Mindfulness, Compassion, and the Olympics

I came across these two articles today and immediately thought of what we have been doing in class. Though from really different perspectives, they overlap a great deal and both of them speak directly to your lives. Treat yourself to a few minutes dedicated to yourself – slow down long enough to read them and perhaps ponder them a bit. Enjoy.

How to manage stress like an Olympic biathlete

The promise of compassion for stressed out teens

np: Thomas Brinkmann “Walk with Me”

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Essay Helps packet

Here is the packet of helpful advice that we have been using in class. Though I have gone over sections of it in class, I do think that the more familiar you are with it, the more confident you will be going into the writing portion of the essay. Read it over.

Essay Helps Packet

and since you probably “lost” it, here is the rubric:

Essay Rubric

Nuance in approaches to accessing knowledge

Following today’s conversation about nuance and “no-easy” answers follows these three articles which all address the ways in which knowledge is accessed. What results is complicated but significant. Enjoy.

via Why Can’t I Put My Smartphone Down? Here’s The Science : Shots – Health News : NPR

Reading and how it is taught (incorrectly)

America’s Real Digital Divide

np: “Losing My Edge” LCD Soundsystem

A Change in Knowledge Production

I saw this today and immediately thought of several things almost at once but for now I am going to leave aside the English teacher excitement of such a finding. Instead I want to think through this wearing my ToK beanie/toboggan. Read through this and see how much of this is similar to the piece we are reading in class about how a discipline is altered/created by the technology used. I am of the opinion that the humanities have only begun to understand what the computer can do and as time goes on, a paradigm shift is in the works – not unlike what happened to ethnomusicology with the advent of the phonogram. If this kind of thing strikes your interest, then look up the Stanford Literary Lab and Franco Moretti – they are seen as being on the cutting edge of this. Enjoy.

via Plagiarism Software Unveils a New Source for 11 of Shakespeare’s Plays – The New York Times

np: The Hair and Skin Trading Company (early stuff)

The intersection of ethics, science, and nature

Saw this yesterday and was greatly intrigued. It is easy to think that things will always be as they are now – some psychologists argue that is our default position. But in fact, nothing remains the same. So the question is, what to do about that? How to prepare for an ever-changing future?

Where those questions get really interesting is in the area of ethics. Here is one possible ethical response to an ever-changing future. And if you would like a more philosophical examination of this issue, then check out the pieces in your ToK Reader on pp. 303, 306, and 310.

And if you were looking for example ideas for your ToK Essay, you could do worse than this one

via No Children Because of Climate Change? Some People Are Considering It – The New York Times

Interpretation in science

New interpretation? paradigm shift? any of these are possible as continued work reveals new findings in the sciences. As more work is done in this area, the implications get wider and wider. If plants are conscious, then what does “life” mean? does this mean we need to re-think certain ethical concepts? does it mean that Burger is in fact related to the trees?

At any rate, this article does a good job of presenting  the role of interpretation in science. Enjoy.

via Sedate a Plant, and It Seems to Lose Consciousness. Is It Conscious? – The New York Times

np: Aphex Twin “Selected Ambient Vol 2”