Linda Woodard

A former educator who will never stop teaching., Officially none at the moment- retired :-)
New Smyrna Beach, FL, United States

About Linda

Bio

Finished my teaching career at not quite 34 years, and now I can't wait to see what the next phase of my life will be. :-)

Languages

English

Areas of Expertise

Schmoozing ;-), Getting my students to realize there is more outside the USA, getting students motivated to learn

An idea worth spreading

Slow down; turn off the electronics; unplug yourself from the computer (and I KNOW this is ironic being I am saying this on a net site!) and phone; eat dinner with your family; talk to each other...and SMILE!!!!

I'm passionate about

Education and its reform (NCLB DOES NOT WORK!!); books and bookstores; the environment; simplicity; Europe (esp. the Balkans!)

My TED story

I found this site by accident when I was checking online for my flight information to Europe in 2008, and typed in TED as the airline was UniTED and is referred to as TED. Well, up popped this site, and after reading the little blurb above the addy, I HAD to see what it was. AND..... it must have been fate, for I have been a "TEDster" ever since that time and have been TORTURING/ ENLIGHTENING/ ENTERTAINING my students with the many talks from this wonderful site. :-) It is my wish that I can attend a conference/talk at some point in time as it is on my "bucket list'! Thank you to the people who made this happen and who MAKE it happen every day. It renews my faith in humanity and just wish that THESE were the people who were on the news and NOT those who harm us.

Favorite talks

Comments & conversations

72085
Linda Woodard
Posted 4 months ago
Hannah Brencher: Love letters to strangers
I am a former teacher who is late to this talk by the lovely Hannah and her amazing idea, but what she has said is what I have espoused to my students for years. She is correct in that there is nothing more magical and compassionate as receiving a REAL hand-written note or letter in today's sterile, technological, seemingly compassionless and impatient world. There is nothing like holding a piece of paper in your hand, looking at handwritten words whose message goes beyond what the words say as they also reveal the character/traits of the person who crafted those words. There is no amount of memes or emoticons or emojis that can replace a person's handwriting. And it makes me not only sad but angry that so many schools in America (and now Finland as of 2016) feel that teaching cursive is a waste of time, for they are wrong...and not only for all the reasons she has stated, but also we know that cursive helps with coordination and remembering things better. When I taught, I often had my students have international pen-pals with the last two years having my students write to students in Sweden. The other teacher and I agreed that for two exchanges each, they would be hand written and we would mail them off. The first time an exchange happened, I could not believe the response of my students, for not only is their paper different, the handwriting, which was their second language, was not only admired, but also raised questions about the writer's personality. The second batch had some in separate envelopes as little trinkets wanted to be given. And when I told them that the exchanges could now be done via email/FB, I could see disappointment in many eyes as the REAL letters were not only something they had not been familiar with but also bred familiarity. So...Hannah, kudos to you and having a gut feeling that there was void in our lives and doing something about it. I am hoping that this will spread AND that schools will again see the value of writing.
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
How do you think we can motivate young people to perceived and purposeful studying?
First Jan-Bernard, I adore your diction choice of "infected" when describing being interested in learning as that what it really is, and those who are truly immersed in it are almost like they have a fever which will not break until they reach their goal, and I love when that happens. But are you also saying that most German students are no longer motivated to learn due to technology and its distractions? OH NO, as from my experience, the smartest and most driven students I had were the foreign exchange students from Germany. And when they would share what their school was like with their American classmates, probably 98% of them would state that they would never do what they have to do to get good grades. So, then this problem is growing....
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
What are 5 things you have learned that has completely changed your life?
Sebastian, I can't answer for Zidni, and again, remember that each list is a personal one and supposed has changed that person's life, but I think what was meant is not to have "low expectations", but "lower ones" which is a difference. Perhaps those that were had were too high at the time and may have been unattainable due to circumstances beyond the person's control, but since they were lowered a bit, they were met and success followed. Does that make sense???
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
In an individualistic world where autonomy is a requirement for human-involvement, should conversation be mandatory?
First, I am not sure totally what you are asking. I thought you had wanted to know generally why we don't talk to each other while out in public or at least acknowledge each other's existence (which really is happening more so due to technology, but you are too young to know any other way ;-)), but then in your second to the last paragraph, you are asking why "we our most painful secrets to strangers in stream-of-consciousness outbursts, but refuse to communicate wholly with the ones closest to us" which is what I don't understand. DO you mean the "strangers" to be those on the net as that is where the true anonymity lies compared to "those closest to us" which I thought you meant in our life, like our friends, or do you mean that we tend to tell those closest standing to us our secrets, which is then this is a totally different question, and really negates the first one. So I think I need some help as I seem to off base in my understanding compared to those who are responding.
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
What are 5 things you have learned that has completely changed your life?
Jing, I have read all of these, yet for some reason I think most could identify with two of yours which are so simple, yet have changed the lives of millions, and that is learning English since it is the language of business and WAS the language of the internet, and the internet itself. We are reaching out to people and growing closer as a world like we never would have without this invention/discovery. And your number 3 was so touching as well, for again, it is so simplel.....but I must confess that really, your #1, for some weird reason, brought tears to my eyes.... Regards from Florida
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
What type of feedback do you seek in your work and on your ideas and from whom do you seek it?
Thank Amy, and you are SOOOO right about the kids being our true bosses (but within reason, of course ;-)), and also that we truly listen to them. And glad to read, too, that you are open and do rely on your "communities of interest" in your quest to be the best you can be. I know as being a "team leader" that when a teacher thinks he/she is the king or queen of his castle/classroom, they are not as effective (not a team player....grrrr) as they could be. Hope you enjoy your summer. :-)
72085
Linda Woodard
Posted about 3 years ago
What are 5 things you have learned that has completely changed your life?
Yes, Fonkou, that is exactly what I think you should do. There are books and articles written already with this same theme (just google: "What I have learned" and you will find them), but what makes yours a bit different (and the "hook") is that your statement also asks that they be life-changing. Look at Ron Gutman's book that was published by TED called "Smile: The Astonishing Powers of a Simple Act" on the Amazon site to see a preview (but you may need to buy it to see totally what I mean). How it is set up is it begins with a personal story and then goes into researched information about smiling and its power. Within that are interspersed personal examples of him again and others (but which I really expected to see way more of). Then it ends with a drawn conclusion. I think this would be a good format for you to use. :-) However, with your examples from here, I think some may need to be asked HOW these things changed their lives and maybe a blurb of who they are, so there are not just continual lists. Now since they are already public, I am not sure if you need permission to use them in another format, so that you will have to research as well. I think too, you could write celebrities or anyone who is famous and I am sure a few will answer you; but be sure to get written permission to use them as well. I don't know, but at times I seem to know what people would find interesting, and that is why I have been successful in the classroom and have successfully helped two of my author friends add some elements to their works when I edited them that they were happy with as well as their readers when they get feedback; and I really think people would want to read something like this as I know I would. However, you can maybe ask some here who already have responded to your thread to see if they concur even though with almost record of the "thumbs up" is telling by itself. :-) What a way this would be for you to make some $$$$ for college. :-)