Why? Why? And more why?

From my Facebook memories: Aaaaaand another assessment tool that requires written student work as “evidence.” *sigh* I was an elementary band teacher, and while some knowledge of how notation works can be assessed using traditional paper-pencil tests, “before and after” student work is what we hear. My job was to teach them to play, to … Read more

Joy in low-stakes creativity

photo of words in a notebook

Changing Hands Bookstore had a virtual writing event recently where we were guided through a variety of chance operations activities. These activities leave the writing process to chance. (They’re useful for any creative composing, not just writing. John Cage used some in composing music, for example.) Leaving things to chance requires the writer to put … Read more

Judging competence and the okayness of being bad

Because very little if anything in life is completely binary, I felt myself needing to qualify many of these thoughts as I wrote. Instead, I’m just going to say here at the beginning that yes, there are exceptions to these generalizations, and since they’re exceptions, their incidence is low. If you’re feeling like you’re the … Read more

Change, one drip at a time

My standard advocacy for change is small, sustainable pieces. My eating habits changed that way. My exercise habits changed that way. My financial habits changed that way. (I do think there are situations where this isn’t the best, but it applies more broadly than cold turkey, in my opinion and experience.) Bits that are so … Read more

Christmas, shipping delays, and a different solution

Prices of seemingly everything are going up. Delays in arrival of products and materials/components have been going on for over a year now but also seem to be increasing. The shipping delays are in part due to a shortage of workers (which is largely due to losing people—temporarily, long-term, or permanently—to COVID) but also because … Read more