Here’s MORE Free Online Architecture Courses from World-Class Universitites!

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About two-and-a-half years ago, The PractitioNERD released a blog post about some free architecture courses offered by MIT, TU Delft, edX and the Open Online Academy. Basically, if you want to continue learning about the world of architecture without forking over the dough for a  master’s or a doctorate, this is a good way to go.  Essentially, taking short-term courses remotely have become popular worldwide as educational alternatives as they make it easier to dive into the varied topics these coursed cover, thanks to platforms like edX (offered by Harvard and MIT).  Continue reading “Here’s MORE Free Online Architecture Courses from World-Class Universitites!”

Finally, Here’s an Internet Security Basics Course for the Whole Family; Just in Time for the Holidays!

Are you planning on spending time with your extended family this holiday season? Are you also the designated computer/techie/gadget-person of the family that EVERYONE tells their computer issues to or asks how to set up their devices? If so — I feel your pain — then you should consider having them take a seat and watch this series of internet security videos.  If fact, you should probably REQUIRE them to watch it.  Courtesy of a security company called Varonis, this course has five in-depth lessons on topics such as: creating a good and secure password, how to know what websites to trust, how to better protect your smartphone, and even a lesson about the internet of things (if they get something like a Nest, WeeMo, Amazon Echo, Google Home, or any other smart device like those). Continue reading “Finally, Here’s an Internet Security Basics Course for the Whole Family; Just in Time for the Holidays!”

Using ‘The Walking Dead’ Game To Teach Ethics in Schools? YEAH!

I love Telltale’s The Walking Dead series — which I am STILL playing through Season 1 because I am easily distracted and busy with work and THIS WEBSITE — a popular video game series famous for putting the player (i.e., YOU) in life-or-death ethical quandaries throughout the game, forcing you to make some pretty difficult decisions. Thankfully, creative teachers are STILL a thing, and a REALLY talented one could probably use the game to identify and explore those moral dilemmas as a discussion in class. YAY! Continue reading “Using ‘The Walking Dead’ Game To Teach Ethics in Schools? YEAH!”

Got 15 Minutes? Use It To Learn The History Of Western Architecture!

Have you ever felt the need to brush up on your architectural history, you know, so it sounds like you actually know what you’re talking about at the dinner table, at the bar with some friends, or at a symposium when the debate starts on the current state of art and architecture?  If you answered “yes” — because that’s totally not weird –, don’t have the time to get a minor in art & architectural history like I did, AND you have a spare fifteen minutes on you, then the UK-based distance-learning website The Open University (OU) is just for you.  The OU has available a series of helpful online videos simply titled “Design in a Nutshell.” All you have to do is lie back (or sit back if you’re in a chair, or….something), click on the play icon, and let young Ben “Obi-Wan” Kenobi himself Ewan McGregor narrate this pleasant series of minimally-animated, quick-paced, diagrammatic, and hilarious cartoons. At the end, you’ll have a general idea on all things design-related from the Gothic Revival era to Postmodernism you can prime yourself with some cursory lessons on all things design from Gothic Revival to Postmodernism in under a quarter of an hour. Continue reading “Got 15 Minutes? Use It To Learn The History Of Western Architecture!”

Defending Video Games As Much More Than Entertainment

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Video games are an excellent form of entertainment, and has been since becoming popular in the country in the 1970’s.  However, like most forms of entertainment, video games have been scrutinized for violence, mature adult themes, and — possibly my favorite — being nothing more than just a “dangerous time sink”, which is fancy talk for “time-wasting”. Alan Henry of Lifehacker posted this article on how video games can be treated as something more than just an “entertaining waste of time” back in February of last year, and was one of the best things I’ve read regarding video games truly being more than meets the eye.  I recently came across the article again, and felt the need to share it on how video games can relieve anxiety, teach players new skills, and keep players motivated to complete tasks.   Continue reading “Defending Video Games As Much More Than Entertainment”

Learn Geography….based on a possible Zombie Apocalypse!

Sorry fellow nerds, but no “The Great Gatsby” hat-trick/triple crown today.  However, I think this will do just fine.

Hockey and horse-racing terms aside, when it comes to education in America, we certainly can do better; we are declining in science and math, and many of our citizens are unable to even point out familiar states, provinces and countries on a map.  One could assume that this decline could in fact be the first step to a probable zombie apocalpse, and if so, thank goodness for educator David Hunter.  Hunter, a fan of geography AND zombies, developed a full middle school geography curriculum taught in the context of a Zombie Apocalypse. His project combines textbooks, teaching plans, and creative role-playing simulation to engage learning.  Teachers and students will be able to learn real world geographic concepts by learning and applying their knowledge to survive in a world flooded by zombies with help of the curriculum’s books and learning materials.

Continue reading “Learn Geography….based on a possible Zombie Apocalypse!”