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The GOODEST: Our Favorite Things to Learn and Do This Past Week

You can learn about so many things on the internet, but how much more powerful would it be if you could also DO after you learned stuff? From...


You can learn about so many things on the internet, but how much more powerful would it be if you could also DO after you learned stuff? From building wind turbines to donating single mittens, we have things for you to learn and do from this past week.

Let's Learn First:


Want Kids to Fall in Love With Writing? Sometimes All You Need Is an Iguana

Max would begrudgingly write a few words, and, exasperated, he'd throw down his pencil. There were tears sometimes. Tantrums even.

Then one day, a new friend arrived. Alvarez.

A DO Suggestion? Help a teacher apply for a pet grant through PetsInTheClassroom.org.

The Internet of Plants: What These Smart Terrariums Can Tell us About Building Cities

Plant-in City is a collaborative project between architects, designers, and technologists building new ways of interacting with nature.

A DO Suggestion? Build your own terrarium.

Bicycle Taxidermy: So You Never Have to Say Goodbye

The U.K.-based artisan Regan Appleton, has come up with a "loving and lasting solution for your mechanical bereavement": Bicycle Taxidermy.

A DO Suggestion? Donate the parts of your bike that still work to Bicycle Kitchen.

Culinary Misfits: Saving Ugly Vegetables from Rejection

Most consumers (and, therefore, grocery stores) want flawless-looking produce, so farmers usually throw out crooked or otherwise unusual fruits and vegetables.

Culinary Misfits, a catering service in Berlin, travels to farms to buy veggies that would normally be rejected and creates gorgeous dishes from them.

A DO Suggestion? Find a twisted vegetable at your market and cook a dish with it. If you're in Los Angeles and you have a garden, become a part of the Home Growers Circle that provides fresh food to Forage Restaurant and don't forget the "black sheep" veggies.

Could Cameras Be the Best Weapon Against Climate Change?

Over the course of five years, I traveled around the Arctic with James Balog for the Extreme Ice Survey (EIS), and learned first-hand just how fast the ice is melting—faster than scientists predicted.

A DO Suggestion? See "Chasing Ice" in your city and if a screening isn't available, ask your local theater to make it happen. This Sunday at 5:30pm at the Sundance Cinemas in Los Angeles, the GOOD crew is seeing the documentary film. Join us and get your ticket here.

How Digital Hopscotch Can Help Kids Study (and Exercise)

Play hopscotch while you learn math.

A DO Suggestion? Read while on a treadmill. Dance while learning participals. Next time you're memorizing some flashcards, create a movement exercise while using them and tell us about it.

Poverty Doesn't Matter in Education? Tell That to an 11-Year-Old Living in the Tenderloin

When you watch the above clip of Sera, an 11-year-old girl living in a one-room rent-subsidized apartment in San Francisco's Tenderloin with her mother and sister, it's not hard to see why the educational reform conversation is changing.

Image from PBS.org

A DO Suggestion? 45 states in America have Common Core State Standards that set goals for students to meet in order to become college and career ready. Share your opinion about what state standards should be added to the initiative and upload a video here.

Bouncy Block: This Sidewalk Trampoline Path Re-imagines How You Walk Through Your City

What if there was a way to have a bounce in your step, all the time? The Russian firm Salto Architects has made that happen with "Fast Track."

A DO Suggestion? Build your own trampoline.

The Fixer's Manifesto: Why Fixing is the Unsung Hero of Creativity

What if it was normal to fix and improve things instead of buying new all the time?

A DO Suggestion? Find all the things in your home that you need to fix, Google DIYs, and fix them.

Tapping the Motion of the Ocean: Could the Tides Power Our World?

Two recent independent studies have shown that using current technologies, wind could power the whole world.

A DO Suggestion? Build your own wind turbine.

No More Lists of Rules: Ask Kids How They Want to Feel

Instead of starting with expectations for how students should behave, what if a school began the process of community-building by asking how students wanted to feel at school every day?

A DO Suggestion? If you're an educator, have your students create their own charter. Post the charters on our site.

Visualization: What We’d Wear If China Didn’t Exist

What would the modern world look like without China?

A DO Suggestion? Look through your closet and find all those clothes that were made in China. Make a list and tell us about it in our DO. Do you want to start buying locally?

Genius Not Required: Why Anyone Can Learn to Code

I've met a lot of people who believe that "programming" is an abstract, scary piece of dark magic—some kind of inaccessible ability. I'm a firm believer—and actual proof—that you don't have to be a child genius or mathematical wizard to learn how to code.

A DO Suggestion? Get involved with Coding for GOOD.

Now, let's DO:

Take free online classes, and help General Assembly build a school in Guatemala

For every person who registers for a free month of online GA classes, we'll pull $1 out of our stylin' cargo shorts, and put it towards helping Pencils of Promise build a primary school in Guatemala.

Run the Homeboy 5K and Support Gang Member Rehabilitation Efforts

Since 1988 Los Angeles' Homeboy Industries has helped gang involved or formerly incarcerated men and women turn their lives around by providing hope, job training, and skill building. Proceeds from the Homeboy 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, December 15, 2012 will help them keep their services going.

Commit to Girls and Women: Become a Half the Sky Movement Community Ambassador

We're looking for committed individuals in the U.S. who want to help create a more just world for women and girls. The Community Ambassador Program is about pooling our resources to take the movement one step further.

Support young men in Los Angeles in Midnight Basketball Programs!

The vision of this program is to help prevent violence and inspire peace and well-being in the youth of Los Angeles.

Buy Art + Help Artists Affected by Hurricane Sandy

Buy art via The Artist Relief Project. Participating artists have pledged to donate 50 percent of proceeds to New York Foundation for the Arts' Hurricane Sandy Emergency Relief Fund. Ends Dec 17.

Help Save the World’s Smallest Marine Dolphin

The world’s rarest and smallest marine dolphin is at risk of extinction. Urge New Zealand Prime Minister John Key to protect the last remaining Maui dolphins.

Do You Have A Single Mitten? Give It A Home At Glove Love!

Do The Green Thing is a climate change charity in the UK that set up a program called Glove Love to recycle lonely gloves so that they can be worn again in a stylish way. Set up a Glove Love program in your area today by emailing glovelove@dothegreenthing.com and donate any single mittens you may find to Glove Love here.

Tell us what you're doing. Click the DO button!

Above Illustration by Jessica De Jesus


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