My Flag on the Moon

One of my favorite parts of this class so far has been the claiming of my own piece of the internet…my own website. It is my favorite part because out of my own work or skill I put it on the web.

My parents recently asked me what I was doing in my classes.  I believe we all remember these types of questions from our high school days. Common replies included “Nothing” or “Just the same stuff, it was boring” as I rushed for the couch after school.  Yet, when my parents called last week, I had a different answer: I was learning something exciting, I was learning the skill of basic web-making.  I could also give them a definite sign of my work, I gave them the link to my website.

My math teacher always used to stress that he was trying to have us learn HOW to do something, not simply memorize material.  Well in high school, I got good grades, by simply memorizing material for the next upcoming test or quiz.  I believe that is why I loved to learned how to use Dreamweaver or how to solder.

It is the learning of skills that makes this class exciting. I do not believe any of us have ever been part of a class quite like this. I know I also have classes in which I cram like crazy the night before just to be able to regurgitate the information the next day on the exam.  This class and the maker culture as a whole stress the understanding of skills, whether that be concise writing or we making, something my analytical mind appreciates.

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5 Responses to My Flag on the Moon

  1. Vicster says:

    I totally agree with you! This class is unlike any I have ever taken before and I really enjoy learning about the maker culture and learning to do things I’ve never done previously before0 like solder and make a website. My art class last year was the only other class I have ever taken that was even somewhat close to this this, but it was different in how we only learned about the crafting side of things and not the history or social aspects of art. To me at least, this class combines learning how to do tings with our hands (like an art class), about the secular aspects of creating things and sharing them, and then the writing and composition aspect that helps us better communicate with others in print and on the internet. Although it’s a lot of work, I still find it interesting and worth it, as I have learned about websites like Instructables.com that have given me some awesome creative ideas to try!

  2. marsonze says:

    It seems that the typical “I did nothing at school today” holds true for almost everyone. I never found things I learned in high school all that interesting because like you said we memorized information and then regurgitated it back. Nothing I studied ever struck me as profound or substantial to want to go tell someone about it.

    When I told my parents I learned how to make a basic website they were awestruck because they know how terrible I am with technology. Although my website is far from something to brag about, it is something I can call my own. My website remains at an absolute basic lever, however, because html is such a foreign concept to me, I am still proud that I was able to make something on the web. I am still working out the kinks of the process, but I know that I can figure out how to make everything come together. Making the website work and to have everything turn out the way I want it to look requires much more problem solving than I thought I would have encountered. I have noticed that development of myself in becoming a maker and hopefully my final website reflects upon that.

  3. Anky says:

    FP 0003. Making/Hacking/Composing. I can guarantee you that nothing of what we have completed in class has been explained to its full justice on the Pitt courses website (courses.as.pitt.edu).

    I haven’t learned this much innovative and intuitive things in an English class since…never. I mean, the class is not even over, and it may be because of the accessibilities that Pitt has, however, this class has taught me the aspects of writing and making.

    The class has made me look at my work. Produce something that is worth showing. In English classes in high school, I got grades I was happy with, I had papers I wouldn’t mind showing, but, it was missing something. I don’t know what. But it was that something.

    This class has developed my writing. And my future writing classes will develop my writing. But they won’t achieve the goals that this course have. And that sounds sort of obvious however it is a more remarkable than the words I’ve just typed.

    I have never made a website. Now, I can say I have. I have never made an LED temperature gauge. Now, I can say I have. I have never seen a 3D printer. Now, I can say I have. And I have never seen a teacher that strives to improve students instead of following a grade rubric. Now, I can surely say, I have.

    Maybe I have a bias. It’s my first college english class and it’s the first time I have been able to see a major improvement in my writing. But maybe I don’t have a bias. Maybe it isn’t too good to be true. See, we’ve learned HOW to do things. Not just complete the material, get a grade, and move on.

    It’s more then that. And we will only be able to truly fathom the success this class has produced until we are no more going to class in Thackeray at 6:00 pm every Thursday night.

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