Tuesday, July 17, 2007
As I mentioned in yesterday evening's post on Scott Powell's history curriculum for home-schoolers, I am looking forward to taking the next installment of his A First History for Adults, probably starting tomorrow evening.
"What does he mean by, 'Probably?'" you might be asking yourself, since the the live lectures start on the evening of July 18th.
I'll tell you what I mean. As a scientist, I have a weekly schedule that is all but impossible to set down in stone. Experiments can, and usually do, take longer than I expect, whether because I'm having "one of those days" when apparently everything that can go wrong does -- or because I've hit a mother lode of data and thus in no mood to stop. Sometimes, a shared facility I need to use opens up unexpectedly, requiring me to be flexible in order to get things done.
Still, at other times, I simply find that I have to spend a lot more time reading or thinking about a particular topic than I had anticipated beforehand. This all is just the tip of the iceberg for the planning nightmare I have to contend with. Soon, I may have to perform experiments during the wee hours on top of all that.
Fortunately for me -- and this is what allows me to give A First History for Adults a go at all -- I don't have to worry about exactly when a given weekly lecture occurs because if I cannot listen to a lecture live, I will be able to download it from the Internet to hear it at my convenience. As a new customer of Mr. Powell's I appreciate his innovative use of technology already, and look forward to studying history the way I should have learned it in the first place.
As one who regards the free market as the solution to such problems as poor education, I am very pleased to see that technology and original thinking are making superior educational alternatives realistically available for my future children. Not only that, but I have the opportunity to avail myself of an improved education within otherwise lost or wasted time from my own schedule. Now.
Whether you're just back from a conference like myself or have simply been sitting on the fence, I recommend joining Scott Powell's class tomorrow. It strikes me as something of a history-making way to learn more about and thereby enjoy history. Not only that, the $349.00 price tag is for a course of twenty 90-minute lectures, or just over eleven dollars per hour. Financially, this is in movie ticket range, but without the risk of money and time wasted on something like A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.