel like sometimes, teachers or parents just won't get off my back.  You want to just scream, "Hey, why don't you ever focus on him or her because they never do what they're supposed to!" But like the coach said, it is a good thing when they ride you for doing wrong, because when they stop all together, that just means they have given up on you.  I plan to ride my students' backs for as long as I can.  I do not plan on giving up on any of them.  And Enthusiam.  Enthusiam, enthusiasm, enthusiasm.  If I could teach my students only one thing it would be enthusiasm.  For your subject, for your current project, for your education, for your life.
The Brick Wall.  I love his idea of the brick wall. I, along with everyone else in the world, have encountered many brick walls in my life.  And with many of the brick walls I have encountered I have simply walked away.   This just showed me, that obviously, I didn't want it enough, so obviously I was not meant to do it.  But with some things in my life, not only have I passed the brick walls set before me, I have gone on to more brick walls and surpassed them also. It was comical to see his reaction to the fact that his students had surpassed his expectations at the beginning of the semester.  He did do the right thing.  Because telling them that they have already surpassed his expectations would have been an injustice to them.  I think students need to know that they are going in the right direction but if all you do is praise them, they will never want to go any further.  It is amazing that a project he assigned in his class evolved into this campus-wide event that everyone lined up to see.  The impact that he had on his students and the campus is just incredible.  This could never be done in a desk with a book and a pencil.  He gave his students limitless possibilities and from that the teacher became the student and they were both able to learn together.  He had a lot of pride in the masters program he was over.  He emphasized the reason that it was so successful was because they had so much freedom.  It was a project-based curriculum, where there were many field trips, hands-on learning, and no reporting to the deans.  Is obvious why it was so successful.  It was exciting.  Who gets excited about a book?   No one.  Who gets excited about a field trip? Everyone.  I hope my class will be similar to this.  OHHH! And the self-reflective bar graphs. Wow. That is just awesome.  I wonder, if there was a bar graph that showed how easy I was to work with, would I be at the top or the bottom?  This whole head-fake thing is also very important. We've learned through this method since we were in little league.  We thought we were simply learning how to    hit a ball, but we were really learning values like perseverance and character.  Learning not to throw the bat down when you got so pissed off because you couldn't hit the ball.  You just kept trying until you could.  So while learning how to hit, throw, and catch a ball, you actually learned many values that you had no idea you were actually learning.  When I teach my students, I want them not only to learn that they must learn the material, but that they must continuously be involved in their learning, and they must be responsible for their learning.  His legacy is learning something hard while having fun. Well I would say that is something worth being proud of.  His parents could be the best teachers ever, especially when it came down to the little things  like letting his imagination run wild by letting him paint his room.  He really is a salesman of education.  And a pretty darn good one.  I want to Be a Tigger! I want to Have Fun! I want to use this in my classroom to headfake my students.  I want their excitement to boil over.  I want them to have so much fun that they have no idea that they are learning anything at all.


  1. Hi Paige! I really enjoyed reading all of your thoughts on Mr. Pausch's video. This was one of the most inspiring videos that I have ever seen simply because of the upbeat attitude that this man had even though he knew that his life would soon be coming to an end. I think that anyone can learn a thing or two just by watching his attitude and ways of thinking. I loved when he said that you have to just deal with the cards that you are dealt in life because sometimes they simply cannot be changed. I also liked his reference to the brick wall because we all end up hitting them one time or another as we venture through life. I guess we just have to keep trying no matter how difficult that may seem. I hope that the dreams that you have will come true for both you and your future students. It sounds like you will be a teacher who is very passionate in your work and that is always a wonderful thing. Maybe one day all teachers will vow to have fun with their students and get them excited to learn; I know that I am now definitely even more excited to do so after seeing this video!

  2. Hello Paige,
    I was assigned to comment on your blog post #8 but you haven't updated your blog. Please catch up on blogging, because it's hard to catch up when you get too far behind. Good job on your previous postings!!
    LaChandra Lett