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Performance write-up.

MSA322's picture

In our performance, we asked the class to close their eyes and try to count to 10. If two people spoke at the same time they had to start over again, without opening their eyes. A demonstration was done my the our group first. The purpose of our group activity was to see how the minds could be connected without the usual vision sense we have. We were trying to see how we would react differently when our usual ways of communication though our vision sense is taken away, and if we were able to communicate without it. Moreover, we were interested in what sort of emergent system would result from having only simple individual rules, and what patterns would emerge from these simple rules and the interactions between the individuals. We also were referring to Chorost's idea of our brains being connected on the web, this basic activity would represent the connectedness of our minds with each other, and how willing we are to share thoughts. One last thing we thought we want to examine is the willingness of us to let others speak for us, speak our thoughts, and how un/comfortable that would be and how trusting are we?

The activity came out well, it was impressive how the class could reach to 10 in a short time, after only few tries. Then we tried it with the alphabet and lost at the letter V, which is interesting, because how anxious were the students to finish that two just wanted to maybe take over and finish it.



rubikscube's picture

emerging patterns

I like MissArcher2's idea of having done this exercise at the beginning of the semester. It would have been interesting to see how our ability to speak for one another could have changed over time. One thing I mentioned during this performance in class was the emergent patterns that went along with this exercise. Although there was no central leader in our group, we each had our own set of rules to follow, and this helped us to successfully complete the exercise. Some people chose not to speak at all during the exercise, and although there was no leader to tell them to do so, we still were able to count to 10 with these people sitting out. I also mentioned that it was interesting how people chose to say only one number at a time, even though this was not explicitly stated in the rules. A pattern that could have emerged is one person counting to 10 on her own, but the class seemed to think that they needed to take turns. Another pattern could have been that after whoever started with number 1, the counting would continue one by one in either the left or right direction. Although these specific patterns did not occur in our class, I still think it's interesting that we managed to find a way to complete this drill, even though we did not have anyone leading us.

MissArcher2's picture

group thinking!

Thanks for posting this, MSA! I was pleasantly surprised by how well our performance went in class. I noticed that many students thought they had the answers as to how to think as a group successfully, but it practice it was a lot more difficult. The suggestion to use the alphabet instead of numbers was a great one and it was so fun to see how the class nearly succeeded at that. 

I wish that we'd done this exercise at the beginning of the semester so we could come back to it at the end and see how our ability to read each other and think collectively had evolved, but as it was, I definitely saw the class trying to work and think as a group. Maybe practicing this kind of focus and trying to read each other would have helped with the "to raise or not to raise hands" dilemma we struggled with in our class discussions! 

This activity was a great culmination of the work we've done this semester. Thanks to the class for making it such a success! 

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