January 3, 2019: New Year Resolutions

Transcript of the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable: January 3, 2019

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Topic: New Year Resolutions

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Pictures by Beth Ghostraven

What resolutions have you decided on, for your education life in 2019? Will you be using virtual worlds more, or less? Which world will you use? Have you any new goals? Moderated by Sheila Yoshikawa (Sheila Webber outside SL).


Sheila Yoshikawa: Happy 2019! Hi everyone, and welcome to the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable. We meet on Thursdays at 12 noon SLT for an hour. 8pm In UK, 3pm EST. VWER is a forum to educate and inform the community about issues that are important and relevant to education in virtual worlds. This is a public meeting, so we will be keeping and publishing a transcript. The transcripts can be found at https://vwer.info/ The VWER continues to develop a community of educators from around the world. Please join the VWER group here in SL. If you are on Facebook please join our group there http://www.facebook.com/groups/159154226946/. I am moderating today. The topic for this week’s meeting will be: New Year Resolutions – educational ones that is. Let’s start as we normally do and introduce ourselves. As usual we will be in text chat for the whole session.

Stranger Nightfire: hello Suemoon

Sheila Yoshikawa: I teach and research in the Information School, University of Sheffield, UK, and I am lead organiser of VWER. Also I am wearing my new year kimono and hair, 😉

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): Selby Evans, Blogger. The pecan pie murder. A 3D story in first draft for the writer’s workshop

Why am I talking about MUVEs when I am really talking about virtual worlds?

Why a reading assignment is like a treasure hunt. And why it is not.

Social media for the virtual worlds (RiP G+). Summary

Quests and quizzes support in 3DWebWorldz–the three e’s: exercise, engagement, evaluation

Resolutions and How To Break Them

Resolutions and How To Break Them(2)

Will-power and other myths

Beth Ghostraven: I’m Beth Ghostraven, middle school teacher-librarian in RL and owner of the Book and Tankard Pub in Victoria City, Caledon in SL; owner of Ghostraven Professional Attire, classic clothing for educators in SL (http://bethghostraven.com ); Communications Chair for the VWBPE Conference; Communications Chair and Focus Sessions Producer for the ISTE Virtual Environments Network; and unofficial liaison between education groups in SL. For information on events for the educational groups that I work with, see the ISTE VEN Massive Open Online Calendar at http://venetwork.weebly.com/calendar.html ; Twitter: @booklady9 I’ll be taking photos to publish with the transcript and recording this session on video; if you have any objection, please IM me.

Josain Zsun: Josain Zsun aka Budd Turner: currently re-curating Expedition Central in VSTE & Chilbo, when not yelling at kids to get off my lawn.

Sheila Yoshikawa: ooo we should visit when you have recurated, Josain. Hi Marly, we are still at introductions

Suemoon Magic: I am in charge of the reference desk at the Community Virtual Library and a Board member. In real life I am an academic Law Librarian.


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Suemoon Magic


Beth Ghostraven: Hi Marly, and Stranger!

Suemoon Magic: Hi Marly

Marly (Marly Milena): Niela Miller, M.S. Education/Communications- Gestalt therapist, composer, musician, artist, actor, educator, trainer, coach, educational designer, facilitator.  In SL since 2007. Founder: Octagon:Creative Exploration/ Creator of Symbolic Modeling (SymMods) in SL. See www.peoplesystemspotential.com  for more.

Sheila Yoshikawa: Thanks everyone, well, the theme for today is “New Year Resolutions”. I must say that actually I do not normally DO New Year Resolutions. I don’t think you should wait until new year, and – one resolution at a time seems a good idea BUT it seemed an appropriate theme. I was doing a bit of googling and I found some lists of New Year Resolutions for students and some New Year Resolutions for teachers.

Beth Ghostraven: oh great, resolutions that other people think we should make?

Sheila Yoshikawa:I may throw those in to see whether people agree with them as useful lists. I probably ought to have looked up the history of new year resolutions, but I didn’t

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): hello everyone, happy new year, hi Beth

Sheila Yoshikawa: lol yes @Beth

Josain Zsun: I’m still doing good on my 1995 New Year’s resolution to not make any resolutions.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): I don’t mind making resolutions for other people

Beth Ghostraven: haha Selby, same here

Sheila Yoshikawa: lol indeed not Selby. OK one short list was from someone’s blog, these were 5 resolutions for teachers:

  1. Student-Centered Classroom
  2. [try a] New Tech Tool
  3. Stop Giving Homework
  4. Have Fun
  5. Take Care of Yourself

Source: https://alicekeeler.com/2019/01/03/top-5-resolutions-for-teachers-in-2019/

Beth Ghostraven: it’s like summer break–I’ve given up on any lists longer than 1. Sleep in

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): well my new year resolution for my students would be for them to have a great term and make sure they reach all the objectives we set out.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Year’s_resolution

Sheila Yoshikawa: Actually I thought in SL – probably most of those were doing those 5 already? Thanks @selby & yes I am with you @Josain, @Anna, very sensible! Do other people feel like they are already doing those 5 resolutions, also any other examples of resolutions people have for themselves?

Marly (Marly Milena): when you are ready for it, I would like to run a resolution by this group (more specific) and get some consultation.

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): What i have seen for the last semester is, that although i set the objective so the slow learner will grasp the concept, most of them didn’t, so I’m trying a new way this semester

Sheila Yoshikawa: OK Marly, we’ll just see whether any others have some ideas and then go with that. Yes, Anna, just concentrating on the basics often seems hard enough. I was thinking the thing I am sometimes not so good at is the “1. Take Care of Yourself”

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): thank you Sheila.

Sheila Yoshikawa: Actually I do follow this in terms of trying to do things I want to do, but this often results in not getting enough sleep etc.

Beth Ghostraven: Keep in mind that I’m the sort of person who will write a list of things I’ve already done, so I can cross them off :p

Sheila Yoshikawa: Also, @Anna, what sort of objectives/subjects are they

Suemoon Magic: ㋡ me too Beth

Beth Ghostraven: yay Suemoon!

Sheila Yoshikawa: @Beth I think that is a good idea, actually, sometimes we are too hard on ourselves and only write down the things we are struggling to do, not the things we just DO.

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): my objectives are mostly based on the practical aspects of agricultural science, and i use most of bloom’s verb so they could understand better.

Sheila Yoshikawa: so is one of your resolutions finding out WHY they struggle with the objectives?

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): yes

Sheila Yoshikawa: which isn’t so easy to discover!

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): and trying to put it over in a way that they can improve, yeah, that’s very true

Marly (Marly Milena): One of my resolutions for this year is to offer a training to people who work with people in virtual (ie educators, coaches, therapists, group facilitators et at) on how to use my symbolic modeling approach (SymMods) to enhance what they already do and I am wondering whether to separate the groups or put them all together (keeping group size fairly small) ie   Would you get more out of working with varied types of people professionals or would you want to stick to your own thematic group?

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Marly Milena

Beth Ghostraven: Marly, I think working with people from a variety of backgrounds, learning about the same thing, could be interesting

Sheila Yoshikawa: @Marly I would have thought – varied.

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): Marly, can I join in too, because I’m a young teacher and i would love to get views and training for teachers that have been in the system.

Beth Ghostraven: If people complained, you could try a more homogenous grouping.

Marly (Marly Milena): That is my inclination but I thought educators might object! LOL

Sheila Yoshikawa: Also in that, there are different variables like age, nationality etc. that might also affect how you engaged, so just looking at what your area of work/profession was wouldn’t get a homogenous group anyway? So Marly, we have the session here (on the little island above) scheduled for 21 February – is that the kind of thing you will be doing then?

Marly (Marly Milena): Appreciating any of your thoughts!

Sheila Yoshikawa: I was just going to put that on the VWER calendar.

Marly (Marly Milena): Thanks. It will be one little exercise. The training will focus also on being a guide through the process.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): Recommendations from psychology:

  • Do one resolution at a time.
  • Make the resolution in concrete language
  • Set specific goals so that you know when you have met them
  • Be specific with reference to time, place, people.
  • Remember: Nobody does anything in the abstract.

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): sounds great

Marly (Marly Milena): Yes, Selby. That is why I am talking about a specific resolution I have

Sheila Yoshikawa: Yes @Selby, that chimes in with the objectives we have to formulate for our annual staff reviews, we are supposed to make our objectives for the year SMART. I was thinking that that abbual review was actually a bit like new year resolutions, but not fun in any way

Stranger Nightfire: I would think that the more specific the better

Marly (Marly Milena): I always like the feedback of others, especially if you are thinking about doing it!  (Probably three sessions, 1.5 hrs per, every few weeks sometime in spring, with practice with students or clients in between

Beth Ghostraven: Sheila, we have to make SMART goals too, and be evaluated on them.

Stranger Nightfire: not i will do more of x but I will do x behavior 3 times a day

Sheila Yoshikawa:

  • Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
  • Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
  • Achievable (agreed, attainable).
  • Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
  • Time bound (time-based, time limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive)
  • SMART acronym expansion)

Josain Zsun: Called away…Best to All

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMART_criteria

Beth Ghostraven: we have to make SMART goals about what our *students* will achieve, and be evaluated on it.

Sheila Yoshikawa: Thanks Josain!

Marly (Marly Milena): How did I do? LOL

Sheila Yoshikawa: Is it Measurable (lol)

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville):

  • Specific – target a specific area for improvement.
  • Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress.
  • Assignable – specify who will do it.
  • Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved, given available resources.
  • Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.

Marly (Marly Milena): I would state the objective as learning how to guide clientele to use symbolic builds and pictures to gain insight and new perspectives on ideas, values, feeling states, decision-making processes. (Trying to model the steps here….)

Sheila Yoshikawa: having said this I think sometimes you can’t be altogether SMART and stay meaningful e.g. you can’t always “plan” to have a great original research idea, I mean you can plan but you can’t COUNT on it however well you plan

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): Thinker you are explaining this better  than my lecturer at classes

Sheila Yoshikawa: 😉

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): 🙂

Beth Ghostraven: Anna, he’s had a lot more experience than your lecturer :o)

Sheila Yoshikawa: Looking at some of the New Year Resolution lists, they aren’t really very smart e.g. one for teachers starts:

  1.  Stay Positive
  2.  Spice Up Your Classroom Routine
  3.  Build Fitness into Your Curriculum
  4.  Get Your Work/Life Balance in Order
  5.  Give Individual Time & Attention to Students

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): oh

Sheila Yoshikawa: I think “Get Your Work/Life Balance in Order” is Relevant but not Realistic and none of the others apply.

Marly (Marly Milena): For me, it is more useful to work from a specific example to the general concepts.

Beth Ghostraven: (btw I just posted the transcript for the last time we discussed New Year Resolutions here: https://vwer.info/2017/01/12/2017-01-12-new-years-resolutions/)

Sheila Yoshikawa: thanks Beth!

Beth Ghostraven: yw!

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): i think it applies to the school i teach at, because, there is this one teacher once she has a problem at home she takes it out on the students so no one likes her. thanks for the list.

Sheila Yoshikawa: @anna, that’s nasty

Beth Ghostraven: Hi Chan!

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Hello everyone, excuse me for arriving late

Sheila Yoshikawa:

  1.  Get Organized – Work Smarter, Not Harder
  2.  Don’t Let Admin & School Policies Get You Down
  3.  Plan Your Move Up the Pay scale
  4.  Set Goals & Avoid Autopilot Mode
  5.  Get Students Involved/Empowered
  6.  Make Better Use of Planning
  7.  Dress to Impress Yourself

http://www.teachhub.com/top-12-new-school-year-resolutions-teachers that’s the rest of the list, and the link

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Sheila Yoshikawa

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): it is, but she was recently suspended

Sheila Yoshikawa: oops! @Anna

Sheila Yoshikawa: we are sharing new year resolutions, or the fact that we don’t make them

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Lovely list, Sheila

Sheila Yoshikawa: and I’m sharing some resolution lists I found

Beth Ghostraven: I make resolutions, but I try not to be too obvious for fear of scaring them away

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): hopefully she has a change of attitude #NewYearResoulution

Sheila Yoshikawa: “Dress to Impress Yourself ” – do you think that’s easier in SL than the physical world?

Marly (Marly Milena): and I am trying to use a specific resolution to get responses re the general directives,but that is not working very well

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): in RL it’s easier for me

Sheila Yoshikawa: Though actually although I start with dressing in a way that feels like me, I do modify according to who I’m teaching and how they are likely to react (in the physical world, not just virtual)

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): I tend to walk around in the same clothes in sl for weeks 😦

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): I am glad to be easily impressed in either world

Sheila Yoshikawa: Sorry, @Marly, I thought we had sort of answered your question?

Sheila Yoshikawa: 😉 @Selby

Marly (Marly Milena): How I present myself in RL tells a story of who I am and what I care about and I would encourage clients/students to also be thoughtful about this. It is carried into SL….artful, textured, comfortable, often painterly….putting stuff together as a creative act. That’s me.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): And I am not at all impressed  by those who judge people by the clothes they wear.

Marly (Marly Milena): @Sheila—I was trying to hook up what I put out with whether I had covered the items on the lists and see how people made correspondences.

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): in rl i tend to use mostly suits for school, my uniform for college and casual just pull together lol, but in sl i just pull together things.

Sheila Yoshikawa: I have accumulated a lot of clothes in the physical world and enjoy deciding what to wear, but I know that for some people clothes are pretty much a bore, and that’s just part of someone’s being, so I hope i don’t make bad judgements about others based on that

Marly (Marly Milena): @Selby—it is quite clear that you don’t care at all about appearances but I must say I got really excited when I saw you one day in a different outfit! LOL

Beth Ghostraven: haha Marly, I remember that day!

Sheila Yoshikawa: though my perspective is that Selby DOES care, it is a deliberate choice I think? a brand?

Anna Trinity (AnikaTrinity592): lol

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Selby belongs to a special sl user, is my opinion, in SC we have a few like Selby, created their avatar years ago as an image of themselves and are proud of it. With good right, Selby ㋡

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Its unique

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): Whatever my outfit it is what serves my objectives — this outfit is my brand — people recognize me in pictures

Sheila Yoshikawa: yes, that is true

Beth Ghostraven: I try to make sure I’m wearing a different outfit for each of these meetings; I’ve even gone back to look at last week’s pics to see

Sheila Yoshikawa: also one of the reasons I keep my hair blue, though in SL that also now just feels like me, “natural” hair colour feels WRONG

Beth Ghostraven: but my basic avi is the same

Sheila Yoshikawa: yes you are recognisable

Beth Ghostraven: (unless I’m a hedgehog, lol)

Sheila Yoshikawa: oh but I recognise that hedgehog too @Beth!

Beth Ghostraven: :o)

Sheila Yoshikawa: “7.  Don’t Let Admin & School Policies Get You Down” just picking out that resolution from the list above – although it also isn’t measurable, I think it’s a good one to reflect on – keeping a balance between what is worth challenging and fighting over, and what you just need to get over because it’s not that big a deal even if it irks you.

Marly (Marly Milena): I quit public high school teaching (many many years ago) because I had reached the limit of how much paper work was required outside of actual teaching.  I just didn’t want to do it any more.

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): I am sorry to hear that, Marly.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): 2 things not to get upset about:  What you can fix and what you can’t fix,

Marly (Marly Milena): I was much happier consulting to educators who wanted to be innovative in their teaching.

Sheila Yoshikawa: @Selby – with things you CAN fix – you just fix them?

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): Right, Sheila

Marly (Marly Milena): That has continued right into my old age in which I mentor people who are yearning to be more creative in how they do their work and how they deal with the systems they are in!

Sheila Yoshikawa: also thinking how teachnology has introduced more admin, really, at the moment there’s an unfortunate thing I’ve had to get involved with , about another class, where there were different dates on the module outline, some slides (uploaded to Blackboard) and on Turnitin where they submit assignments. Like, in the old days, there wouldn’t be so many different places where a date or something would be documented and available to confuse the students. I was also thinking that I should ask my students whether they had new year (class-related) resolutions they were willing to share, especially the distance learners as we use a Google+ board to discuss things in it would be easy to do.

Beth Ghostraven: Sheila, I like that word “teachnology”–was that intentional?

Sheila Yoshikawa: lol no it wasn’t intentional, but I made a new word!

Beth Ghostraven: yes!

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): ㋡

Suemoon Magic: ㋡

Sheila Yoshikawa: bother, googled it and unsurprisingly I’m not the first to use it lol.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): I may steal that word — I write about that a lot

Sheila Yoshikawa: yes, do, I think it is a useful word.

Marly (Marly Milena): @Sheila, it’s like when I thought I had made up the word <creativist> to describe people like me who create in many modalities.

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): http://www.teach-nology.com/ Welcome to TeAch-nology.com. For over a decade, TeAchnology has been providing free and easy to use resources for teachers dedicated to improving the education of today’s generation of students. We feature 46,000+ lesson plans, 10,200 free printable worksheets, rubrics, teaching tips, worksheet makers, web quests, math worksheets, and thousands of other great teacher resources. We are the online teacher resource that is designed to help busy Kindergarten through High School teachers.

Sheila Yoshikawa: I wonder why they capitalise the A?

Sheila Yoshikawa: So, final thoughts about resolutions, including – – can you give someone ELSE a resolution?

Marly (Marly Milena): To emphasize that it is a different word from Technology?

Sheila Yoshikawa: some of the “student” resolutions sound like what teachers think should be students’ resolutions, e.g.

  1. I will say No to Procrastination This Year
  2. I will take One Class out of Syllabus
  3. I will Start Building my own Network
  4. I will Save and Invest Money
  5. I will find my Mentor
  6. I will get Real-World experience with a Job
  7. I will Travel to one New Destination at Least
  8. I will ask more Questions
  9. I will Commit to Improving Myself


Sheila Yoshikawa: @Marly, duh yes of course

Beth Ghostraven: I think my biggest problem with resolutions is that I really dislike the word “should”

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Hey, Dodge ㋡

Marly (Marly Milena): One useful guideline re recognizing you had a resolution in the making is paying attention to your repetitive thoughts in certain arenas.  Usually this indicates some sort of wish or unfinished business.

Dodge Threebeards: Hello, Hallo

Beth Ghostraven: Hi Dodge!

Sheila Yoshikawa: @Beth agree, actually with the list I just posted the emphasis is on the “should”

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): Don’t should all over yourself

Sheila Yoshikawa: @Marly good idea!

Beth Ghostraven: hahaha Selby, well put

Sheila Yoshikawa: though, @Marly, presumably not just getting depressed that you are never going to get anywhere but just be trapped in the repetitive thoughts

Marly (Marly Milena): Another note….the reason that many resolutions fail is that the unconscious often has other ideas about what it wants! LOL

Sheila Yoshikawa: Not sure if I pasted all my lists – possibly not this one

Sheila Yoshikawa: Top 5 New Year Resolutions for Students

  • Wake up early!
  • Devote an hour every day to exercise and physical well-being
  • Read, read and read
  • Explore various opportunities
  • Measure your success with yourself and not by other’s standards


Suemoon Magic: My rl lunch hour is over, I have to scoot.

Beth Ghostraven: tc Suemoon!

Suemoon Magic: Thanks this has been enlightening.

Sheila Yoshikawa: actually that contradicts your much more attractive resolution @Beth “Sleep in”. Thanks Sue

Marly (Marly Milena): I can resolve to exercise on a regular basis because I know it is good for me, but another part just loves being lazy! LOL

Sheila Yoshikawa: lol

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): To get to the root of the will-power story, think about a time when a person is supposed to have will-power. I decide to lose weight. I decide to avoid fattening foods. I find that I do not avoid fattening foods. I explain why I did not do what I supposedly decided to do by blaming my lack of will-power.

This story is really about my language channel. That’s the part of my brain that handles language.  My language channel doesn’t decide what I eat. My language channel just talks about eating. And says what I should do. And complains when I don’t comply.

I have other systems that control what I eat. From their standpoint, my language channel exceeded its authority when it claimed I had decided to avoid fattening foods. Those other brain channels hadn’t bought into that decision. My supposed lack of will-power was really just a demonstration that my language channel can’t decide by itself. My language channel can claim to make a decision, but it can’t enforce it. If I am going to make a decision that works, I need to get all my brain systems on board.

Sheila Yoshikawa: Thanks everyone!

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Thank you all for this short pleasure but I have to take care of rl ㋡

Sheila Yoshikawa: So I resolve that next week we will have an Open Forum

Dodge Threebeards: take care Chant

Sheila Yoshikawa: bring your questions and ideas

ThinkererSelby Evans (Thinkerer Melville): bye everyone

Chantal Jager (Nymf Hathaway): Waves ㋡

Sheila Yoshikawa: That is it for this week!


VWER Meeting Transcripts by Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at http://vwer.info.

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