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January 2008


One of the kids whose parents I met with today is about to turn 16. In 8th grade. He’s two years older than everyone else. I mentioned it to one of the APs. His take? Didn’t want to do anything about it because the parents would question why it hadn’t been caught earlier. Apparently my […]

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Thank God for 3 day weekends. I was in a right mess on Friday. I was frustrated, and felt like a failure. I’m still frustrated, and I still feel like there’s something I missed. But, I also managed to get some perspective. In particular, I remembered an almost throw away line from Rafe Esquith in […]

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School Decay

This flickr photo essay on a Detroit school book repository is bound to provoke metaphorical comparisons of all sorts, especially the above photo of a tree growing out of a pile of rotting books. I just find it telling of our system that is collapsing under its own weight, that is so big that it […]


So I had an entry in Dan’s Design Contest. Compared to the others, it looks like it was drawn by a preschooler with crayons. And the people who eventually won all had great designs, that actually illuminated what they were trying to say. The thing is, when I look at this non-entry by the inspirer […]



I love Indexed. It’s almost all math. You either get graphs with direct and inverse variation or Venn diagrams that show off observations about life and the world. I think these are perfect for 30 second commercial breaks in the middle of class. It gets rid of the numbers and formulas, and just works on […]

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Almost falling off

[I apologize if this seems rough. I’m running on little sleep. This is a second radically revised draft, and i’m still not sure it’s gelled. However, I need to get this down before I polish the raw emotions out of it.] TMAO talks about a ledge. It comes from the unfulfilled desire to work in […]


“Better” followup

Here are some slides from the next day’s lesson – out of context, but that I think tie in well with the previous days lesson.

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So, after the crappy lesson on Friday, I was due for a better one. I’ve taught rates (and the introduction of dimensions & units) for the past 4 years, and it’s always been a slow start. I eventually get the kids going, but there is a good 6-7 minutes of muddling as I try to […]

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The lesson in that last post? The one I tried to find a silver lining in? Where I figured that just because I layed out the “why” and had the kids argue it through for themselves, that it might be okay? It really wasn’t. My first instinct was right. Not only wasn’t there a lot […]


Silver Lining

So I did a craptastic lesson yesterday. Minimal preparation – just a short slide deck as an intro, and then an assignment sheet out of the consumable book from the scripted program I’m supposed to be teaching. I certainly didn’t feel a lot of inspiration, and it certainly didn’t feel worthy of the accolades of […]

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