Schedule for this Semester



Hi everyone!

We wanted to update you with the dates of our meetings so you could set you calendars!

  1. February 15th
  2. March 22nd
  3. April 19th

Keep on the lookout for our special events! These dates are also listed in the meetings tab above!

Week 2 Reading Options

For my Week 2 reading options, I was drawn to the stories about women for some reason, mostly because I don;t tend to think about women in mythology and biblical stories during this time period.

source: Women in Folklore

The first stories I chose are about the women saints of the Golden Legend. I thought this was interesting because it relates back to art and religion which i study in my other areas. I also thought it was interesting because Women Saints especially do not get talked about a lot in this time period.

The second and third reading that I would potentially be interesting in doing are the Cupid and Psyche and The Bible Women. I read another storybook for the other assignment about biblical women and found it super interesting so I might like to do that one. I also thought that the love stories of Cupid seemed like something that would be fun to read.

Storybook Favorites

I was very intrigued by the expansive and variable list of titles for this assignment. The mix of modern and classical titles were surprising to me. So I chose to do my readings over “Zeus and His Three Ladybirds”, “Gossip Girl: The Dirt on Hawaii’s Elite”, and “E! True Hollywood Story: Women of the Bible.” I chose these because I really like the way that they were creative and played to my interests: I love E! and Gossip Girl.

source: mischief circus

The first story “Zeus and His Three Ladybirds” tells the tale of a psychiatrist forced to pick the lover of the God Zeus in three intense counseling sessions. The story incorporated the classical Greek gods in the modern setting of therapy which I thought was super playful and written very well. In the end, the Grace stands up to Zeus and calls him out for his misogynistic and archaic ways. While she was fearful that he would obliterate her, he instead asks her on a date.

Next I read “Gossip Girl: Dirt on Hawaii’s Elite.” I must first say that I really enjoyed the overall aesthetic of this site and the graphics the author used. The story itself was modeled off the TV show Gossip Girl and told the rumors and sightings of Hawaiian Elite and legends. While the stories themselves had good and interesting information, I didn’t find them as colorful or well written as some of the other stories. I think it could benefit from some scene-setting and descriptive detail.

The final story I read was the “E! True Hollywood Story: Women of the Bible.” The stories were well written and included a lot of good dialogue, which I liked. But I think it wasn’t as creative as say, the Zeus stories. I really liked the use of images to help place the women and the narrative strength of the stories however.

Academic Technology Expo 2017

Man holding a spinning sparkler with a long exposure to appear like a network of sparks.

Friday, January 13th was the sixth annual Academic Technology Expo (ATE) at the University of Oklahoma. ATE is one of my favorite local conferences because there’s an emphasis on instructors presenting the tools they are using in their classrooms. This helps me gage and pursue various technologies and use cases that interest faculty. Not to mention, ATE keeps me informed about many of the technology initiatives throughout OU classrooms.

This year’s ATE was especially notable between a day (Jan 12th) focused on OU’s new Innovation HUB followed by a day (Jan 13th) filled with phenomenal presentations and the wonderful Keynote speaker, Gardner Campbell!

Telling ATE Stories Through Twitter

The tweets that follow are intended to represent a snapshot of my experience at ATE. They have been curated from the #OUTechExpo stream and will include various individuals. In other words, this post also acts as a “recommended to follow these awesome people” post. Anyways, I’ll try to limit myself to ~5 tweets per session—here we go:

Drupal as a Collaborative Classroom Tool
Students Creating and Sharing Online Annotations through Hypothesis
Wiki EDU - Wikipedia Articles as Course Assignments
Keynote: An Insite-Oriented Education
Making Games for the Classroom with Twine
Students as Makers of Educational Games


My favorite part of ATE was presenting alongside Lauren and Julie on some of the curriculum they’ve implemented/are developing for their courses. Lauren built a text-based game with her students around the choices immigrants and asylum seekers face. This activity intended to engage Lauren’s students in both research and creative writing that could be showcased outside of the classroom. I love this project because Lauren had her students reflect on every choice they made while developing the game, Sanctuary. What an opportunity for her students to see the world through another individuals point of view and empathize with people immigrating to the United States.

Julie also has a terrific choose-your-own adventure game development activity she intends to implement in her Fall 2017 course around Spanish literature. For Julie’s students, they will practice their language skills while writing plausible, alternative ending to pieces of literature. Checkout the example Julie developed for her students, Las medias rojas, during her participation in eXperience Play. My favorite quote Julie said about why she’s pursuing this activity is that she had “fun” developing her own text-based game and wants her students to have a similar experience in her class.

Sanctuary Cover
Las medias rojas Cover

I felt spoiled at ATE since it was my second time to hear Gardner Campbell speak in the last three months (shoutout to #OpenEd16!) He was phenomenal. What resonated with me from his talk is his portrayal of the internet as a network where everyone is connected, but no one entity is in control, as well as his call to action that we should always be intentional when implementing technologies into the classroom. To me, these are two ideas that drive some of the curriculum and professional development I design. Honestly, it’s hard to put into words much of the inspiration Gardner propagates, so I will differ to the soon-to-be-released video of his talk. I highly encourage you to listen to his encouragement (when it’s posted). Thank you Gardner Campbell!

PS. Gardner Campbell invited us to his Open Learning Connectivist MOOC that starts this week. I wanted to extend the same invitation to you. 🙂

Finally, due to the threat of inclement weather, ATE possessed a high concentration of passionate educators willing to brave the potential of freezing rain. Thus, from learning about Drupal to facilitate collaborate research in the classroom, to engaging students in discussion using group annotations with, and scaffolding the writing of academic papers with Wikipedia articles, ATE was comprised of some fantastic sessions. I love seeing the results of passionate instructors and the technologies they utilize. Here’s to another great year of learning alongside them.

The featured image is provided CC0 by Riley McCullough via Unsplash.

The Weeks from 1/9 – 1/22 on OU Create!

In the week before school started back for the Spring, we saw a slate of blog posts about Winter travel and study abroad. This past week, as students returned to classes, the OU Create community made 370 posts. Users made plans for more productive years, reconsidered their class management, and thought about their evolving identities. As always, we’ve looked through all of them and are proud to present to you… The Best of OU Create for the Weeks from January 9th through 22nd!

And now for the weekly roundup…

Chandler Kidd, a journalism student, wrote about what the Presidency of Donald Trump might mean for Journalism as a field and profession.

Screen shot of Chandler Kidd's blog post on Trump and Journalism

Carolyn Taylor wrote about how being in a sorority fits into her personal brand on digital presence: “I decided that I was going to OWN IT.”

Screenshot of Carolyn Taylor's blog post on owning being a sorority woman

Sierra Abbott wrote about the process of storytelling and the complexity of creativity.

Screenshot of Sierra Abbott's post about the complexity of creativity

And a few posts from the faculty…

Prof Theresa Cullen, after much reticence, started coming around to using badges in her courses. She gave six reasons for transforming some of her course assignments into openly badged activities:

  1. It is free
  2. It is public and all things about creativity and 21st century learning is about public display.
  3. It is open and Open is what we should be modeling for our students.
  4. It allows for easier critique.
  5. It provides a public data point for our CAEP
  6. Students can link to it as part of their own portfolio and job application materials.

For more, read here

Screen shot of Prof Theresa Cullen's post on badges in her classes

OU Provost Kyle Harper, by day a mild-mannered historian of disease, wrote a fascinating history of smallpox. Using a combination of historical texts and modern forensic studies, Dr. Harper gives an overview of smallpox and smallpox-like diseases in the ancient world.

Screen shot of Kyle Harper's blog post about the history of smallpox

Colin Rhinesmith posted a link to the new FCC report “Strategies and Recommendations for Promoting Digital Inclusion,” which he contributed to. Read more on the report and Dr. Rhinesmith’s research here.

Screenshot of Colin Rhinesmith's blog post on the new FCC report on digital inclusion

New Year, New Team!

Meet the 2017-2018 OU FORUM Team:

Spring 2017 Team Retreat, OU Writing Center

Left to Right: Amanda Awad (Media), Kelsey Morris (Student Section), Lucy Mahaffey (outgoing Editor in Chief), Eddy Mee (incoming Editor in Chief), Erin Tabberer (Media), Moriah Hayes (incoming Managing Editor), Nicanor Wolieu (Events/Video), Nayyifa Nihad (Student Section), Alexandra Goodman (outgoing Managing Editor), Rachel Whitfield (Marketing), Miranda Koutahi (Professor Section)

Not Pictured: Cassie Watson (incoming Poetry/Prose Editor), Shulie Son (incoming Art Editor) Danielle Wierenga (outgoing Art/Poetry editor), Olan Field (Alumni Section)

The post New Year, New Team! appeared first on FORUM.

Monday, January 23

Today is Monday. Week 1 is now over... and Week 2 has begun. The new week's topic in the Myth-Folklore class is Classical and Biblical stories, and in Indian Epics you'll be starting the Ramayana. You can find the week's assignments at the Class Calendar.

Class Procedures and Reminders

Orientation. Make sure you finish up any missing Orientation Week assignments during the grace period this morning. If you did an assignment but are missing the Canvas Declaration, let me know. You need to complete all the Orientation Week assignments so that you will be ready for Week 2!

Introductions. I hope you all enjoyed getting to comment on people's Introductions and stories this weekend, and you'll be getting visitors to your Introduction all semester long with the new blog groups each week. I hope to leave my own comments on everyone's Introductions by the end of this week.

Project Stack. As people turn in project assignments starting with Week 2, I'll be update the stack so you can be sure I got your assignment while you wait for comments back from me: check the stack to make sure I received your assignment.

The following items are for fun and exploration:

Reading. It's another quote from Games of Thrones: A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one.

Creativity. I highly recommend this strategy: When life gets complicated, choose to create.

Words from India. You might be surprised to find out this word comes to English from India: SHAMPOO.

Featured Storybook. This project is from the Indian Epics class: Journey of Festivals. Travel and learn! This Storybook will tell you all about Rama Navami, which is the festival of Rama's own birthday, along with the holiday of "Onam" in which King Mahabali returns to Kerala for every new year, and "Gudi Padwa," a celebration of Brahma's creation of the world.

Free Book Online: Today's free book is Eve's Diary and Extracts from Adam's Diary by Mark Twain. See the Freebookapalooza blog for links and the table of contents. Yes, this is the same Mark Twain who wrote Huckleberry Finn, and he makes great use of the diary style for a new take on Adam and Eve.

Words of Wisdom: Today's saying is It is not good that man should be alone (a Biblical proverb). Find out more at the Proverb Lab. The words come from the Book of Genesis, 2:18. For those of you who have studied Greek: οὐ καλὸν εἶναι τὸν ἄνθρωπον μόνον.

Video: The video for today is Aeneid Book IV. The founding epic of ancient Rome, Vergil's Aeneid, is not on the reading list for class, but this wonderful performance by Wilfrid Stroh can give you a sense of what an ancient Latin poetry performance might have sounded like.

Growth Mindset: Today's growth mindset cat is ready to unlock the new semester: Make things happen. You can find out more at the Growth Mindset blog.

Event on Campus: Come to 311 Robertson Hall at noon today for a workshop on New Year’s Disillusions: "find out why resolutions do not work and learn how to develop healthy habits for long-term change" (details). Find out more about this and other events at the Campus Calendar online.

January 23: Charles Kingsley. Today marks the anniversary of the death of the scholar, writer, and social activist Charles Kingsley in 1875; you can find out more about his life and career at Wikipedia. One of his best known books is a retelling of ancient Greek mythology, which you can read free online: The Heroes: Or, Greek Fairy Tales; some editions have illustrations by T. H. Robinson:

Check out the Twitter stream for information and fun stuff during the day, or click here for past announcements.

Growth Mindset

Carol Dweck’s TEd talks and other videos about growth mindset, self improvement, and realizing our potential. The idea of a growth mindset is that a person isn’t intimated and deterred by a challenge or a task that seems out of their comfort zone, but is able to expand their skills and learn from their mistakes. Dweck takes this a step further and establishes this concept in human biology.

I really like the way that she equates this concept to grades and validation because I think the way the education works nowadays destroys growth mindsets.



Time Management

Time management has always been a point of contention in my life. Especially when it comes to schoolwork, I procrastinate like no other. Because of that, I chose to do my reading this weekend on procrastination.The title of my reading was “Four Questions to Help You Overcome Procrastination.” I found the article very helpful because it broke down procrastination in simple steps to help you evaluate ways to combat it as opposed to just avoiding your work. Th first step was to find a small way to get started, then to make things a priority each day.