Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Reflection on
A Whole New Mind
by David Pink
I loved reading this book. It felt comfortable, low stress, and understandable, I connected with it in many ways. I don't know what theother literature books had to say, but the meeting between this book and my brain was meant to be! Personally and professionally, it felt like an important part of me that had been considered low status in the work market was given value. The six components were all familiar, although not in such depth nor so specifically, because they are all part of personal, private life.
The portfolio sections of the book were a unique experience, so many wonderful resources and ideas! My junior high son would pick up my book just to check these sections for ideas he wants to try, we read manyof them together and were amazed at the possibilities.
A special connection was the story of the Hero's Journey. The author likened it to reading this book and I agreed; it was an eye opener, especially with all the extraordinary examples. Even more, though, it was my story as I worked my way through the Power 21 on-line class! I'd felt pretty comfortable with what I was doing, and knowing, taking traditional professional classes that gave me new ideas and methods, and most often reinforced my teaching philosophy and style. Meantime, though, elementary students and my junior high son, were amazing and bewildering me with their computer class assignments and the knowledge they seemed so comfortable using. It was moe than the generation gap that had me understanding so little of their language! Hence, I decided this class was the one for me. I struggled like a foreigner in an unkind land, ran the gauntlet of emotions from high to lows, and with help of "those in the know" was able to come out alive. I learned many new things to take back to my teacher's role, perhaps not all I was expected to learn, nor all I need to know, but enough to feel successful and ready to learn more. I wonder if it weren't for the story, told throughout humanity's storytelling history, with the Hero's successful return held out like a promise that all would be well, if I would have stayed the struggle. I like to think I would've, but like I've said, this story was meant to come to me!
The fact that David Pink doesn't write that left or right brain is better, or preferred, over teh other is a major factor in the believability, and acceptance, of his views. We've heard that argument enough to know which "side" we're on. Instead he writes, with examples showing proof, that although the two hemispheres of the brain are very different, both are necessary in the Conceptual Age. I think this is the most attractive aspect of the book, a choice of one isn't required, rather, a belief that we can "have it all".
The viewpoints in this book reminded me also of my grandparents and their generation. Those folk lived the six components: they told stories, they laughed and found humor in the easy and difficult situations, they had genuine meaning in their lives, their neighborliness was empathy at its best, they were continually designing and redesigning their careers and theirlives to make things better, not to mention the countless inventions they created or improved upon "to get the job done" without worry of patents, and they wer able to take their knowledge and skills and use them in another fashion or place; all in the name of survival and the joy of living. I loved my grandparents and spent a great deal of time with them, perhaps that's a big reason I felt so close to this book immediately and enjoyed it so thoroughly from beginning to end.
I find myself recommending this book to almost everyone I meet and then running through a brief summary to entice them to believe they need to read this. I wish I could send it to so manyof our leaders, the chosen and the self-apppointed, so we could all get on the same page and work for the best for our country and our people. I'm so glad I read David Pink's book A Whole New Mind.

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