The second article is from Camp Creek Blog. It Takes Time to Really Learn discusses how we hurt learning by moving too quickly from one idea to the next. I love this quote from Lori:
Adult life is like this, too. We’re bombarded with new ideas and inspirations and possibilities. Like excited children in a toy store, we see something that fascinates us, but before we really sit own to play with it, we see something new and the “old” thing (even if it’s just minutes old) is dropped by the wayside and forgotten.This reminds me of a book I read years ago, The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz. Having an abundance of anything, including ideas, can cause us to freeze up and not make any choice, for fear of choosing the wrong thing.
Lori's article really started me thinking. Our society seems to reward short attention spans. Employees who are better at multitasking have an easier time keeping their jobs since they can take on more responsibilities. A well-written television show has little chance of survival if it can't drum up viewership in its very first season. Programmers prefer lower-cost, mind-numbing reality shows that appeal to the audience the same way a traffic accident attracts rubberneckers. And schools that can show high marks on tests full of isolated facts learned by rote are rewarded with better funding. How often do you hear people laugh about how they could never pass the same tests they once excelled at? Every time I talk about testing I hear one of these "jokes."
I learned fairly early that if I wanted to do well at something, I needed to focus on it exclusively. I think my parents encouraged this attitude in me. They supplied me with reams of paper for drawing throughout my childhood. When I learned to juggle, I could spend the whole day doing nothing else. Circus arts was put to one side for yoga. And homeschooling. This is not to say that I abandoned past interests. One of the benefits of taking your time to learn a new skill is that it stays with you. You can always get back on that bike. You may be a little shaky at first, but the skill stays forever.
Which leads me to my latest project, learning how to publish my work. This has been on the back burner for a long time as homeschooling has been my priority, and then my writing and comics. Now that I have well over six hundred comic strips, the time has come to gather some into a collection. I've decided to do this as an experiment, using only the first two hundred comic strips as I learn the self-publishing process. I've been reading all about gutter margins and layouts and thinking about how to design the cover. Taking the time to learn and understand the final part of this process will probably cause me to slow down on making new strips, but I hope it will be worth it to the homeschooling community. I started putting everything together the beginning of this year, intending to have it ready in time for Christmas, but I'm having some problems with figuring out the formatting. My poor husband was helping me with my document for two hours last night, trying to get the footers to do what they are supposed to do. He plans to work on it again tonight. You wouldn't think that page numbers would be one of the most difficult parts of the process. That's something you learn along the way.