Spicy Snacks are little bits and bites for people that are into education, parenting, or technology. Enjoy!
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that my brother is autistic. As a very large, adult male with excitable yet anti-social behaviours, we often find ourselves having to dialogue with police far more often than we wish. In fact, while most people are likely shocked to see a police cruiser in their driveway late in the evening, when we see one, our first thought is often to wonder what my brother has done. It sounds horrible, but, really, you get used to anything. That’s one of the things you learn when being a caregiver for someone whose behaviour is completely unacceptable in most social situations. After our most recent visit from an officer, something dawned on me which may or may not go against our stereotypes.
Of all the public servants we have interacted with as it concerns my brother, including teachers and social service workers, the local police have been far and away the most patient, understanding, and optimistic group of “officials” we’ve ever dealt with. This is very much in contrast to the way police, especially in America, are depicted in mainstream media. I am amazed and proud at the nuanced conversations I have had with them, always walking away with a sense that “we’re in this together”. On this Canadian Thanksgiving Day, I’m grateful to have the York Regional Police.
I normally have an aversion to sociological inventories that categorize people, such as “learning styles” and “colour types”, but I’ll admit that Gretchen Rubin‘s theory of people as either Rebel, Obliger, Questioner, or Upholder is a compelling one.
The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics has just released their whitepaper called Catalyzing Change in High School Mathematics. Rarely have I seen an official curriculum organization be so explicit about the need for anti-oppressive pedagogies. Take the time to read it.
We throw the word collaboration around so much in education that it often means nothing. That’s why I love seeing real, clear examples of it. Check out this inspiring video of an unlikely collaboration between an ecologist and a make-up artist who are working together to stop the poaching of endangered turtles. I love the way both parties bring a missing piece to the puzzle.
Do you have an iPhone? Do you wish its battery life was ten times longer than it actually is? Are you as confused as I am that aesthetic modifications in these technologies are constantly marketed as innovations when we would do anything for a longer battery life instead? One feature of iOS 11 (the new operating system for iPhones and iPads) I like is the ability to customize your Control Center (although the Electronic Frontier Foundation might disagree), the thing which appears when you swipe up from the bottom of your phone. I’ve put my Low Power Mode control on it, and have gotten into the habit of just keeping it on permanently. It has quite possibly doubled my battery life. Here’s how to get to it:
And then you’ll have the option of toggling it on and off with ease.