Jane Jacobs “helped us see that roads and buildings and streetscapes encapsulated information”

I like Alice Munro’s comparison between her way of reading a short story, and the experience a person has when visiting somebody’s house. We all know how a house works, she remarks in the anthology entitled The art of the short story (2206), and “how it encloses space and makes connections between one enclosed space and another and […]

Warfare in North America, 1500-1865: The normal grammar that defined the meaning of wartime violence sometimes didn’t work

A blurb at the Toronto Public website notes that Wayne E. Lee, in this book published in 2011 by Oxford University Press, has concluded that: “In the end, the repeated experience of wars with barbarians or brothers created an American culture of war that demanded absolute solutions: enemies were either to be incorporated or rejected. […]

We become what we think; we become the stories we tell ourselves

If you wear a white coat you believe blongs to a doctor, your ability to pay attention increases significantly, according to a study reported in The New York Times. If you wear the same coat believing it belongs to a painter, your ability to pay attention does not improve. The New York Times article that […]

The British empire was dismantled after the end of the Second World War

I was in elementary school in Montreal in 1955 when the ‘Richard Riot’ occurred in that city. The event, on March 17, 1955, was named after Maurice Richard, the star player for the Montreal Canadiens of the National Hockey League. In later years it was described as a key factor in Quebec’s Quiet Revolution of […]

Study tracking 2.5 million students over 20 years links good teachers to lasting gain

I found this January 2012 New York Times article, about research that links good teachers to lasting gains, of interest. The article reports that a large-scale study – tracking 2.5 million students over 20 years – found that public school teachers who help raise their students’ standardized-test scores appear to have a lasting positive effect […]

A good presentation entertains, informs, and connects

The Fall/Winter 2011 newsletter of the Canadian Stuttering Association features an article by Jaan Pill in which he describes what he’s learned about connecting with the audience: A good presentation connects with an audience During the past twenty years of volunteer work, I have served as one of the co-founders Canadian Stuttering Association (1991), the Estonian Stuttering Association […]