School’s Out Forever: Budget Cuts & College Classes

At some point every semester, students ask about creative writing. They ask if we will get to do any.

And I have to tell them no, that poetry and fiction and dramatic literature are not part of the SLOs, the Student Learning Objectives, for the writing classes I teach.

But there are few, if any, creative writing classes offered. In fact, there are few, if any, creative classes of any kind offered any more.

Tonight a student asked the question. And I said no. He pointed out the video posted on this blog and the argument it makes for creativity.

There’s no budget for those classes any more.

Not enough people think the arts are necessary, important.

I hope you watch Sandra Hunter’s video on the topic of these budget cuts to the arts.

PS She teaches writing at Moorpark College. She’s a poet and she writes plays.

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Lizard vs Modern Brain & Ancient Dilemmas

In her Op-Ed LA Times article “

Ancient brains, modern dilemmas:

writer K.C. Cole explains how “The human species is uniquely equipped to shoot itself in the foot.”

From the article:

“We have at least two brains working together, more or less. The ancient “reptilian” brain is fast, bossy, sure of itself and never shuts up. The modern brain, primarily the cortex, is reflective, slow, conflicted and often defers to its elder. In the time it takes the reflective brain to give you a long-winded lecture on the perils of sweet greasy food, the reptile has you on your second jelly doughnut.”

The question is, will you let the lizard brain keep you from getting the most out of your classes this semester? Or will you listen to your modern brain that can handle the complex problem of delayed gratification?

Welcome Fall Semester Students!

How can it be time for the fall semester to start when summer school was just over and grades just posted?

But it is time–fall semester at Ventura College starts August 16!

Unfortunately, a personal necessity is keeping me from the classroom. I have asked a counselor to step in for me to offer a personal welcome and a very valuable orientation from a counseling perspective. She will also give the students (you?) a link to this blog post to find the first assignment:  to read the first 50 sections of Seth Godin’s pdf “Stop Stealing Dreams.” The sections are short and read quickly. We will be reading the whole pdf.

My summer school students loved reading this and we started the semester with some very lively discussions based on the ideas. I also recommend watching this video.

PS Click on the colored text (turquoise) to get to the links and the Seth Godin pdf.