Expand Your Digi Knowledge at Brainstation
For those of you in Toronto (or Vancouver or New York for that matter), BrainStation is a haven for learning new skills in the digital sphere. From intensive courses on web development and digital marketing, to weekend sessions on UX and Lunch & Learns with local bawses, BrainStation has a lil’ something for everyone. I recently enrolled in the 10-week Intro to Web Development course so I would never have to pay someone to fix my site again. Hard? You bet your ass. Worth it? Hells yes. I can’t remember the last time I felt so confused. But that confusion was immediately followed by utter joy and satisfaction each time I figured out how to write a new piece of code. If you’re keen to know if BrainStation is right for you, head to one of their monthly Block Party nights to network and connect with other creatives in the community.
Learn a new Skill with Skillshare
Oh Skillshare – how I love you. One of my favourite sites on the entire interwebs, Skillshare is a video-course platform that allows experts to teach their skills to thirsty members. The site currently has over 900 classes, with experts teaching anything from How To Brew An Amazing Cup of Coffee to Getting Started with E-mail Marketing to The First Steps of Hand Lettering. They offer plenty of free courses, which are great to give you an idea of the quality and structure, but also to get you hooked – because I guarantee if you’re as knowledge hungry as me, you’ll be gettin’ dat Premium membership ASAP ($96 USD for the year, which I think is TOTALLY worth it because you get unlimited courses and can download them for offline viewing).
Debate and discuss with a Book club
Obviously one of the greatest things about book clubs is learning about what wine you love (because a book club without vino is just sad), but you can get sooooo much more out of these little social gatherings. Not only does joining a book club force you to take the time to relax and indulge in a new read, but it encourages discussions and debates on related topics, always offering up the opportunity to learn something new and gain a fresh perspective. I’m currently getting my read-on with a group of pals called The Lit Squad – check out the video from our first discussion of Shoe Dog!
Go back to school with Coursera
For those of you looking for legit, back-to-school higher learning, Coursera is an online hub for college-level education. With free (FREEEEE!) online courses from the likes of Yale, University of Pennsylvania, Stanford and more, you can learn anything from the History of the French Revolution to A Crash Course in Data Science. If you want to earn a certificate for taking the program, you may be required to pay a fee (usually quite nominal – around $60 CAD) – otherwise, it’s free to take the courses for pure enjoyment of learning (you masochist!).
Inspire Creativity with TEDTalks
Whether you’re interested in attending TED events in your area or simply binge-watching TEDTalks online (I can’t be the only one), these thought-provoking presentations are a great way for you to expand your knowledge on topics you’re already interested in or even introduce you to things you previously knew nothing about. TEDTalks are the perfect gateway to inspire creativity, provoke change and reignite your passion. To get you started, check out a few of my faves:
- 3 Ways to Speak English, Jamila Lyiscott
- My Year of Saying Yes, Shonda Rimes
- Do Schools Kills Creativity?, Ken Robinson
- Everything You Know About Addiction is Wrong, Johann Hari
How do you make sure that you’re always learning?
Share your favourite sites and habits in the comments below!