Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The 131st Carnival of Education

This is my last week of freedom before I have to return to two weeks of inservice training. Yes I said TWO WEEKS. I plan on drowning my sorrows with some good Absolute Vodka and reading some of the excellent entries for this week's carnival.

My Daily Reads

Fans of the Fox TV show 24 will LOVE Mr Teacher's idea for a 24 hour school day. Putting his engineering talents to good use he has figured out many ways school districts could save money by using his idea, not to mention astronomy can be added in for those difficult midnight to 4A.M. hours.

Joanne Jacobs has rightfully been described as the Queen Mother of all education bloggers, and her website has been one of my daily reads for over 3 years now. Joanne discusses research related to learning styles in her entry for this week's carnival.

Raising graduation rates is like herding cats, or so says Ms. Cornelius over at A Shrewdness of Apes. In this week's submission she examines the unintended consequences of NCLB and what may happen as the push for improved high school graduation rates intensifies. Do we want more graduates, or are we willing to accept fewer graduates of a more rigorous and well-rounded curriculum?

Ever encounter a situation where you were totally at a lost as to what to do?It's Not All Test Scores, submitted by NYC Educator, discusses a situation that occurred when he was a first year teacher. By the way, I once had a comb similar to the one you described. Of course, I also used to have hair. After reading his blog for a couple of years now I bet he doesn't have too many of those situations anymore.

Is This How To Build A Better NCLB? ask The Education Wonks. I followed much of what Rep. Miller has said about NCLB lately, and I'm stumped as to what his position actually is. Maybe someone from his home state can enlighten me.

Bloggers Who Obviously Don't Read My Blog, Or They Wouldn't Use Such Big Words, Especially During The Summer

The Red Pencil examines education blogs and discusses a system for rating them. So does this submission from Dangerously Irrelevant. I would have looked myself up but all the colors on Dangerously Irrelevant's chart were giving me a headache. Or could it be I'm just pouting because I wasn't listed in their Top 30?

I knew I was in trouble when I read this title, Po Moyemu--In My Opinion: Albemarle's Home Instruction Policy Manual Update and the Term Educational Progress Discussed. Silvia is a stay-at-home (or really more out-and-about) mom who homeschools her children, volunteers for a statewide homeschool organization, and has some other interests to talk about besides.

According to Hube over at The Colossus of Rhodey, the NEA is also confused about SCOTUS decision regarding race & schooling. Hube didn't use a lot of big words himself, but he seems to understand what they mean.

Bloggers I've Taken An Instant Disliking To, Because They're Probably Funnier Than I Am

TheSexy Secularist! doesn't include a photo of the author, so I took the liberty of supplying one (Hint: I have a Joely Fisher crush). Besides being sexy he's also A Very Sore Loser.

A blog that's new to me, It's Not All Flowers and Sausages, discusses The Great Cockroach Chase that occurred in her classroom. I've never seen a cockroach chase but I have been to cockroach races. I think most people were there just to see a cockroach crash.

Around The Blogs

How many times have you heard the phrase "If it wasn't written down somewhere it didn't happen"? Scott Elias discusses why its important to not only write things down but to do it while you're thinking about it.

What if you could write a 10 step plan for your district? Carnival virgin no more Carey has created a Top Ten List of goals for her district in the upcoming school year.

Speaking of Top Ten lists, how about a Ten Things to Know About the Kids from Scenes From The Battleground? I was both a #1 and a #3 on the bad side list, as when I was in 4th grade I would often steal people's crayons, break them apart and throw them at people when the teacher wasn't looking. If you're out there reading this, Mrs. Pickett, I am truly sorry (and BTW, it was Duane who threw the garbage can down the stairs not me. Admittedly, I did suggest it).

Math Helps You Do Well In Science? As my sister would say, who'da thunk it? Kim's Play Place wonders why someone actually spent money studying this.

Apparently the admissions office at the Chicago Graduate School of Business is suffering from Powerpoint Poisioning, so if you're thinking of applying you might want to practice by taking The Four Slide Sales Pitch challenge from Dan over at dy/dan.

Are you planning with your end in mind or your mind in your end. Yes, I know it brings a naughty image to mind but blame Andy over at HorseSense and Nonsense. He's the one who said it!

If you're searching for a better way to teach the history of Berlin than why not try discussing the Ampelmännchen? He has his own website and you can buy his gadgets all over Berlin.

Dr. Jan's Blog is one of those blogs I need to start reading daily. In her submission for this week's carnival Dr. Jan discusses TeacherTube and Wikis and how they can be used to make history meaningful.

ATR is a term most teacher's outside of New York won't recognize, Norm over at Education Notes Online pokes fun at the Bloomberg/Klein administration and offers a little big of humor for those poor unfortunates who have been labeled ATR.

California Teacher Dude (I can't resist doing that) Guy offers up some tips for developing readers with stamina. As with so many activities, the key to getting better is practice, practice, practice.

I've written before about being stuck in several kinds of interview hell, but Mrs. Bluebird is stuck in vocabulary hell. She's also on an unbelievably short deadline to the first day of school, according to her ticker.

Speaking of going back to school early, Clix of Epic Adventures Are Often Uncomfortable has already had that dreaded first day of school, with several 4 time repeat offenders to make things interesting. Warning: Angst to Follow. Bummer Dude!

Has your school cut back on many of the things it used to supply for you? Matt refers to this as the School Supply Tax and wonders why parents should have to pay for such basic items as hand sanitizer.

Do black, navy or khaki pants or skirts and a solid-color shirt with a collar oppress the freedom of expression of students, when they are a required school uniform? The Colossus of Rhodey has found some parents who feel it is.

Lack of support from administration is often cited as a reason for teachers to leave the profession, IB A Math Teacher discusses a NY Times Story regarding the changing student grades by administrators.

I fear for Mamcita's safety. She has written that it upsets her to see her students so anxious over their final exams, after all its just a piece of paper. If she's not careful one of those "reform" groups is going to put a dead horse head in her bed for messing with their profits.

Steven of REALITY ON A STICK has some thought provoking comments on education and the sense of community. Luckily for me he didn't use to many big words so I was able to follow his essay.

Once again Alvaro is nagging encouraging us to Exercise Your Brain! . NOW GET THOSE LAZY PARIETAL LOBES OFF THE COUCH AND LEARN SOMETHING! He also points out how spending 5 hours a day on the couch watching TV is not good for your mind or your body.

Christina has The Low-Down on Federal Student Loans. Her website was having some problems as I'm writing this so here is the description she wrote for her submission.
Federal loans are a great option when your other financial aid doesn't cover the total cost to attend school. If you're like most students you often find yourself at least a couple thousand short. So instead of picking up another part-time job consider taking out a federal loan.

Hopefully her site will be up and running again shortly.

Bloggers with the word "Right" in the their title

Rightwing Prof has a little ditty about Jack and Diane a story about a "presenter" at an academic conference he attended. According to the professor, "The story is true, the names have been changed to protect the stupid".

Darren of Right on the Left Coast: Views From a Conservative Teacher wonders if NEA Members Are Homophobes. As a Texas teacher, where we can neither strike nor collective bargain and the powers of unions are greatly diminished, I sometimes have difficulties in understanding the ins and outs of powerful unions. Darren does a much better job of explaining it than I can.

Check Out My Homey

In many families, bedtime becomes a special place where parents and children enjoy reading a book together. Not surprisingly the effects of such interactions are felt throughout the child's life. Life Without School writes about reading with her children in My Autodidacts and Me: Book Learning.

Thanks to all who submitted. Next week's carnival will be hosted by Lennie of Education Matters. Entries should be submitted no later than 10 P.M. EST to Lennie(at)EducationMatters(dot)US or you can use this handy form.


Mister Teacher said...

Absolut Vodka, Joely Fischer, and Jack Bauer??!!?? What an AWESOME Carnival!!!
Good job, my friend!

Mamacita (The REAL one) said...

You've done a great job with the Carnival! Thank you for including me.

"Ms. Cornelius" said...

Excellent job, as usual, and I LOVE the subtitles!

By the way, I didn't make the top 30 either, and I don't know a bunch of those people. They are obviously not as cool as us.

Mister Teacher said...

Just FYI, I looked at the ranking data, and you come in at 162.
Ms. Cornelius is at 48 (WOW!),
Mamacita is at 59 (WOW!!), and I fall at 170. You are exactly 2 authority points higher than me. So I bow to your superior blog roll...

Anonymous said...

Dude, what am I doing wrong? Last time the Carnival was here, my submission wasn't included, either.

Anonymous said...


I'm as puzzled as you are. Last week my submission had a broken link which I reported. I never received a reply, so I left a comment on the site. The comment was held for approval, eventually approved, and the link wasn't changed. This week I was snubbed as well.

Thankfully, I have almost all of these sites in my RSS reader and have come across most of the posts anyway. I'm glad to see a couple new faces, though - the Carnival's rolling well.

Mrs. Bluebird said...

Delightful! Wonderful job, dude!

Mike in Texas said...

Jonathan and Matthew,

There were some problems with the blog carnival sending posts to the proper email.

I used every submission I received. Rightwingprof had the same problem a couple of weeks ago.

Send me your links and I will add them in or do a "lost children" of the carnival addition. The email is mikea3_98@yahoo.com

tm said...

Great work!

Mimi said...

Thanks for mentioning my blog, although I'll try not to take offense that you mentioned hating it upon reading it. I'm choosing to take it as a bit of a compliment???


Mike in Texas said...


I didn't mean to imply I hated it, it just had too many big words to read when I was trying not to overuse my limited brainpower.

It was meant to be funny.

Anonymous said...

What an amazing, cynical carnival, I had a great laugh! Thanks for including me, and thanks for the great work!

CaliforniaTeacherGuy said...

Maybe I should just change the name of my blog to CaliforniaTeacherDude. Then you wouldn't have to use the strikeout feature!

Mimi said...

Thanks Mike...I'm new to the blogging thing and can be overly sensitive...kind of ironic that I would be sensitive if you've read my posts...I think you did a great job this week!!!


Mike in Texas said...

California Teacher Guy,

And ruin the fun for me??

"Ms. Cornelius" said...

Sniff!-- 48? Hmmmm.

Seriously, youa re so brave to take on the shepherding of all our little psyches. I will add the lost chirren edition to my shout-out.

Janet said...

I love the carefully chosen sub titles. Great job!:)

Darren said...

I've been on a trip this week and had no internet connection, so I'm a little late--thanks for including me, and I've just added a link to this post over at my blog.