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Posts Tagged ‘voice

I appreciate a good read from any source. It does not take much for such a read to help me see applications in education.

One such read was an investigative piece by the Washington Post (WaPo) broke a story that resulted in the resignation of a character in US politics.

The WaPo reinforces the important role the press plays in the current US political climate. It does not govern and it does not make laws, and it cannot uphold or police those laws. But the press can dive into research and report what it finds.

A good paper is not cynical, but critical. Its reporters and editors are not unprofessional, but hold themselves to high standards of journalistic integrity.

The same could be said about educators who are critical of schooling practices that are only rooted in the past, ignorant of today, and blind to the future.

The passions of these agents should not be based on unfounded bias, but on experience, rigorous research, and reflective practice. Like a watchdog, they are a check and measure because they monitor and they alert when they sense danger.

These critics are not whiners or complainers. They are a dissenting voice that does not deny that some things are good. However, they recognise that things could be better and they are willing to point those out.

It is important to listen to what our learners have to say. Unfortunately, for some teachers this is rhetoric and they pay lip service to that statement.

Fortunately, some students take matters into their own hands and create messages for all to hear.

The latest one was This Is Genius.

Video source

It might have been inspired by another one in 2013 from across the pond.

Video source

The next video is not a spoken word performance like the first two, but it is no less important.

Video source

The girl probably had help writing the speech. There is nothing wrong with that since political leaders have speech writers.

The girl’s ideas were not entirely new or uniquely her own. There is nothing wrong with that since all of us reuse and recycle the work of others all the time.

The girl had the confidence and courage to stand up for a cause. There is something wrong with us if we judge that cynically or lack the same courage to do the same.

The girl was barely taller than the lectern she stood behind. But she had a view that few adults had. Are we listening to her? Are we listening to our students?

As a keynote speaker, I might be concerned about various things. Sometimes the organizers take care of them, sometimes not. Those that do understand the pressures of being a keynote speaker and relieve some burdens.

But there is one basic thing organizers cannot control. The health of the speaker.

Thanks to a throat infection, I am starting to lose my voice a few days before I am due to deliver my keynote address at the inaugural International Congress on e-Learning in the Philippines.

A similar thing happened to me last year at a day-long workshop I conducted for a client. My voice reduced to barely a squeak and I wore a microphone and waist-mounted speakers to amplify the mouse in my throat.

I can only hope that this is not the start of a flu and will seek medication to get rid of that rodest.

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The lines between email and other forms of communication are blurring.

Google has added voice and video to Gmail. It has also enabled RSS feeds to be translated into the (popular) language of your choice.

See Google Press release.

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