5 Ways to Learn Something New and Improve Your Life In 2014

BY: - 30 Dec '13 | inspiration

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Now that we have stuffed ourselves like the furry toy animals gifted to children during Christmas and have shopped until our credit scores dropped like the winter temperatures, maybe now I can get your attention when I say “Tis the Season”. For the record, you might want to note that when I say “Tis the Season” I do so without including words like “ho ho ho”, “he went to Jared” or “make this is a December to remember”. Tis the season is absolutely not a reference for us to continue raising our BMI like jolly old St. Nick nor to persist in buying stuff that causes our credit scores to plummet further.

Once and for all, “tis the season” means maybe now we can focus and commit to doing a better job taking care of ourselves and being better for those who count on us to be our best. It is my prayer this Holiday season that we all could be healthy, wealthy and wise.

However, the first step to health, wealth and wisdom is admission. We have to admit who we are and where we stand. Once we confess who we are and where we are, we can take the next step which is enlightenment.

The following are a few things that will not only enlighten but prove to be invaluable gifts for all those you care about and who count on you to be your best.

Tis the Season to Become A Lifetime Learner

A good way to begin the journey towards health, wealth and wisdom is to be informed – to always be learning. Your gender, age or socio-economic status is irrelevant – Our entire community benefits when we ALL continue to learn.

For those who will dismiss this article because you have something better to do like go shopping – give me your undivided attention if only for a couple seconds. You would be doing yourself and Our community a great favor if you focused on becoming an informed consumer the very same way you passionately and eagerly fight traffic to get to the mall so that you may pick up the latest fashion items and brand name goods. If helping your community was not reason enough to become a lifetime learner, let’s not forget that the purchase of your next $350 Ferragamo belt and $2,500 Celine handbag could depend on your ability to understand the significance of income, appreciating asset accumulation and wealth transfer.

Trust me when I tell you that there really is no excuse to ever stop learning. In fact, when we stop taking an interest in learning we ALL fall down and behind in every positive societal measurement. If you doubt me, check out the Pew Report – it will scare you more than having to tell your spouse how much you really plan to spend this Holiday season.

Tis the Season to Embrace STEM

STEM is the way of the future. If you don’t know what STEM is you better get acquainted soon before it’s too late. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. STEM represents the academic and vocational areas where business creation, product innovation and jobs of the future will exist. If you ever wonder why so many foreigners still rave about the greatness of America while we continue to lament America’s shortcomings, one reason is that while we are learning about the “sales” to be had during the Holiday season – many of those immigrating to America are studying and preparing to take advantage of the educational and economic opportunities in this country made available by STEM.

America ranks 25th in mathematics and 17th in science among industrialized nations. The PISA ranking tells the chilling truth about American schools. American schools on a whole are failing and schools in predominantly Black communities are unfortunately the rule rather than the exception. The fact that American corporations are looking at labor sources that live in neighborhoods other than ours should not come as a surprise.

America as a nation is unprepared. And Black America as a nation within a nation – well according to PISA – we simply are even less prepared to participate in a global and technologically advanced economy. If we really want to be healthy, wealthy, and wise, it’s time that we discontinue an education that makes us sick, poor and foolish. Tis the season to be enlightened by STEM.

Tis the Season to Give Freely

The greatest part of the Holiday season is that we are supposed to give freely – gifting with no expectation of a gift in return. Thus, in the true spirit of the Holiday season, I want to gift a few things to you. Don’t worry, I won’t be offended if you don’t give me anything in return nor will I be disappointed if you re-gift my presents and give them to someone else. I actually would be hurt and saddened if you did anything else.

  1. Get acquainted with PISA – Make sure your child is being educated on a system identical to the one used by the countries with the best PISA ranking. In the civil disobedient spirit of N.W.A., make sure your school system knows that you understand PISA – “If it ain’t PISA, it ain’t me!”  http://youtu.be/q1I9tuScLUA
  2. Introduce your child to the CK-12 Foundation – CK-12’s goal is to provide high-quality education materials to all, so that everyone has an opportunity to learn. This offer includes Our children.
  3. Enroll at Udacity – “Udacity is the future of online higher education. We offer accessible, affordable, engaging classes that anyone can take, anytime.” Affordable as in “free interactive college classes” which means cheaper than a $350 Ferragamo belt and more valuable than a $2,500 Celine Handbag.
  4. Surf Lumosity – Spend a few minutes of the numerous hours you spend surfing online, wandering through the mall and interacting with family, friends and strangers on social websites and surf on over to Lumosity. Lumosity can help improve your brain performance, enhance memory and attention to detail so that you can live a better life – Happily Ever After.

Happy Holidays to you and yours. And please remember to re-gift my gift to everyone you know. After all Tis the Season!

About the author

Nathaniel Turner

http://www.raisingsupaman.com/

Nathaniel A. Turner, J.D. blogs at The Raising Supaman Project, a dad blog for children of all ages. Nate shares thought-provoking, educational and entertaining ways to raise children who will maximize their God-given ability and encourages children of all ages to become great adults. The Raising Supaman Project exists to change the world, 1 parent, 1 child at a time!

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2 WordPress comments on “5 Ways to Learn Something New and Improve Your Life In 2014

  1. Renee

    Great article. Can I also suggest code.org? I introduced my students to that and for the ones who were hooked, I challenged them to look for additional ways to further this introduction to coding. Another free site for university courses is coursera.org which I believe has been around for a while.

    Also, since I’ve never shopped at Barneys, I was financially conscious part to stay away from Macy’s in consideration of the arrest of the actor who bought a watch. I actually felt liberated doing that, and noticed that Macy’s has sent me a plethora of coupons which have since been discarded.

    Reply
  2. Nathaniel Turner Post author

    Thank you Renee for reading the post and for your kind words. I try to provide information that will be beneficial. It is always great to know when someone feels I have accomplished my goal. If the response is positive perhaps I will be able to write additional articles about other technology and education. In the meantime, take a minute to check out our blog http://www.raisingsupaman.com

    Reply

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