July 2008 Blog Posts (18)

Traveling at the Speed of Sound

I was looking for bird songs when I came across a site, the Quiet American. Most people make photo logs of their travels, this man makes sound logs. I stumbled into his field recordings of Vietnam. Birds, yes, but also Buddhist temple chants, street sounds of Saigon, and my favorite,

water buffalo happily splashing in a pond.… Continue

Added by Ellen Pham on July 31, 2008 at 1:31am — 1 Comment

Working in the Field with Kids

Summer brings the opportunity to take hoe, rake, chainsaw, and five weed-eaters into the park for some quality time with kids and multi-floral rose. (The latter being a nasty briar-filled pest in these parts). The kids are always amazing, always more excited about the work than I, and so very, very helpful to our efforts to move things forward.

If you line them up, their covers are the opposite of their stories. The one with the carefree name and appearance got the rawest deal from… Continue

Added by Ed Jones on July 30, 2008 at 9:30am — No Comments

Hilarious: How NOT to design a Stop Sign

I thought this was so funny... especially the part about how they want to add a web address so people can go online to get more information! Ha! (Yes, I am laughing at… Continue

Added by Laura Gibbs on July 29, 2008 at 10:57am — No Comments

The Greatest Scandal

There's not much new in this column, save that the forces of the old status quo seem to be gaining ground again, and reverting much of the progress made of late. All may not come to pass; oft things are said before elections that are revoked once the reality of governing sets in, and the desire to leave a legacy of accomplishment out-shines the draw of catering to the establishment cronies… Continue

Added by Ed Jones on July 28, 2008 at 10:43pm — 2 Comments

Who wants to peek in a neighborhood community in Israel?

I am inviting you to read my latest blog post "Kindergarten and the molding of a community" on http://or-tal.com/?p=58.

Added by Or-Tal Kiriati on July 20, 2008 at 3:00pm — 3 Comments

becoming yet more technified...

Ok, this is the week of techno. Just bought a new Mac, and along with it got a free iPod touch. (Educators get this bennie along with the discount until September 7th, I believe.) Oh yeah, a new scanner/printer... Big deal changes.

Beyond that (and quite necessary) new glasses. Bifocals! Graduated bifocals.

I can't get used to anything. Just taking baby steps before the big immersion. Today, fire-wiring the two computers together, getting all the old stuff onto the new… Continue

Added by Connie Weber on July 17, 2008 at 7:52am — 4 Comments

The end of summer break...

It's been a while. Honestly, after school let out I just needed a break from anything and everything to do with education. I've had a great month of vacationing, visiting and being visited, et cetera, and now I'm hopefully refreshed enough for the next round.

When I was still a student, mid-July would still be early summer break. I would still feel like I had all the time in the world until I had to think about school again. Instead, my summer break is about to come to an end. On… Continue

Added by Penelope Millar on July 16, 2008 at 10:01pm — 2 Comments

Strategic involvement of university resources in fighting poverty

This map shows areas of high poverty in Chicago along with locations of poorly performing schools. It also shows locations of universities. I encourage you to read the blogs here and here where we reflect on the purpose and uses of these… Continue

Added by Daniel Bassill on July 16, 2008 at 5:59pm — 4 Comments

I know you have a Teaching "style" but do you have "STYLE"?

We talk a lot as teachers about learning style but not so much about teaching style.

Most teachers agree, we all have our own unique "style" . Some of us are quiet and calm. Some of us are loud and energetic. Some of us have desks all neatly organized, clear and many of us have desks that appear chaotic, tired, as old rag and bone shops of the heart. Some of us…


Added by ddeubel on July 14, 2008 at 7:14pm — No Comments

The Power of Communication in Learning

We humans have an incredible capacity to learn. More than the acquisition of skills, information, and knowledge, that capacity helps us mature and evolve — engaging our curious, creative minds, stretching our awareness, and deepening our understanding of the world and ourselves.

One of the most potent vehicles for learning is communication, facilitated for us humans through language. Words are the tools of our species, a product of our undeniable interconnection. Language has the… Continue

Added by Anna Billings on July 13, 2008 at 12:53pm — 12 Comments

Mirroring People by Marco Iacoboni

Mirroring People by Marco Iacoboni is going to be great, I can tell. I'll share the first pages in the book. (Good for practicing typing, good for sharing ideas...)

"Chapter One: Monkey See, Monkey Do

Neuro This!

When we get right down to it, what do we human beings do all day long? We read the world, especially the people we encounter. My face in the mirror first thing in the morning doesn't look too good, but the face beside me in the mirror tells me that my… Continue

Added by Connie Weber on July 13, 2008 at 9:32am — 3 Comments

Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention by Csikszentmihalyi

Ever read a book that moves you along in exactly the way you were craving, presenting the ideas you have been thinking about, but moving you across an edge you didn't know was there, into a whole new framing of thoughts? That's what's happening to me as I read Csikszentmihalyi's book. (Does anyone know how to say his name?)

I'm thrilled with the book... getting that marvelous feeling of epiphany... getting "brain flips," something akin to "stomach flips" that you get when you're in a… Continue

Added by Connie Weber on July 13, 2008 at 8:48am — 1 Comment

What Subject Are You Best Suited To Teach?

I am interested in your opinion regarding the following (my apologies in advance for a slightly longwinded explanation): having decided to become a teacher, but without ties to a specific subject, how does one determine what subject they are best suited to teach? A subject for which you have natural affinity and talent? Or does a personal struggle in mastering a subject inherently make you better suited to teach it to others who are likely going through the same thing? In other words: if… Continue

Added by Jocelyn Bonadio on July 11, 2008 at 9:04pm — 5 Comments

HBO: Hard Times at Douglas High

Has anyone seen the new HBO documentary? I'll just quote Coby Loup's (Fordham) summary here, and point to a few reviews.
Though it offers a few uplifting scenes, Hard Times at Douglass High is mostly a picture of failure and despair in one Baltimore school. The year before it was filmed, only 10 percent of Douglass students passed the Maryland state English exam and only one percent passed in algebra. By the end of their freshman year, 50 percent of the school's ninth graders will…

Added by Ed Jones on July 5, 2008 at 12:30pm — 1 Comment

Ravitch & Meier: A Broader, Bolder Approach to Education

Two of our mentors here at Fireside, Diane Ravitch and Debora Meier, recently signed a statement, and sign on to a group, calling for A Broader, Bolder Approach to Education
Characteristics of the Broader, Bolder Approach Consistent with these two principles, we propose a broader, bolder approach with the following four priorities:

Continue to pursue school improvement…

Added by Ed Jones on July 5, 2008 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

"USA TODAY: Sharpton, education plan may tear union ties"

Well, this is different. As told by USA TODAY, Sharpton, education plan may tear union ties
Decades-long ties between civil rights groups and teachers unions could be split by a new effort, led by the Rev. Al Sharpton and New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, to close the nagging achievement gap between white and minority students. Sharpton, a Baptist pastor and political gadfly, says that…

Added by Ed Jones on July 3, 2008 at 8:47am — No Comments

Summer: Father Guido Sarducci reveals the truth about college...

HILARIOUS. And........ frighteningly true! Especially the foreign language part, ha ha! :-)

Added by Laura Gibbs on July 1, 2008 at 10:20am — 5 Comments

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