How Finland Keeps Kids Focused Through Free Play

Normally, students and teachers in Finland take a 15-minute break after every 45 minutes of instruction. During a typical break, students head outside to play and socialize with friends while teachers disappear to the lounge to chat over coffee. I didn’t see the point of these frequent pit stops. As a teacher in the United States, I’d spent several consecutive hours with my students in the classroom. And I was…


Baskerville Typeface Generates Trust

The conscious awareness of Comic Sans promotes — at least among some people — contempt and summary dismissal. But is there a typeface that promotes, engenders a belief that a sentence is true? Or at least nudges us in that direction? And indeed there is. It is Baskerville. Believe it or not, the results of this test even show a disparity between Baskerville and Georgia — two apparently similar serif…


4 Skills to Help You Stand Out In Any Job Interview

An employer will never ask you to write a five-paragraph essay, but your employer will expect you to demonstrate the critical thinking skills that you will develop while mastering the college essay. How will you set yourself apart from all the other job applicants who have also passed freshman comp? These are all specific skills I expose my students to through working on their academic weblogs and the online student newspaper.…

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A Robotic Dog’s Mortality

Fascinating video journalism from the New York Times. They didn’t shed, chew the sofa or bite the postman, but for thousands of people Sony’s Aibo robotic dog was the closest thing to a real canine companion. So when the Japanese company stopped servicing the robots last year, eight years after it ended production, owners faced a wrenching prospect: that their aging “pets” would break down for good. —The New York Times

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Hermann Zapf, the font designer behind Palatino and Zapf Dingbats, has died at 96

Hermann Zapf, the designer of fonts such as Palatino, Optima, Zapfino, Melior, Aldus, and the bizarre but much beloved Zapf Dingbats, has died at age 96.The revered German typographer and calligrapher passed away on June 4. In his long and prolific career, Zapf worked on many fonts, but his personal favorite was the humanist sans serif typeface Optima, the lettering chosen for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial wall in Washington, DC. — Quartz

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Time article with clickbaity headline: Web users annoyed by marketing tricks

This Time magazine article is a good one, but that “what you think you know is wrong” headline is more of the same obnoxious clickbait that the article itself critiques, so here’s a bit of what I found useful. Scrolling is more acceptable behavior than it used to be. We’re all much more used to scrolling now, especially when using mobile devices. Just because we click a link doesn’t mean…


The Hidden Benefits Of Daydreaming

When your mind wanders, its like P. T. Barnum putting on a sideshow while the stage is being rebuilt….[P]articipants who did more mind wandering got more creative on the repeated unusual uses tasks; they came up with more creative solutions to the problems presented to them after they had some time to let their brains chew on them, so to speak. The other three groups—the one that performed the cognitively…