Friday, August 7, 2015

Life Is Meant To Be Epic - A Reflection on Fatherhood, Teaching and Life

Here's the transcript of the video:

It was about eight years ago when the alarm woke me up at 3 in the morning. Except, it wasn’t an alarm. It was a newborn baby and I couldn’t calm him down. I remember turning to the computer and realizing that I still needed to finish an assignment for my master’s class.

I remember thinking, “Life will be better when this phase is over.” When we have more money. When the kids are older. When I have a master’s degree.
 But as my son calmed down and fell asleep on my chest, I realized something. Life wouldn’t get any better. Life couldn’t get any better. Easier, perhaps. More orderly, maybe. But not better. Because nothing could be better than this.

I’ve been thinking about that moment and that lie that sneaks into my life . . . the one that starts with “life will be better when ______.” I think it comes from this mistaken notion that a “better” life is the one with more comfort. It’s the idea that life is meant to be a vacation – and that if I just do the right things now I can relax later.

See, it works something like this: When you are in high school, you can’t wait until college and then you can’t wait to get married or start a career and then you can’t wait to have money or a house and then you have kids and you can’t wait for the kids to get older and then you can’t wait to retire and then, at some point, you grow older and you can’t wait at all. You’ve run out of waiting.

But what if that’s not how life is supposed to work? What if life is meant to be a story? Not just any story. It’s meant to be an epic story. The good life is one with a real conflict that requires courage. It’s meant to have characters that you love and couldn’t imagine losing. It’s meant to be grounded in a setting where you feel the grass beneath your feet and you know that you have a place where you belong. It’s meant to be lived with bold themes.

The beauty with epic stories is that they aren’t comfortable. They aren’t easy. They are forever riddled with conflict and with imperfect characters. But they are also filled with everything that makes life worth living: passion, love, courage, purpose.

Don’t get me wrong. Vacations are fun. There’s nothing wrong with a break. But life isn’t found there. Life is meant to be epic.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Design Thinking Videos

The following is a short video series explaining the ins and outs of design thinking. They are a part of the free course Getting Started with Design Thinking.

Introduction: We Need Creative Classrooms

What Is Design Thinking?

Stage One: Awareness

Stage Two: Inquiry

Stage Three: Research

Stage Four: Ideating and Planning 

Stage Five: Prototyping

Stage Six: Testing and Revising 

Stage Seven: Launch and Market