Learning Learning and Teaching Learning, and a Wheekend to Balance it Out

I’ve finally been able to admit the source of my eternal dilly-dallying and procrastination, and it’s more of a rational, paradigmatic thing than anything psychological or psychotic: You see, I tend to see everything as a learning opportunity, if not as a brain exercise worthy of my time. And when I say EVERY THING, I mean it.

Examples, because things are always clearer with examples:

  • Playing Magic allows for strategic thinking and looking for creative solutions to problems, which helps when looking for creative ways to weave (or, as we refer to it in the faculty, “webbing”) topics together in order to make teaching and learning an overall more interesting thing.
  • Reading comics allows for access to alternative methods of bringing out popular themes in literature, albeit in a more colorful, faster-paced medium. It also helps when trying to develop a natural wittiness to your speech, as comics nowadays are written in so many different registers, from ye olde formalitie to the sailor-cussin’, which allows for differentiation between registers as well.
  • Watching random music videos on YouTube allows for immersion on alternative forms of poetry, which in themselves are an alternative form of being able to transmit all sorts of information (I think it was Eagleton who said that literature was “the best words, arranged in the best way” or something along that line of thought. correct me if I’m wrong). Plus, as our principal always said, its best characteristic is that it’s very immersive, as far as aesthetic experiences go, and that’s always a plus.
  • Reading up on so many other worlds besides this one allows for appreciation of one’s own cultures and value systems, in order to be able to be more effective in handling questions of that nature, the ones teenage students love asking the most.
  • Hanging out with students can be like a cultural immersion, if one is simply observant enough. This is a great help when helping the students along the path to seeking relevance in whatever topic is being discussed, hopefully giving them the idea that they can indeed find personal relevance in any topic, whether literature or not, in order to be able to turn anything into a learning experience.

… and so on, and so forth.

You will see the problem here when you take another look and see that there is nothing there connected to actually making lesson plans, class records, quizzes and all other forms of paperwork. Which is how I’d actually have the curriculum if I could have it done that way, but that’s something for another one of these still rainy days.

Been reading up on Adult ADHD, and the things that come up are seriously scaring me. Not to be a hypochondriac or anything, but I’ve been hit with too many of the things that articles refer to as the common symptoms. Thing is, though, that I kind of like being this psychologically damaged little person, and I wouldn’t want to change if it means that I am able to uniquely experience the world in the way I am doing now.

I just sincerely hope the kids don’t turn into something like me.

***

Last Saturday’s gig was fun: lots of batchmates and fellow writers relaxing with milk tea, artsy shoes and bling-y accessories, and chilled, not-so-loud indie music. It’s always nice to be around people as unabashedly evil as you are. Let’s just say that you have to believe me when I say lots of tongues were bitten on that night. Fail birthday surprise for Karize failed, though, due to an uncanny amount of spoilers from people who were told specifically not to spoil that they remember her birthday. Oh well, at least we chimichurri’d our way to a hearty dinner and an even heartier conversation, one punctuated with laughter that probably made people outside Cocina Juan wonder how drunk we were, even if we hadn’t ingested any alcohol at all that evening. Extreme stereotypes aside, maybe that’s where the romantic image of the drunken student from Los Banos came from: when we’re together, we’re loud and brash in ways others would scoff at.

I really should be seeking out more local stuff in the more shoegaze-like genres out there when I have time. So that I can listen to it while staring at the shoes I bought from the event.

***

Sunday was no slouch either, as far as weekends went. Got last-minute pulled by Lola all the way to the CCP to watch a stage adaptation of the Hinilawod, an epic from Iloilo and IIRC one of the longest surviving epic narratives in the world today (Take that, Lam-Ang!).  A bit too much on the special effects in my opinion, but it’s something I’d imagine most of today’s audiences would need (promises to self to write a full-er review of the whole thing sometime later). Bought an anthropology book on Filipino prehistory that they were selling outside the theater because I’m a nerd that way (arghreadinglist!). Talk on everything from anime to how I taught Philippine epics to my high school students, plus dinner at the oh-so-nostalgic Ma Mon Luk main branch, all the way home.

As for me, I’m just happy that at least some of my students enjoyed reading the stories I told them to research on. Pinoy pride is severely lacking in this country of ours, after all.

***

My brain is shutting down, even though my body isn’t. Have to stop writing before I degrade into ranting, depressive gobbledigook.

Heh, Sigur Ros pun there.

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