Sunday, May 28, 2017

The smallest comment can have huge meaning

I heard a small nugget today that really made me think about The Chronicle and MBC staff.  While I know everyone on our teams do what they do for the good of the whole there are times when that may not be the case. Sometimes people start to think they've arrived or progressed at a pace that puts them ahead of others so when I heard this little line squeezed into something I heard at church today I just thought I would share it.  "If you're too big to do the little stuff then you're too little to do the big stuff." Wow, isn't that good.  Think about how everyone is looking for that bold title to put on their resume or that leadership role that will look good on a college application, NHS interview, or whatever.  Sometimes the people that finally get that great zinger that looks good on the application aren't always willing to do the little things that come with it.  The bold print on a resume or a cord at graduation looks really good, but maybe it's the realization that you where willing to do the "little things" that really matter.  Are you willing to help a custodian clean up a mess after you created it or do you think - oh well that's their job? Are you willing to walk around a classroom and push in chairs or pick up after others - or do you just say I didn't make that mess, it's not my problem?  Do you sit around wasting time but yell at out at others that they need to get their jobs done?  Do you model a behavior that goes with the title or the respect you so badly want? We're all guilty of this....right?  But that doesn't mean we can't take small steps to improve - to do the little things because if you're willing to do the little things then when a big thing comes along you'll be equipped to do that too.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

I finished Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow....Finally

I started the book in June of 2016 and finally finished it March of 2017.  Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow was a fascinating book about one of America's most influential founding fathers.  In fact so influential that many of his ideas, concepts, and creations are still impacting our daily lives in 2017.  I have to admit I probably wouldn't have read this book if it wasn't for all the hype surrounding the Broadway Musical Hamilton.  The book was fascinating and so in depth that I can barely go into it in a blog but wow, it was amazing.  Chernow's style is very easy to read and understand.  The book is not for everyone and it is very long.  800 or so pages.  I'm just glad I finally finished it and I'm looking forward to seeing the musical at some point.  Now onto my next read.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Teaching Fake News, it's about time

Fake news is everywhere and now you can take a class to learn how to determine if something is fake or real.  Colleges and high school are getting in on the act, adding classes or units to their lesson plans.
"I think only education can solve this problem," said Pat Winters Lauro, a professor at New Jersey's Kean University who began teaching a course on news literacy this semester.
Check out the story HERE

Monday, February 13, 2017

Brandon Phillips will be missed, but Reds have to get prospects on the field this season if this rebuild is to proceed as planned

The rebuilding effort by the Cincinnati Reds continues as we get to bid farewell to one of the best 2B to ever play in a Reds' uniform.  While I still think Joe Morgan is the best to ever play the position for the Reds and in the big leagues, Phillips has been a great Red. He's played through injury, he doesn't make excuses, he plays with passion, and he's been willing to bat wherever a Reds' manager has penciled him in - he has also embraced the opportunity to be a part of the Cincinnati community. He was good for at least one top ESPN highlight a week.  He should have won more Gold Gloves. He's shown up at little league games, area high school games, and is always accessible on twitter. Now Reds fans get to watch another year of the rebuild - I'm not sure how long this rebuild is going to last but I hope it's not too much longer and I hope BP can get another shot in the post season. He's a Cincinnati Reds Hall of Famer.

Shout-out to Abbey THE MARSHALL PLAN blog

Journalism is changing but people's desire to get the news is not.  Abbey Marshall, former Chronicle editor is embracing the opportunity to feed the modern news consumer.  Her blog is packed each week with news on the campus of Ohio University.  She's constantly tweeting and blogging.  I like the way I don't have to wait for Abbey's stories - she's gives me a "heads up" before the story comes out because she tweets some information to get in the loop before the story comes out.  You've gotta check out The Marshall Plan.  (I think I might have given her the suggestion for this blog title.)

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Don't forget about art and creativity

I know that without the field of science we wouldn't be living in an age where diseases are being cured, new materials for manufacturing invented, and advances are being made in nearly all facets of our daily lives.  I'm also in big favor of introducing young people to the world of science.  But what is worrying me is that in the focus to shed light on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) we are losing site of creativity and the arts.  You don't have to look far to find tweets and promotions from area school districts championing the cause of STEM, but you have to dig dip to find a picture of a young artist who is discovering a new way to express themselves through water color or sculpture.

While I know we need to continue to push our minds with scientific discovery we also need to consider that artists are people too.  In fact many of our scientists are probably harboring creative innate abilities.  But let's give some 'pub' to the creatives, the artists, the singers, the fashion designers, the film producers, the 'yet to be named' genres.

In a recent edition of Scientific American the editors wrote:
"Promoting science and technology education to the exclusion of the humanities may seem like a good idea, but it is deeply misguided. Scientific American has always been an ardent supporter of teaching STEM: science, technology, engineering and mathematics. But studying the interaction of genes or engaging in a graduate-level project to develop software for self-driving cars should not edge out majoring in the classics or art history."
This discussion over the shift to STEM led Chronicle staff writer Ria Parikh to focus on this topic. Ria was led to take a closer look at this subject after seeing tweets promoted by the school district that draws attention to the topic.  I agree, it is amazing what our students are discovering, the incredible teachers who are helping guide that discovery, the amazing young scientist who has captured national attention, and especially a district that fosters a learning environment where anything is possible.

In Ria's article she made sure to talk with science teachers. It was refreshing to hear from an MHS science teacher who is a believer in both science and the arts. In fact he thinks there must be connection between the two because creativity helps stimulate the mind.  There is no doubt science teachers are big believers in the arts and creativity and art teachers are benefactors of the scientific mind, but when it comes to exposure, PR, the pub - arts seemed to be getting short changed a bit.

"The need to teach both music theory and string theory is a necessity for the U.S. economy to continue as the preeminent leader in technological innovation. The unparalleled dynamism of Silicon Valley and Hollywood requires intimate ties that unite what scientist and novelist C. P. Snow called the “two cultures” of the arts and sciences."

Innovation might be the key word in this discussion.  The artists I've come across at MHS are innovators.  They have amazing minds that challenge boundaries,  there's no doubt there's some inner scientist at work there.

"Steve Jobs, who reigned for decades as a tech hero, was neither a coder nor a hardware engineer. He stood out among the tech elite because he brought an artistic sensibility to the redesign of clunky mobile phones and desktop computers. Jobs once declared: “It's in Apple's DNA that technology alone is not enough—that it's technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our hearts sing."

I hope our scientist out there aren't taking this the wrong way.  I think science is cool. I wish I would have been exposed to scientific discovery at a younger age.  I'm glad my children have been exposed to it.  I have a family member who is a neuroscience graduate. Another who is studying the science that drives the logistics and supply chain industry that is driving our global economy. Another who is immersed in the world of graphic design using the latest scientific advances in computer software, and another whose favorite activity is his school's engineering club. However, all of them love books, movies, music, plays, theatre, and the occasional Netflix binge.
"The way to encourage high-tech industry to move to Kentucky—or any other state—is not to disparage Voltaire and Camus. Rather the goal should be to build a topflight state educational system and ease the way financially for students from even the most humble backgrounds to attend. The jobs will follow—whether they be in state government or in social media start-ups."

Arts and creatives this is on us, we need to make sure we continue to encourage the creatives and shout it out to the masses. Any thoughts on a creative twitter handle....oh yeah, I think I'm going to need an artist for that one - oh and we'll need a scientist to help us figure out the coding algorithms that are needed to program our Twitter feed.  

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Election Fatigue, it's a real thing

Are you sick of the election, campaign 2016 yet?  If you are, it appears you are not alone.  Election Fatigue is a real thing and according to some reports people were already feeling it back in July.  So now we're just about week away from the end of history's most humorous reality TV show (Clinton v Trump 2016).  I'll just be glad when this whole thing is over.  I hope the transition to whoever wins is peaceful.

In July, Pew Research Center reported that “most Americans already feel election coverage fatigue.” July! More than three months ago. And in those three months, it’s safe to say that no one has gotten any respite. The news cycle has churned forward, the conversations have devolved, and the fissures revealed by the primary elections have turned into gaping crevasses.This week, Pew published a new report, positing that people are so tired of talking about the election that they won’t even argue about it on social media (and people will argue about anything on social media). According to the research, twice as many social media users report being “worn out” than those who actually like seeing political discourse online.
Oh, yeah. You've gotta love this picture.  When you see Hillary and the Donald ragging on each other. Check out this photo.  Do they really hate each other? Hillary seems to have an awfully big smile on her face there.  Bill gets the joke too.  "Build that Wall!"

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Some great scenes from movies about the "News" - watch 'em and have a little fun

There's a lot of good movies out there about journalism, news, and the new business.  I thought I would share some scenes from some that I have enjoyed. If I've left one off, please let me know so I can check it out or share it. 
This is a great scene from the movie Broadcast News.  This 1987 movie captured the inner workings of the network news.  In this scene Aaron finally gets the chance to anchor the evening news. Even though he prepared for the anchor spot, things started go wrong.

Ron Burgandy said ESPN would never work.  Check out his audition for SportCenter.

Woodward and Bernstein dig through evidence at the Library of Congress.  This clip is from the movie "All the President's Men." They didn't have Google.  They needed good old fashion shoe leather to track down the story of Watergate.

This is the opening for HBO's the Newsroom.  This was a great series created by Aaron Sorkin. I think this opening is great.  Check out all the historic file footage of America's founding journalistic fathers. Gives me chills.

This scene from "Spotlight" is incredible.  Mark Ruffalo's portrayal of Boston Globe investigative reporter Mike Rezendes is amazing.  After watching this movie I wonder how many people realized how important journalists are to this country?

"The Insider" is probably one of the best movies about broadcast news that you've never seen.  This movie details 60 Minutes producer Lowell Bergman's attempt to get a story aired that would tell the truth about what goes on behind closed doors at big tobacco.
If you know anything about the news business you know Edward R. Murrow is probably the man who laid the foundation for where television news is today.  I'm not sure he would be that happy with the direction of some of our news outlets but this is a great scene from the movie "Good Night and Good Luck."

Friday, September 23, 2016

Chronicle alums not making the news but covering it at O.U.

Another proud moment for Chronicle alums.  Writer/Reporter Abbey Marshall and photographer Blake Nissen reported on the events at OU after recent on campus hate speech incidents.

Ohio University student organizations devise plan of action in response to graffiti wall images

Notice Abbey's byline and Blake's photo credit
 Nice job Abbey and Blake

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Abbey Marshall just made my day, but I'm a little jealous

Abbey knows I'm a "Spotlight" fan so last night when I got a notification to check a blogger I follow I was thrilled to see this post from The Marshall Plan. Abbey got the chance to listen to Washington Post executive editor Marty Barron in her freshman Journalism 1010 class at Ohio U. If you're a "Spotlight" fan you know Marty Barron was the courageous editor of the Boston Globe during the 2002 Spotlight Investigation of the sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.  What a great experience for Abbey and an amazing blog post, complete with links to the topics she references.