véjà du, on seeing anew

by | Tuesday, September 09, 2008

I recently learned about véjà du (see here to learn more). I was sufficiently intrigued by this idea to use this as an assignment in the CEP818, Creativity in Teaching and Learning course I am currently teaching (with Mike DeSchryver). The assignment students were given is as follows:

So if déjà vu is the process by which something strange becomes, abruptly and surprisingly familiar, véjà du is the very opposite. It is the seeing of a familiar situation with “fresh eyes,” as if you have never seen it before. So if déjà vu is about making the strange look familiar, véjà du is all about making the familiar look strange! So, we would like you to practice your ability to experience véjà du. You will need your digital camera and an everyday item to photograph. This item could be anything from an armchair to a zeotrope, large or small, from something in your kitchen to something you would find in a children’s park. Your goal is to take pictures that do NOT allow the viewer to easily determine what the item is. Take as many pictures as you can. Try several different techniques, different angles, frames, and methods to disguise the item being photographed. Think about what your camera can do, (how much it can zoom in or zoom out, if you can insert it through openings to get interesting angles, etc.) to help you decide your item to be photographed. (For instance if your camera cannot take extremely closeups, choosing a small item may be the wrong way to go). Take a bunch of pictures at one go, and then let it aside for a day or so. A few days latter, come back repeat the assignment (with the same object) once again. Did that gap help you see things you had not noticed before? Finally, do remember to take one picture of the object that clearly shows what it really is.

Now this is a fun assignment and the class participants have done some really interesting work with this. Now, I have been intending to do this assignment as well … but just haven’t had the time to do so. Anyway, today I decided that enough is enough, and with Leigh Wolf helping me I took a bunch of pictures. The first five photographs are given below. Do you know what this object is? If not the answer is provided as a link at the bottom. Enjoy.

If you want to know the answer here is a clue… and finally the actual object. You can also see the entire flickr set here.

A few randomly selected blog posts…

The Brahmin connection

A funny (and yet somewhat sad) story ... So I am in Nagpur airport waiting for my flight, which had been delayed, and I struck up a conversation with a young man there, as one is wont to do. We of course started by complaining about the airlines, then moved on to...

GenAI in Education: MFLTC’s systems approach

GenAI in Education: MFLTC’s systems approach

Over two years ago we started a Learning Futures Collaborative focusing on the role of Artificial Intelligence in Education (The AI in Ed LFC). I like to emphasize the fact that we started the LFC BEFORE ChatGPT was released into the world. We were ahead of the curve....

Ron Clark Academy, scalable?

Scott McLeod over at Dangerously Irrelevant posted a video of a CNN story about the Ron Clark Academy and asked whether something like this was scalable? Watch the video as you ponder this question. Embedded video from CNN Video This is a question often asked of me,...

AACTE Major Forum Presentation

I include below a copy of the AACTE Major Forum presentation (announcement here) that I made at New Orleans on Saturday, February 9. There were other things that I participated in (as listed here) and I will post about them later. Matt was supposed to do this talk (as...

TPCK book covers

I finally received a copy of the Handbook of TPCK for educators (which I had blogged about previously here). It looks great! Matt and I have a key chapter (Introducing TPCK). I hadn't read this in a while, and after I got the book, I skimmed it... and it reads well....

New course: Creativity in teaching & learning

Announcing a new online course for the fall semester 2008:Creativity in teaching and learning Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently… You can praise them, disagree...

Technology Integration in Higher Education

Matt Koehler and I led a session on Technology Integration in Higher Education: Challenges & Opportunities for a day-long symposium titled: Colloquium on the Changing Professoriate. This is how our session was described in the program book/website: Technology has...

Ambigrams & Mathematics at HYSA

Ambigrams & Mathematics at HYSA

The Gary K. Herberger Young Scholars Academy (HYSA) is a school designed for highly gifted students in grades 7-12 affiliated with the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College and Arizona State University. Last Friday I had the pleasure and honor of working with all the...

Blast from the past: Theories and memory

Ambigram for the word "Theory" by Punya Mishra My first real research study was one that I conducted back when I was a graduate student under the mentorship of Bill Brewer. It was designed as a classic educational psychology memory study and though I have done little...

7 Comments

  1. Catherine

    Nice shot, giving me a hard time before i recognized it.

    Reply
  2. Vedezevanje

    Are you publishing your own articles? Or getting them from any other sources?

    Reply
  3. Brooke Peiffer

    I knew it was a monitor of some kind…but these pictures themselves are all very nice compositionally. I also thought it was a nice touch to have the sky reflected in the apple on the “clue” shot. 🙂

    Reply
  4. Bindu

    These are very cool. At first I thought it was an object from the kitchen but then realized it was too shiny.
    Now I get it! Great job!

    Reply
  5. Kiki DeLancey

    The beautiful imac.

    Reply
  6. Ken Dirkin

    Second Generation iMac.

    Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. véjà du, all over again | Punya Mishra's Web - [...] Comments Mary on ABC-Triplet AmbigramABC-Triplet Ambigram | Punya Mishra's Web on Multiple representations of the periodic table and learningGhaima…
  2. A TPACK video mashup! | nashworld - [...] of a whiteboard is determined very much by the context in which it is used. Similarly, one can use…

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *