Novice struggles and expert blindness: How my discomfort with PHP will make me a better instructor

It was my third blank screen. I switched back over to my text editor and tried again. I looked at the format of my PHP, looked at my functions. I looked up the PHP documentation, deleted elements that did not seem right, and saved again. Back in my browser, the screen was still blank. Last…. Continue reading “Novice struggles and expert blindness: How my discomfort with PHP will make me a better instructor”.

Something about PHP

We’ve spent the past month and a half learning PHP. It’s an arduous task only complicated by our own busy schedules. Trying to learn a new language becomes much more difficult when also trying to wrangle sixty undergraduates every week, or finish a dissertation, or find a job. And yet progress continues steadily. The decision…. Continue reading “Something about PHP”.

On the Shelf

The past couple weeks, we have been crash-coursing PHP via Wayne Graham’s surely famous slide decks. We’ve been doing this despite not (yet) delivering our task for the fall semester—the redesign of the Ivanhoe webpage. It’s a necessary shift. While we’re fortunate to be assisted by the Scholars’ Lab dev team—including Scott Bailey, a holdover…. Continue reading “On the Shelf”.

What Could Make Ivanhoe ‘Special’?

Last semester was not bad for our Praxis team. Our achievements were modest but considerable: a charter, a team with a common interest in any activity concerning food, plus a vibrant debate on redesigning the website for our common project – Ivanhoe. While we failed in meeting certain deadlines and charter objectives, i.e. having tangible…. Continue reading “What Could Make Ivanhoe ‘Special’?”.

Can Ivanhoe facilitate playful learning both in and out of the classroom?

You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation –Plato From the beginning of the year, the Praxis cohort recognized ‘play’ as one of the key aspects of the Ivanhoe experience. Yet, how does play shape Ivanhoe? What are the effects of this play? In previous years,…. Continue reading “Can Ivanhoe facilitate playful learning both in and out of the classroom?”.

Playing with toast: Our first Ivanhoe game

We were pleased—and perhaps a bit surprised—that we completed our Praxis Charter so painlessly. It was both a test run to see how effectively we could work together as a new team and an opportunity to synthesize our many divergent ideas and goals for this experience. In terms of our work dynamic, we were quickly…. Continue reading “Playing with toast: Our first Ivanhoe game”.

Steps Taken

It’s a busy time around the Praxis Lab. At the moment our attention is divided between conceptual thought on the future of Ivanhoe, and practical education in the basic tools we’re going to need to carry out any of our concepts—plus, of course, the little external distractions of classes, comprehensive exams, job applications, etc. As…. Continue reading “Steps Taken”.

On Not Knowing What I’m Doing

A couple of weeks ago, Jeremy and the rest of the Scholars’ Lab staff helped us learn the basics of HTML, CSS, and Git. Then I promptly forgot them. Then, with wonderfully patient help from the staff, I remembered them, only to forget them again. After putting my limited HTML and CSS knowledge to good…. Continue reading “On Not Knowing What I’m Doing”.

Rules and Flexibility: Learning from Games for Ivanhoe

Do we want well-defined rules and roles? Do we want them to be fluid? Can rules and roles provide creative fluidity and playful flexibility? These questions have been a recurring theme in our conversations with the Praxis team as well as in our meetings with some of the Scholars Lab members. For me, questions about…. Continue reading “Rules and Flexibility: Learning from Games for Ivanhoe”.

A Fox… Among Others

The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing. Greetings! I am Swati Chawla, a second year PhD student at the department of history. The question, “Can the masters’ tools dismantle the masters’ house?” posed at a dhpoco talk last year resonated with my work on Tibetan exile in India, and was the reason I applied for the Praxis…. Continue reading “A Fox… Among Others”.

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