Food for Thought

So far the Open Lab Project is interesting with some aspects being very subjective. It appears to me, that there is much beating around the bush rather than stating directly what people want. It is my personal perception that issues of concern are Middle States, Path Ways and General Education and the need to establish a useful general education process; with assessment that can be understood horizontally across disciplines in the learning process. I work best when people say directly what they want, rather than go in an indirect way. What I am more interested in is developing my courses to meet the expectations of the college community. The foundation of education in my opinion is basically understood when we reflect on the foundation of knowledge going back to the early philosophers.

Also, with group involvement; I have learned more about subjectivity more than anything else so far. I am not too much interested in working in groups, neither am I much interested in putting my picture all over websites. I am greatly however, concerned about my responsibilities to the college community as a whole, and as such must get better at such groups taking place in the Open Lab Project. I am very concerned about the improvement of my students to transfer knowledge. I am concerned with the means to which I can produce what is needed for them to do so. My direct plans for my students is the use of flow-charts for every fabrication phase in my courses. I will have students placed in groups and have each group establish a flow-chart of each fabrication process, and explain the theoretical concepts behind them. These flow-chart projects will be arranged in such a way that they will be able to explain in detail the theory and related fabrication processes they will be required to develop. I will not have one group leader; as I teach my students that they are all leaders. This is also demonstrated in the classroom environment, with the acceptance of new ideas from my students. If a student disagrees with something I am doing in a fabrication process, I allow them to use what ever technique they feel is best. Then we review and discuss that technique. If they goof; I explain the concepts of trouble shooting.  If they are successful, I compliment them. Either way, it is used as classroom discussion and included into the learning process as a valuable lesson for us all.

When I was in Group 2, I felt that with all of the different disciplines in the group there was something to learn from everyone. Some were in construction technology, architectural engineering, and restorative dentistry. To me this combination of disciplines in a group project creates the understanding, which leads great support for the General Education Project; It starts with a FOUNDATION. Every phase of each discipline starts with the evaluation of a foundation. For Restorative Dentistry the foundations are the patients maxillary and mandibular arches. The strength of the foundation is most significant to start with, with the same being true in the general education process. To understand the vertical factors, which extend from the foundation and how they apply to the horizontal is very significant if one understand without subjectivity.

Last, I find that Open Lab site is not as user friendly as I hoped for.

My Comments About Richard Feynman’s Book

The life of Richard Feynman has many interesting events. However, his life generally represents in my opinion, the direction many young male students with significant interest and experience in mathematical studies are invited to participate in. What I am speaking of is Physicists who work within the government; and who eventually end up working on top-secret projects in atomic-physics for national defense. Based on the information presented in the early part of his book, Mr. Feynman describes events, which lead me to believe in advance that he would eventually end up working with intelligence. The fact that he mentions working on specific government projects, which require a top secret security clearance was in my opinion, a clear indication of my previous expectations of the book.

The most important thing I came away with as a result of reading this book; is the journey one takes in obtaining knowledge. Mr. Feynman from as a young child consistently was in search of knowledge with a strong desire to learn more and solve complex problems. As the well-known musician and trumpet player Freddy Hubbert once said, “Embrace the journey.” Feynman as a young man began to embrace the journey of life, seeking knowledge of many things. I was also compelled to reflect on the Ontological Argument of Descartes, and the Fifth Meditation of Descartes, which I feel represents the development of knowledge through exploration of philosophical principles of learning. How we know what we know is a journey of trial and error of social development. The ethical issue Feynman speaks of at the end of his book is an idealistic view, which is generally non-existent or locked in the chains of our communications and involvement with others; particularly in employment. People most of the time will trade the truth, which lives in their hearts rather than run the risk of rejection.