online learning


campus
Leiden University Campus The Hague

I believe in education and everything mind engaging. To be concrete, I truly think that learning has to be a lifetime activity and it should not be restricted by the curriculum of educational institution. Undoubtedly, I am still pro-formal education, I am a university student myself and starting my second semester of the studies next Monday. Even so, I am still highly profound of informal, specifically, online learning (e.g. today I am starting a few courses on Coursera) . That might have been the inspiration to write this post and share some of my insights and favourite sources of knowledge.

If you are able to read my blog, it means that you have no excuses not to be learning something new and useful. Sometimes it may seem that reading  about yet another scandal in the pop business is something new, but it definitely does not have a reasonable impact on your life and mind. I am talking about intelligent topics and I do not believe in the idea that educational means boring as most of the pupils think. I does not matter if you are interested in art history, chemistry, literature, nutrition, fitness – basically, anything that our lives are made of – you can find information about it on the internet.  Just stay away from the lives of other people, read books not gossip magazines and watch documentaries not reality shows.

As for me, I find knowledge not only in the books and documentaries, but also use the power of world wide web. Now, I would like to share some of my favourite websites and YouTube channels which I use to find inspiration and get more knowledge about the subjects of my interest.

Websites

online-education-study-skill_thumbnail1CourseraProbably one of the best academical projects I have ever seen. It allows you to enroll in a huge variety of courses from many great universities and everything is for free! What is the best about it, is that you are learning together with other students, participating in real discussions, doing quizzes and after you are done with the course you get a certificate!

Khan AcademyI am only starting to get a grasp of this website, but so far it looks great. You can watch videos from an abundance of subjects – from art history to science. Then you can also take part in discussions, accomplish various goals and even create programs if you are into the computer science.

YouTube channels

bigstock_Online_Education_11092172 TEDEducation. I cannot even describe in words how much I adore this channel, you just have to experience it yourself! It has already taught me a lot, from the benefits of being an introvert all the way to creating history. This channel has more topics than you can think of and some of the lectures/lessons are professionally animated which makes the learning process even more entertaining.

CGPGrey. Another great youtuber, who sometimes may talk too fast for me to keep up with all the information, but after a few videos you are just left truly amazed and addicted. His videos about the definition of The Netherlands and the future of education are definitely among my favourite ones.

Crash Course. My list would be incomplete without this awesome channel! Four subjects (history, English literature, biology and ecology) and two brothers – that is all you need for your evening of learning. It does not matter if you are preparing  for a test or just feeling an urge to get more knowledgeable and be amused. This is a perfect place for all of it.

I know that somewhere out there are a lot more great and valuable sources of intelligence. Thus, feel free to share your favourites and/or tell your experience or opinion about the informal/online learning.

rainy days and illness


It is one of those typical Dutch days which tend to occur even in the middle of winter. Just raining, nothing but drizzling, pouring, spouting and gushing… Despite all the gloominess I love this kind of weather, because “the gray sky can’t dampen my spirit” as it says in the song. I would love to, at least, hum along or even start going:

“I’m singin’ in the rain,

just singin’ in the rain,

what a glorious feelin’,

I’m happy again!”

But then your sore throat painfully reminds you that it is not such a good idea after all… And here you are, left with nothing, only the chance and lots of time to cozily sit at home, drink tea without milk, listen to jazz or indie music and watch old films to brighten up your day.

As much as I love rain and foggy days I loathe illness and not being able to go to the grocery shop and buy that carton of regular milk. Fortunately, I always have my tea and chocolate.

What do you do when it is raining all day? Or when you are too ill to go outside?

hikikomori


"Shaking Tokyo"
Hikikomori from Bong Joon-ho film “Shaking Tokyo” (2008)

Hikikomori (ひきこもり or 引き籠もり, literally “pulling inward, being confined”, i.e., “acute social withdrawal”) is a Japanese term to refer to the phenomenon of reclusive adolescents or young adults who withdraw from social life, often seeking extreme degrees of isolation and confinement.

********

In the shadows I breathe silently,
I am scared to even spread the curtains,
Cannibals are looming outside…

I am a well-read home resident,
I know so many writers and treasure their creations.
I’m common with the solitude of the Opera Ghost,
I cannot find the meaning of my life like Faust,
And always read Tolstoy in his native language.

Every day I listen to music while resting,
And I am not too lazy to screw the turntable.
I cry after hearing the “Moonlight Sonata”,
I already know “Humoresque” by my heart,
And if I had any friends,
We would dance to the Moldovan waltz.

But I shall not leave my home
I am a loner, lurking in the darkness.
I have renounced publicity and communication –
I am hikikomori…

June 2011

05:49 AM CET: The Beginning


Den Haag

Good morning stranger!

I do not know why I am here or how did get here and, you know what, I do not want to find out. I have been on the journey through my life for the past eighteen years and eleven months, but this early morning I feel different… This time I have an undying urge to record it and share it with the outer world and its wonderful citizens.

Blogging has been around for at least fifteen years or even more and a lot of people seem to have been successfully (or not) doing it and actually enjoying themselves, thus, undoubtedly, I want to join them. Additionally, we (me included) are all suffering from the same problem of having an opinion and sometimes we are even tricked into thinking that other people wish and/or have to hear it no matter what. That is exactly my case. I have to many thoughts and ideas, too many words and unexpressed feelings in my mind, thus I must share them with someone. However, as I am too shy I cannot make videos, despite the fact that I do have some ideas for various “moving and talking pictures”, that is where blogging plays a perfect role as an alternative choice – I do not have to speak, I may type. Besides, writing has always been one of my many passions and I have been writing for a while now; not only in my native and beloved Lithuanian language, but also in English and if I am lucky and inspired enough in Russian. Right, so now I do understand why I am here…

You, on the other hand, are a different case. Why should anyone read my thoughts and travel together through my activities and experiences? I am not a unique person, I suppose, but we probably do have something in common. If you stay, you might find something that is familiar. I am quite confident in saying those words as I indulge and obsess about many things. Sometimes it is even beyond my own limits to recall everything I have done, said or liked in my lifetime. That is why I am going to show you the treasures of the world around me, I am going to analyse and talk about various topics: from science fiction to De Stijl, from Charlie Chaplin’s films to Korean Pop, from Lithuanian folklore music to Andy Warhol… I hope you are intrigued just as I am! Besides, it is only the beginning and I am learning about this craft from the scratch, you know?

If you are still here, congratulations and thank you for granting me some attention (we all desire it, don’t we?)! I promise not to deceive you and keep you updated and engaged!

Iki Pasimatymo! See You later!

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