Month: April 2013

The Learnable Art of Group Chemistry

When I was in fifth grade in College Gate Elementary, Mrs Hershberger taught me that the best questions were big, obvious questions. So here are three:

In sports, why do underdogs win so often, and odds-on favorites fall on their faces?
In business, why are some meetings insanely fruitful, and others are torture?
In life, why do certain …

5 Surprising Habits of Super-Creatives

Clumsy is Good

When someone tries a new skill for the first time, we instinctively see the first few minutes as hugely important. We eagle-eye the first tries for promising signs — a natural grace, a knack. We immediately start sorting people into categories: those who have it, and those who don’t.
With that in mind, here is former …

When’s the Most Important Time to Practice? (Not When You Think.)


I want to share two pieces of writing that capture what so many of us are feeling today.
“The marathon is symbolism for overcoming and facing challenges,” [marathoner Shalane Flanagan] said. “This will not stop anyone. If anything, it will inspire people to persevere and show that we’re better than that.”
Talking to her, I had another …

Why You Should Mimic More

We normally think of mimicry as a party trick. Which is is — but it’s also something more.
For an example, check out this skit from last week’s Saturday Night Live. It’s Bruno Mars doing dead-on impressions of Green Day, Justin Bieber, Steven Tyler, Louis Armstrong, and Michael Jackson (to save time, fast forward to 4:55 …

How to Spot a Master Teacher: A Field Guide

A Quick Glimpse into the Future of Learning

11 Rules for Better Writing

The other day I was asked to take part in a MOOC.  If you haven’t heard the term yet, you will soon. MOOCs  — Massive Online Open Courses — are speedily revolutionizing higher education, because they have the capability to deliver top-level teaching via the web to thousands of people, for free.
Anyway, this particular MOOC, …