About Albert

I'm passionate about

music, movement, math, combining the challenging with the popular

Talk to me about

stories, smiles, walking, experimental music, neuroscience, myth, silence, light, organization of information

People don't know I'm good at

spinning poi

My TED story

I'm currently interning in social media marketing for my local TEDx conference - TEDx Golden Gate ED - which is all about teaching compassion, from all the different sides you can think to approach that topic. I'm very excited to see this conference develop, hopefully becoming an annual event that is surrounded by a community that discusses and acts year round, world round.

Comments & conversations

113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What if the TED Community worked together to build the model 21st century learning environment? What would it look like?
A potential solution path: Recently the idea of placing the burden of engagement on the teachers rather than the students was floated by me. In this approach educators design their curriculum to be as irresistibly engaging as possible, and students always have the ability to opt out and work on something they want to do. (This is in stark contrast to much of our current system,where students must force themselves to pay attention to whatever is being presented to them, or pay for it on the test.) This approach seems that it would reward a nice balance of theory and practice, using the 'authentic context' as Scott put it to personalize to each class and/or even every student. Student input on the path of study is important to keep them interested, and the teacher is actively building the education to match, rather than just following some set plan. A side note: This style may get rid of the 'base of knowledge' that we all supposedly come out of school knowing, but as long as that is acknowledged/accepted, then I don't think there is a problem (especially since it is already true).
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
Maya Beiser: A cello with many voices
I am sorry but, in spite of the accolades, I have to make a point-by-point response: 1. Yes you are entitled to your opinion. Just know it is your own. 2. Yes, many people know overdubbing is an old technique. But it is not often used in a live setting (every day this is less and less true), nor in the classical tradition (ditto), and it does, as she says in her talk (~8:40), give to opportunity to hear a piece with a different drive than we usually do - rather than many musicians trying to share a concept, it is all born from one. This gives a different feel to the interlocking&interaction of the parts (or it is my opinion that it can). Perhaps it is not about the technology, it is about how it is used. 3. You covered this in 1, except this time you might be projecting your opinion onto the audience and/or dissing them. 4. You have to take her actions as authentic and genuine, unless you have good reason to think otherwise. Her performance was full of expressive movement, so this 'big gesture' seems consistent. It would be worse if she faked humility. This is her art (passion!), unless she gives you reason not to, take it (all!) as authentic.
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What if the TED Community worked together to build the model 21st century learning environment? What would it look like?
Excellent observation indeed! Taking student input to direct the course of study could be the future. This guarantees the learners will be engaged with the material, since the want to learn it. Of course being the educator, knowing what you know beyond what the kids know, you can steer the inquiry to some extent, and introduce possible new avenues of study. The first challenge is to start with something that the learners find irresistible, that they want to start engaging with [and always allow them to opt out, to have a quiet space where they can explore something for themselves - this is a new idea I've been considering]. Once they're in, its a cooperative of leading and following [like an ouiji board, haha] between learner and educator, to find a path through whatever topic was begun.
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What if the TED Community worked together to build the model 21st century learning environment? What would it look like?
I agree that the current challenge is scalability. I think this requires thinking about training on the 'teachers' end of things, and the rest of the people that make up the schools infrastructure, which is something that has only recently come to my attention. Good food for thought! Blended learning does seem to be the way to go here, mixing not only academic subjects, but also emotional and social learning. It's a major shift to our normal, categorization-focused approach, and will take some work to re-orient the thinking of the staff of such a school. I think one key thing is to treat children as capable and intelligent, with ideas worth listening to, not just kids who will sit there and learn what one has to say. Not having a system with right and wrong answers, and with set grades, etc, with a focus on book-academic-intelligence is a big change too, but I think it's the way to go as well. It requires teachers to be really engaged: they can't just phone it in with a lesson plan from 4 years ago, instead they have to actively engage and be engaged by the students, constantly adapting to the children around them. Also, I totally agree that our system stinks and anything we do will be better; that fear is not my own, but one I suspect some parents will have. However, I have seen that there are enough parents who agree with our view to make these 'new schools' work. And once others see their success, any fear will be dissuaded. Oh, and 'disruptive' deployment is almost certainly the way to go. Of course, as we have said, he problem is replicating the success... Finally, I'm sure many of you ave seen it, but this RSAnimate, based on a talk by Sir Ken Robinson, was, and still is, a major inspiration for me: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcDGpL4U
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What if the TED Community worked together to build the model 21st century learning environment? What would it look like?
Yes, I think it's a daunting task, but if there are people in the community ready to support such an endeavour, it can happen, with no shortage of hard work. Of course there are the very real barriers of finding that support, both people-wise and financially, but these are not insurmountable. Finances I can't speak too, but I would like to say this about people: the fear I would have is that parents would not want to risk their children's future, gambling them in some untested, non-traditional form of education. I imagine parents asking questions such as "Will the kids learn all that is important?" and "Will they be able to function at the next level of schooling?". As it turns out, (in the case of the communities where these schools/programs exist) there are plenty of parents who feel as we do, that the existing educational system is broken and they are looking for one of these out-of-the-box initiatives. So as long as the parents and the new-school school connect, people are no problem.
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What if the TED Community worked together to build the model 21st century learning environment? What would it look like?
This question has been on my mind so much in the past few years. Recently I've seen some exciting things happen! First, SF Brightworks announced its existence, it's space, and more. Brightworks is a totally different take on the education model - different subjects are quite integrated and the kids direct the flow of things with their passion. Here's a link to their website linking to one of their TEDx talks: http://sfbrightworks.org/blog/2011/05/20/tedxeast/ I almost thought such a radical move wasn't possible because I hadn't seen it happen. Thumbs up to the "Game School" Quest to Learn, where game designers are behind the curriculum again hoping to get kids passionate about learning. (I see the tag "games as educational tools up there".) The other thing is an upcoming TEDx conference in the Bay Area, California. I'm doing some social media marketing for them, and in the process learning a lot about ways people are trying to integrate compassion into education - a topic we focused on this week in fact on our Facebook page (which I have to link to, since I'm doing social media marketing: https://www.facebook.com/TEDxGoldenGateED ). One of my favourites is the Roots of Empathy program which brings infants and mothers into the classroom periodically over the school year, allowing the students to connect with this tiny being that needs their care, and thus to participate in the rapid development. This idea is just so far out of the box of current school systems, it blew me away. I'm looking forward to getting in depth with this and many other ideas about incorporating emotional and social learning into education. The TEDx GoldenGate ED conference is coming up in just a week, and I believe it will be webcast - stay tuned to http://tedxgoldengateed.org/ for info on that if you're interested. I look forward to this conversation developing!
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
Lets each record one second every day!
I think it's not about summarizing the day; if that is your goal, then yes, 15, 30 secs, a minute, sure, and that'll be an interesting way to look back at a year. Maybe after capturing that, you could edit each to a second, that'd be an interesting [time consuming!] process. But I think the point is to gain a much longer look at things. Things come and go, always changing, and this process and result remind us of that fact. (Also a nice spin on the phrase "live in the moment") The seed of this conversation mentions the inspiration getting a 5 hour video by age 80 - that's already approximately two movies, imagine if it was 60x longer! A great video installation, but not practical to watch in one sitting. One second gives you a moment, and these moments add up to a swirl of life. Who knows what lessons will come of the end result, but it should be an interesting view, and the process of making it brings up all sorts of other interesting questions. . .
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
Reading science fiction for a more critical view of our society?
Simone, I think you summed us some nice thought very well there. I'm currently working on the social media presence of my local TEDx talk - the topic is Teaching Compassion (approached from all the angles you can imagine), and I'm exploring compassion in the arts this week. This is an interesting combination of art and education being discussed. I think Nicholas, you make a great point that "when you practice art, you are thinking," which relates to a workshop I was writing up earlier. The woman who will be running the workshop teaches artistic techniques (I think mostly visual and poetry) to kids, and then gets them to explore the cultural and natural worlds around them, and express their reactions through art. This gets the kids connected to their environment, both the people around them, and nature (/artificial, I imagine), developing their self-confidence and compassion, hence the inclusion in the conference. What I hadn't thought about was that this also develops their critical thinking as well, and that science fiction does this kind of in reverse(?) - it makes us think about our environment critically, which leads to more awareness. To the other point, I've been thinking a lot about how the education system (at least here in the US where I am familiar with it) needs a drastic overhaul, but no one is really sure what that should be. There are a lot of ideas out there, and more every day. I think exploring the interconnectedness of subjects that we see as disparate (like art and science) is definitely important, as is addressing different learning and thinking styles. The "meta-education" mentioned by Simone could be sort of a guide to the world, how to use the knowledge acquired, and (borrowing from sci-fi) imagining what could be important to know for the future. In my remaining space, let me tell you to google the Institute for the Future, and then to plug my TEDx: https://www.facebook.com/TEDxGoldenGateED and http://tedxgoldengateed.org
113654
Albert Hill
Posted about 4 years ago
What kind of power can a film have?
I'm currently helping out my local TEDx with social media presence, but as a result have been getting really into its topic of Teaching Compassion. This week I'm looking at compassion in the arts, and I'm very interested in how film, as the art form that can most closely mimic our own experience, is used to help us understand the views of others. There is a deep emotional connection that we form with the characters onscreen that can drive us to laughter or tears, and through this we build up our internal library of human experiences that let us make sense of our lives and the lives of others. And every now and then there is a movie that leave us speechless and changes us profoundly. I can't say I've had quite the experience that Lindsey had above, but for me, The Fountain left me in that state of stunned(?) thought and I really need to go back and watch it again (luckily not as hard to find as your movies seem to have been). I'd be honoured if you'd join our small but growing community over on the Facebook ( https://www.facebook.com/TEDxGoldenGateED ), but I will also point to this discussion from our page over there. And I have to quickly plug the conference itself, which you can learn about here: http://tedxgoldengateed.org We're hoping to build an online community whose discussion will mirror that of the conference itself, while continuing year-round.