Friday, August 18, 2006

Happiness as a Cause

It's hard to tell whether this is postmodernism gone terribly wrong or genuine happiness, but it got me thinking about happiness and a few other things. Mostly the bouncy rhythm and convivial swaying reminded me of an article published awhile back (March 10, 2006, in the Friday Boston Globe) about D. Ben-Shahar, a Harvard lecturer who teaches a Positive Psychology Course, and, if I had to guess, how much of Ben-Shahar's success as a teacher blooms from his willingness to share "deeply personal stories."Course materials appear here.

Ben-Shahar has been criticized about the level of difficulty the course presents. He argues that if the course seems easy, it is because it holds such great relevance to students' own lives, which they naturally are fascinated by. "Most things we find interesting, we also find easy," he said.

Interesting equals easy; own lives equals fascination. These are concepts for teachers and learners of all types to consider as the new school year is set to begin for most.


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