Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I'm a Doodler, So Sue Me

I am a Doodler.  I doodle at meetings, in classes, when I'm on the phone, when I'm watching training videos, at the Dr's office waiting room, on airplanes etc.  Lucky for me, the head honchos that I deal with for training classes in my own agency and at the FFIEC A> are both well-educated about HOW to train people, GET it, and even ENCOURAGE it (my agency's training lady even puts out pipe cleaners, playdoh, and/or various other things to play with while you are listening in class), and B> know me well enough to know that I am (ALMOST always) fully paying attention. 

The other people in classes though.....UGH.  You people drive me nuts with your little remarks about the doodling.  To me, when you are sitting in a class staring blankly at the front of the room rarely even blinking, it doesn't look like you are listening, it looks like you might be a serial killer. 

Research shows that you have to have TWO areas of your learning centers engaged in order to retain information.  That means that if I'm listening to you read me a 200 slide powerpoint presentation and I'm not doing anything else.....I'm not hearing you. (People that READ their powerpoint slides to me are a topic of a whole 'nother rant.  As is the use of the phrase "a whole 'nother"). 

Last week I was in a week-long class which included 11 students and 8 trainers.  I was expected all kinds of crap for the doodling, but only got a passing comment from 2 of the trainers, and as usual, three of four of the class participants.  It usually doesn't bother me in the least, but last week was a little stressful and so it bugged me more than normal. 

Just so ya' know, while I'm doodling, I'll retain about 30% more of the information than the guy sitting next to me staring in to space.  And that is science. 

From a TIME: SCIENCE article:

" Doodling, in contrast, requires very few executive resources but just enough cognitive effort to keep you from daydreaming, which — if unchecked — will jump-start activity in cortical networks that will keep you from remembering what's going on. Doodling forces your brain to expend just enough energy to stop it from daydreaming but not so much that you don't pay attention."

And here's a Ted talk about the subject:  http://www.ted.com/talks/sunni_brown.html

There's lots of research to back this up.  So hey you doodling naysayers.....BACK OFF.

Just for the record, here are the things I doodled last week in class:

I'm going to start carrying the research with me to all my classes.  I swear. 


Draggon said...

Looks like art to me sister!

DCshutrbug said...

Sniff sniff! I'm all verklempt! And the artwork is fabulous by the way.