Challenges

Each of the links below goes to a GoogleDoc with specific assignment instructions, and for overall details, see the Extra Credit: H.E.A.R.T. page at the class wiki. And remember: you don't have to wait until the end of the week to do some extra credit; you can do one of these whenever you have some time to spare. So, find something that appeals to you, and click the link to find out just how the challenge works:

Attention: Read an article about attention. I've collected articles about attention, distraction, mindfulness and focus at Diigo for you to browse and explore.

Attention/Time: Try the Pomodoro technique. The Pomodoro (Italian for "tomato") is a tomato-shaped timer, and this technique is a way to help you space out your work/breaks. You can do it with any kind of timer.

Empathy: I wish my teacher knew... Read about a teacher who created an anonymous sharing with her students and what she learned. You can do that too if you want (I set up an anonymous form kind of like what this teacher did).

Empathy: Read an article about empathy. I've bookmarked a wide range of articles about empathy; you can choose one you like and see what you learn. (You can do this challenge multiple times with different articles.)

Empathy: Watch for Empathy. For this challenge, you will watch to see someone practicing empathy and find out what you can learn from their practice.

Empathy. Empathy in a story. Can you find a good empathy story in the readings you have done for class? This challenge can help you to think about empathy in stories and also about how storytellers create (or not) empathy between readers and characters.

Happiness. Read an article about happiness. Choose from articles about gratitude, laughter, and other dimensions of well-being, and then see what you can take away from the article to grow your own happiness.

Happiness: Try the Happiness Jar. The "happiness jar" (which you can do analog or digital) is a way to practice both reflection and gratitude, and then see what effect it has on your sense of well-being.

Health. Learn about sleep. Some aspects of our sleep cycle remain a mystery, but scientists are learning more about sleep and the brain, along with the many ways in which sleep affects our health and well-being. Use this challenge to learn more about the importance of sleep.

Health. Deskercise! There are lots of stretching and other kinds of exercise movements you can do at your desk, in the library, etc. Browse through some lists of desk exercises, and see if you can find some you want to try.

Health: OU Student Videos on Mental Health. This is a remarkable series of video interviews with OU students that was published by the OU Daily (with accompanying newspaper articles). One of the students, J.D. Baker, is the current SGA President; another, Cooper Lund, was a student in this class year before last.

Reading. Read an article about reading. You will find lots of different topics to choose from in this collection of articles. Find an article that intrigues you, read it, and then write up your thoughts. (You can do this challenge multiple times with different articles.)

Reading. Try reading out loud. This is a challenge you can do at the same time as you do the weekly reading for class: try reading some or all of the stories out loud and then think about how the experience of reading out loud is different from silent reading.

Time. Read an article about time and time management. Remember that first week assignment where you read two articles with time management tips? You can use this challenge to explore more articles on that topic to see what clicks for you. (You can do this challenge multiple times with different articles.)

Time. Review your class schedule. It's totally up to you when/how you schedule assignments for this class; use this challenge to review your schedule and ponder any changes you might want to make.



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