This Thursday evening I will be presenting my first purely general public talk on my research. Up until now they have all been academic in some way- at a school or a conference mostly. I’m a bit nervous as public speaking is something I generally find pretty nerve wracking. But, as keeps proving true, I know my material and I know people are interested in the Vikings even here in California so I’ll let that carry me through. At the very least this is the first opportunity to shamelessly self-promote Viking Nations. Who knows- maybe some local schools will be looking for assistance with including more medieval content into their programs and curriculum. If you happen to be one of these educators Reader please message me. One of the many idea that resulted from the International Medieval Congress at Kalamazoo is an increased focus from the Medieval Academy of America to take on Common Core. The academic response has been strong and is still rallying to the cause- K’zoo was only this past May after all. So watch this space.
I tutor grades K-12 periodically aside from my adult tutoring work. Kids are excited about an opportunity to do more medieval when given a choice of Egypt or Rome. Kids are even more excited when “medieval” encompasses all cultures fromCE500-1500. I work with the low-income kids- the ones who rarely get outside homework help, who often translate languages for their parents, the ones who notice the differences between the haves and the have-nots and assume it reflects their own intelligence. Those that I have worked with want to know why. Medieval Studies provides that for much of the modern world. Research into humanity’s past helps us all to better understand its future. And it’s fun.
This summer has been a scramble of fruit foraging, Etsy shop creation [DKnightPaints if you are interested], writing and illustration- so essentially deadlines. When fruit is ready it has to be dealt with otherwise I lose out on a free and substantial resource. So much of my summer months I have berry-stained hands and bramble-scratched arms but a lot of jam making supplies. The rest of the time its ink and paint on my hands. And my jeans. Oh well- I never could keep my work or my fun off my person. I’ll need to remember not to pick this Thursday though so I don’t frighten the audience.