Friday, June 6, 2008

Smart Again

Do you miss deep thoughts?

Does your brain feel fried?

Do you long for more of this?

 If you answered yes to any of the questions above then this post's for you!  Since finishing college, quitting my job, and having babies, I have often longed to feel "smart again." There is a big part of me that misses those college days when I could immerse myself in a subject, take the time to study and think about it, and ultimately feel enriched and more knowledgeable.  This scenario just doesn't present itself too often once you are a mom--at least not in my world.  But...I have found a solution! (actually my mother in law found it).

The Teaching Company is a fantastic resource for "getting smart" while going about the business of being a mom, wife, maid, cook etc.  It is so worth a look.  This company is awesome.  They find the best professors in the country and record their lectures then sell them to you.  They have every course subject you can possibly imagine.  Nick's mom gave these to her kids for a few Christmas's so between us all we have a pretty good collection.  We take turns passing them around and have all gotten good use out of them.

I'm not about to lie and say I listen to a college course every week, but they are wonderful for road trips, or to put on your ipod while exercising, cleaning, painting or any other mundane house project. They are also great to listen to at night when you don't have the energy to read (of course they have been known to lull me to sleep on occasion).  We have found that our kids 8 and 10 even absorb quite a bit when we put them on while traveling.  I am amazed at what they have learned when we thought they weren't paying attention.

So far we have a very favorite professor; his name is Rufus Fears.  He is so totally entertaining, passionate and engaging it is truly a treat to listen to him.  We loved his lectures on "The History of Freedom,"  "Winston Churchill" and "Books That Have Made History, Books That Can Change Your Life."  I would recommend any of those highly.  We have listened to courses on Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Geology, The Gospels, U.S. History, and lots of others.  

When Nick and I take the time to listen to these, we love them.  We have great conversations, and feel so satisfied that we spent our time off the TV, actually learning something.  Now if I could just remember it for more than a day!

How do YOU stay smart?


jill said...

Nothing but PBS. Super Why really pushes me.

Rebecca said...

YAY! I love that you shared this! I'll definitely try this at some point. I've been using my daughter as an excuse for my remedial education. I'm studying art with her and it's a ball, plus it starts me at the level I really can understand - that of my 2 year olds! Other than that, I have download some of the "iTunes U" college courses and enjoyed them while walking.

partii said...

I thought from previous post I could just eat more walnuts to get more smarts.
I love the "Teaching Company" and 2nd jennfro on Winston Churchill by Rufus Fears.