* Being Real

First reblogged on David Snape and Friends, this terrific post is written by a white woman acknowledging how differences, especially racial differences, made her feel uncomfortable. She examines her soul and her faith after watching a film on Jesse Owens. Her response is encouraging: face my weaknesses head-on. She’s a strong and compelling writer.

Making Room For God

I am a Caucasian woman who grew up in a middle class society within a two parent household along with 4 other siblings.  My school and community had basically 0% diversity. Okay, maybe 1%.

Why is this important?

The other day I went with a friend to see the movie, “Race.”  If you haven’t seen it, go.  “Race” is the story of Jesse Owens, the world famous Olympian sprinter who made history at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.  (Note the date).  Jesse Owens was an African-American male who grew up in a poor area of Cleveland, Ohio within a two parent household along with 9 siblings, and worked his rear off to make it to The Ohio State University.  He is an inspiration.

“The battles that count aren’t the ones for gold medals. The struggles within yourself – the invisible, inevitable battles inside all of us – that’s where it’s…

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* Ratings rule!

When working with kids, one of the first things I establish is the importance of their honest feedback.  I’m especially interested in creating a language to discuss the difficulty level of a lesson or specific task.  A numbered rating scale, once defined and practiced, is a useful means of eliciting immediate feedback.  While it’s also important to gauge understanding, I can usually assess that without as much direct student feedback.  On the other hand, the levels of effort, discomfort or anxiety, and interest can be masked by compliance and a good working relationship.

Feedback on mental effort is especially crucial for twice exceptional students (2e).  These are the kids whose giftedness camouflages the energy drain of a lesson.  2e kiddos also enjoy a scale with a broad range of possibilities, so 1 through 10 is often preferable to 1 through 5.  It’s worth letting them take the time to adjust the numbers precisely (I got an 8.5 level of difficulty yesterday, which is pretty high).  The harder part can be helping them verbalize what features of the task made it so onerous.  Just as these students can struggle to differentiate main ideas and details, they may also paint the assignment with a broad brush.  Follow-up questioning elicits those details which then change my instructional materials or techniques.   Providing kids routine opportunities to evaluate instructional tasks not only validates their efforts but improves their ability to analyze and self-monitor their learning.  For me, it’s equally vital for improving my own skills as a teacher.  Win-win!

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* Color your world magenta maniac

magenta 3

The room was silent as kids waited for me to burn my fingers or set fire to the house.  Or both.  Birthday parties bring out the child arsonist in me.  A long time ago, I created all kinds of colorful fires with my chemistry kit (while my family slept).  I enjoyed tossing every chemical I had into my little bunsen burner.  What colorful flames!  No wonder I love this blogging challenge.

Oh, magenta.  Right.  The balloon.

Color Your World: 120 Days of Color; Magenta

Cady Luck has done her research. Who knew that Milton Bradley was interested in art education? And take a look at this blogger’s gorgeous magenta color (and more!).

The Travel Lady In Her Shoes

Ready For Spring!Ready For Spring!

Ready for Spring, Painted in the Waterlogue AppReady for Spring, Painted in the Waterlogue App

Look at this bounty of color! To celebrate Milton Bradley’s collaboration with Crayola I also added the photo painted in the IPhone Waterlogue App!

Magenta, the rosy pink color, was added to the Crayola line, in 1903, as one of their first colors.

In 1907 Binney & Smith partnered with Milton Bradley to produce the Crayola # 77 assortment with the Milton Bradley label printed on the box. Who is Milton Bradley you ask? Milton Bradley was interested in art education, which led him to produce a new color wheel and publish four books about teaching color. He also introduced the first standardized watercolor sets. He founded a company in 1860 for the production of American board games, which eventually included the games; The Game of Life, Candy Land, Operation, and Battleship.  Who hasn’t played…

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* Don’t worry, ball yankers are just a part of bowling

Just when you thought you’d heard it all, Ned explains the intricacies and uh, values of bowling. Make sure you read this before signing up your kiddos.

Ned's Blog

imageAfter seven years weeks of attending our oldest son’s high school bowling tournaments, I’m passing along a few tips to parents who may find themselves in a similar situation. And by ‘”situation” I mean contemplating suffocating themselves with an empty bowling bag after listening to 24 lanes of crashing pins for five hours. Especially if, for personal reasons, you aren’t comfortable spending those hours drinking in front your child’s high school teammates.

First, invest in a tall folding chair. The taller the better. In fact, consider purchasing a portable lifeguard stand if possible. That’s because getting a prime seat to watch your child bowl depends on how willing you are to take the life of a complete stranger. Getting a good location is similar to the Oklahoma Land Rush. Once the doors open, parents stampede (some on actual horseback) to the most valuable territory: the mid-point between 1) the center of…

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* The Testing Camera

Here’s a fresh look at the impact of our “decade of testing” (thanks, http://www.fablevisionlearning.com/blog/2014/12/the-testing-camera). The video is short and bittersweet. Click and enjoy.

Mostly True Stories of K. Renae P.

The Testing Camera


I am not the test score

Let’s make sure we are assessing to improve instruction as well as helping students learn and grow instead of putting kids in front of a testing camera.

Check This Out!

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* Starving

Reblogged on WordPress.com

Here is a link to a powerful post written by a mom as she watches her son struggle with anorexia.  It is worth reading.  Mental illness has such a stigma, such shame associated with it.  This mom’s writing helps to demystify her son’s condition and provides hope that they will make it through this very hard journey.  I appreciate her willingness to share their struggle.

Source: Starving

* Live long and prosper

Need a laugh at the end of a long day? Here’s one!

(Here’s a more visible copy of Bluebird’s post.)

A young man asked his great-grandfather how he’d managed to live so long. The old man said that the key to his longevity was the fact that he sprinkled a little gunpowder on his oatmeal every morning. The young man decided to do the same, and for the rest of his life he sprinkled a little gunpowder on his oatmeal every morning.

He lived to be ninety-eight years old. When he died, he left eight children, twenty-one grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren, and a fifteen-foot hole in the wall of the crematorium.

 

 

bluebird of bitterness

A young man asked his great-grandfather how he’d managed to live so long. The old man said that the key to his longevity was the fact that he sprinkled a little gunpowder on his oatmeal every morning. The young man decided to do the same, and for the rest of his life he sprinkled a little gunpowder on his oatmeal every morning.

He lived to be ninety-eight years old. When he died, he left eight children, twenty-one grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren, and a fifteen-foot hole in the wall of the crematorium.

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* Cee’s Share Your World Challenge

I’m inching my way back to sanity after a hectic week.  It’s such a treat to find time for reading through others’ blogs.  I’d be inching the other way if I read every blog that interests me.  An old (2013) stat says there are 152+ million blogs out there!  Golly!  My blog’s stats suggest that 152+ million folks don’t even know I’m here.  I do have nearly that many spam comments, so does that count?  Back to the business at hand.  Here are my responses to Cee’s weekly questions.  You should try her challenges!  All 152+ million of you.

What chore do I absolutely hate doing?  Hmm, I love any kind of cleaning but discarding teacher stuff is hard for me.  I have stacks of papers and materials which are gathering cobwebs, waiting for me to cull and organize.

What was the last URL I bookmarked?  That would be Zaption so I can access and edit my teaching videos quickly.

Close my eyes. Listen to my body. What part of my body is seeking attention? What is it telling me?  I’m currently taking antibiotics so my digestive system is whining.  I am giving it probiotics but a time out is in order if it doesn’t stop fussing.

Would I rather have a two-bedroom apartment in a big city of my choosing or a mansion in the countryside in the state or country where I currently live?  I guess a mansion, so I’d have more room for my unculled stacks of teacher junk.

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