Monthly Archives: December 2015

2015 Reflexions

This is the time of doing end of year reflexions. It is New Year’s Eve and I am taking a few moments to reflect on what happened this ending year, as well a meditating about what I would like to do over this coming 2016.

The ‘reality’ of the tradition of renewal every new year is part of the reality of a continuos changing life that goes forward as it circle around events that seem never change.

It is the paradox of permanent change. Every year has the same seasons winter, spring, summer, and fall. Stations that are connected as the model train circling around the Christmas tree. These four seasons have within a sequence of commemorative dates related to the evolution of cultures like Christmas in the Christian tradition related to the birth of Jesus and celebrated close to the winter solstice. But as the Earth going around the sun is not coming back to the same place because the sun is moving through space. In the grand picture of the universe not the earth, nor the solar system, or the Milky Way will ever be back to some point where they once were!

It is is some way ironic that the apparent cyclicality of events is only an illusion. This energizing illusion once again will be had this New Year.

So let me enumerate some of the highlights of 2015 for me.

  1. The wedding of our Son Jorge with the wonderful bride Jonise. Back is September we were so fortunate to celebrate with our children this event. My daughter Bernice had to fly all the way from Barcelona for a weekend of celebration as she was working there on an assignment.
  2. The engagement of our daughter Bernice. Her fiance Alex flew to Barcelona to propose. Before that he came to Portland to let us know of his intentions.
  3. In may I had a new hip. Hip surgery went really well thanks to the expertise of Dr. Boardman who performed an excellent operation and prescribed six weeks of complete rest that help me recharge my batteries after a very busy school year that ended the Friday before my surgery. Not only I was able to read and study over those six weeks but over the rest of my three month summer as well.
  4. In October my 50th anniversary of preparatory school (high school) graduation. Flying to San Luis Potosí, Mexico for a weekend of celebration was en exhilarating experience. Met with my school friends that I had not seen in 50 years, a renewed friendship that is continuing and will continue for many more years.
  5. Work at Warner Pacific College was very satisfying. Teaching is always a challenge that comes with lots of emotions. Working with young students that are the future of our society is a great honor and responsibility, brings with the hard work a joy that is deep and permanent.
  6. My life in general has been blessed with the company of my wife Maria Eugenia.

For 2016 I hope to continue working and enjoying life in the company of my family. Do not have any plans in particular and I am very open to what the future brings. At this point of my life and with the experiences that I have had the only thing I can say is: I’m ready for life!

 

 

 

 

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Effective Questioning

We learn through questioning! I think the most effective teaching is based on inquiry so this article is a must read as it exposes the need for effective questioning! In college chemistry, a methodology has been developed called Process Oriented Guided Inquiry (POGIL) in which (supervised by the professor) students lead the inquiry.

Class Teaching

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Tonight’s 15 minute forum was led by PE teacher James Crane.  James started the session with a quote (source unknown) that he suggests would be familiar to most teachers – at some point in our career:

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So, it’s worth thinking about the purpose of questioning:

  • to interest, engage and challenge pupils.  This is why teaching is such a complex task – we may have up to 30 students in our class, all with different prior knowledge and motivation – but we need to think of suitable questions that will keep all of them in the struggle zone;

MELCstruggle

  • to check on prior knowledge;
  • to stimulate recall and use of existing knowledge and experience in order to create new understanding and meaning;
  • to focus thinking on key concepts and issues;
  • to extend pupils’ thinking from the concrete and factual to the analytical and evaluative;
  • to lead pupils through a planned sequence…

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