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Education and why I'm frustrated with institutions  RSS feed

 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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So for me; School totally wasn't worth it. I felt so damn ripped off for so many reasons. Still do. But I don't have grudges. Why? Internet.

Anyway, I have some more permaculture thoughts - but with no pictures and coming up on dead ends on where to post I've settled into some of my other areas of study. I thought I'd share how I go about self educating. It's harder with somethings - like food production - because you need actual hands on experience - but for armchair interests its really really easy if one can find a subject one is interested in, some good easy to understand source material, and a little bit of time and dedication.

Here's an example of how I work and then I'll shut up and get to it.

I have basically been forced into being interest in law and governance. It is pretty interesting, so I'm not too too bitter, though I defiantly wish I could have spent my time on other more valuable things. I am also interested in Language. About two years ago I decided to start teaching myself Russian as a companion to my law.

For law, I started at the obvious place. My state Constitution;

http://leg.wa.gov/LawsAndAgencyRules/pages/constitution.aspx

If you live in the united states you have one too. I'll guarantee that.

At the same time I started reading the Russian Federations constitution (in english) and learning Cyrillic.

http://www.constitution.ru/en/10003000-01.htm

http://www.russianforeveryone.com/RufeA/Lessons/Introduction/Alphabet/Alphabet.htm
http://www.omniglot.com/writing/russian.htm


Now I'm bouncing back and forth between state constitution of WA, and the Russian Federations in both English and Russian. Even though I don't understand most of the worlds in Russian I can read them aloud as if it where english. Well not quite. But getting there. Progress!

http://www.constitution.ru/10003000/10003000-3.htm

Lately I've been watching cartoons (thanks Olenka!) and continuing to make word lists. Maybe someday I'll be brave enough to try to start up a web conversation with a native speaker. Who knows but slowly and surely... at my own pace... for 60$ a month....

BOOM

EDUCATION

I don't know. I think the internet is awesome! Way better than a formal institution for at least 60 percent of learning. More than 80 percent at the undergrad level.

What about others? What are some cool things you have taught yourself using free resources?
 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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Also, I must stress in self education. Patience. Patience. Repetition. And not setting goals too too high. I for instance, have absolutely no desire in going into international law. Sounds like way lots work. And boring. My Uncle did that. very well. He make a living dealing with big city medical stuff. Totally not my thing.

Me? My goal? I want to be able to cover this dudes songs. It's a hell of a goal. Dude was a master poet.

http://www.letsloop.com/artist/aleksandr-baslacev/song/song-of-rusty-water
 
Zach Muller
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I taught myself to play guitar and produce music.. But also went to get a bachelors degree in those topics. Once I got to know the institution up close I no longer had much interest in making music the primary thing I did in my life. I wasn't salty though because I had learned so much during my years in college. I learned some from the institution, but learned more just from my experiences at that time and went through what amounted to massive changes in perception and awareness.
I taught guitar lessons for a living for a few years and learned very much about people, specifically the limits they place on themselves and how those self imposed limits will control their capabilities in the end.

So what did I end up doing? Going back to school for another degree! Haha most people just shake their heads and laugh at what an irresponsible fool I am, but really there is not much of another way if you want to work as a scientist, engineer, physicist etc. OFFICIALLY anyway. So maybe I am a decently smart idiot who is just attracted to the process of education.

More recently I learned how to repair a dryer from YouTube videos.

I will also have to agree with you on stressing self education. If I think I have learned anything in my years of searching it is that the only learning out there is self learning. There are ways to squeak by in an institution without truly learning anything they are presenting, and there are ways to learn without an official program or timeline.
I have noticed a lot of people get stagnant when they engage in self learning and the overall direction of study is unknown, which slows down the process. In order to combat stagnation I have always told myself I have to be in the proper position to do something. If there is an unattainable goal be it in playing guitar, gardening, anything, you have to put yourself in the proper place or these impossibilities will remain impossible.
I also have thought that people's biases are what prevents productive self education.

Education is really another word for programming, and in order to program yourself with new information you must recognize the old program for what it is first, and also recognize that you can program your own mind with information of your choosing. Otherwise any self education will really be a permutation of the programming you received as a child, and not really education.

For example if I am programmed to have a very specific belief of some kind, if I go out on an information seeking mission I very well might find only the information that supports my programming, and makes me feel ok. My own mental program will have guided me away from information that would dislodge it and replace it. Comfort is a huge player for the mind and at its core I think new info and programs interrupt a general mental comfort. This is a typical dead end in self education from what I have observed.
 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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Thanks for your additions Zach,

Really insightful and I totally agree.
 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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I went to school to study the modern middle east. There was no coherent lesson plan, leadership, or vision.

4 books are necessary to understand the modern middle east.

No wait. That's the biggest lie I've ever told.

BUT...

I only got one of them. I payed several thousand dollars for books. I now have almost 3 of the 4 I referred to in above.

William L. Cleveland - A history of the Modern Middle East -- Had to discover this one myself. Thanks book bunker.

David Nicolle - Historical Atlas of the Islamic World --- This one is a kids book. A really good kids book. Like a 4th grader. This was what I paid tution to have recommended to me. No guidance. No spontaneously organizing peer studies. Nada.

Elias' Modern Dictionary - Arabic to English -- I have the other one... English to Arabic, A gift

The Koran --- Me being me I'm pretty sure their be a swat take down if I purchased this book

Anyway. Fuck Universities. They milk humans for money. They need way stricter oversight. They are not doing their job. They have not been doing their job. It's a public trust and general welfare issue.
 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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Landon Sunrich wrote:I felt so damn ripped off for so many reasons. Still do. But I don't have grudges. Why? Internet.


And fucking amazon is so fucking whack. I hate these guys sometimes. So much.

http://www.amazon.com/Historical-Atlas-Islamic-World-Nicolle/dp/1904668178

This product description could not be more wrong or deceiving. The photos and maps in this book tell way more than the words and it's a pretty lenghty (but informative) read.

Addition: The maps and photos show the depth of the history very clearly... Like even pack a hundred million years if you want to talk about the oil resourse map. But this one has it all. Cultural centers. Everything. In maps. And photos.

It's a giant print.

@ ten dollars?

Fuck I don't understand economy. Like it has the world eco in it. It's a contradiction in terms just based on spelling. I want that word banned!


Band?

Seriously though,

College is lame.

Almost no-one has any of their shit figured out and it reflects in these institutions.
 
Dave Burton
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I taught myself how to propagate plants through vegetative reproduction with this YouTube video. My woody live oak cuttings perished. For a while I had saved some mint, oregano, and sage from dying by rooting the cuttings with honey. All three of the original plants were in a single container together and killing each other- bad idea. I took as many cuttings as I could and rooted them. I planted some of the rooted cuttings in a corner in our backyard. I am hoping the mint will take over the lawn and destroy the grass!!! Mwahaha! Probably won't happen, but a few survived getting attacked by herbicides. Most of the other cuttings ended up dying of neglect after break had ended.

Two years ago, I taught myself to crochet using DIY.org, and I plan to use them to learn more skills next summer, hopefully. From there, I made two-ish hotpads; I say -ish because the stitching was terrible when I was first getting the hang of it. Then, I made one beanie-hat which came out pretty nice, and I made one glove that was OK. OK because I read about some new stitches that I can do and used the glove as a place to test a bunch of things out on. Then, I decided to try loom-knitting which was pretty fun, too. Loom-knitting is much quicker than regular knitting. I did try knitting for a while, but I found it too tedious and prefer crocheting.

Now, I am currently using Duolingo to practice German in my off-time and a little bit of Spanish.
 
Michael Cox
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Location: Kent, UK - Zone 8
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I have recently been signing up for some paid-for courses through Udemy.

I think this is the way a lot of skill based learning will go. You sign up for specific courses as and when you need them - short, sharp and sweet.
 
Landon Sunrich
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Location: Western Washington
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Yeah, Dave -

This is pretty much the best video I've seen on this subject and it's a subject I can totally rant on about. I'm out of apples but anyone on permies seeing that above youtube embed should click it. It is why we're all here after all.
 
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