Scrimshaw Folder: Part 3

Random Note

One thing I like about my daughter’s school (she’s in 1st grade) is that, many mornings on the ride into school, she says, “Today I’m going to make ________.”  She has at least a little bit of control over her agenda and plenty of agency over her own learning.*


At Google / At School

According to Steven Johnson, the give-back on 20% time at Google is that employees “give semi-regular updates to their superiors.”  In schools, where we don’t technically have 20% time, and our reporting lines are generally pretty fuzzy, we can still make it a habit to ask each other, What are you working on? and to share what we’re working on with each other.


From Doug Lemov’s Practice Perfect

“People may practice ways of taking feedback that help them avoid doing anything about it” (109).

Lemov quoting Joshua Foer: “The secret to improving at a skill is to retain some degree of conscious control over it while practicing . . . to force oneself to stay out of autopilot” (110).

Lemov quoting a John Wooden practice: correction is wasted unless it is put into practice immediately (118).

Lemov paraphrasing Chip and Dan Heath: “People often assume that the size of a solution has to match the size of a problem.  In reality, a small change can often fix what is —  or feels like — a big problem” (119).


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Advice on Design (from a presentation by Reshan Richards)

Use sans serif fonts when writing on screens and serif fonts when writing on paper.

As educators, we are always engaged with visual design — for our students.

Font choices have connotations, have inflections.

When we ask students to make things, we are asking them to make design choices.  Let’s not forget that.  (Or, rather, let’s try to remember that.)

In terms of color, use red or yellow to express warmth, urgency, danger, passion.  Use greens, blues, or purples to express calm or slowness.  (The colors of our websites and our classrooms matter.)

Color looks different based on what’s around it.

On slides, use 3 font sizes max.  Bigger font is most important.

On slides, use a full bleed when presenting images.  White space, when present, should serve a purpose.

Don’t stretch a small image.  Shrink a big one instead.  Find the right resolution.  That’s the effort that will help you learn how to build nice slides.

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