Archive | April 2013

#IfIhadmyway, 5/26–>That Higher Standard

ImageIf I had my way, anyone who chooses to teach children would understand completely that educators are held to a higher standard than just about anyone else on the planet in regard to our lives outside of the classroom.

Whether we like it or not, in many ways, our behavior outside the classroom is as closely scrutinized as our behavior inside the classroom. It has been my observation, whatever a teacher chooses to do in his or her free time, even though it is away from school and has nothing to do with school, will be judged harshly by his or her public based on the established mores of the community.

With that said, regardless of where one lives, educators have a higher standard to consider and must be prepared to deal with the consequences of any decision made which violates that standard.

It is just the way it is. Neglecting that higher standard can and will make one’s life a lot more difficult.

Yes, teachers have the same constitutional rights as anyone else in the United States.

But, in my opinion, this higher standard has little to do with constitutional rights and more to do with common sense.

A doctor can write a racy novel and more than likely continue practicing medicine without a hitch.

A lawyer can be charged with a DWI or DUI and probably proceed in his or her career without missing a beat.

An accountant can speak his or her mind about political issues without any fallout.

Can you?

Connecting the dots…from iPhones to Duck Calls

#IfIhadmyway, everybody would understand why my phone ringtone is quacking ducks!!

that MADDENing teacher

NFL Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw played 2nd string quarterback to Phil Robertson in college.

The following is my speech for the Staley High School 2013 National Honor Society Induction Ceremony.

Ladies and gentleman of the Staley High School National Honor Society, you are here this evening because you have proven yourself to be a person of excellent character and high academic standards.

Tonight I challenge you to continue along this path of excellence but with one caveat.

ALWAYS NURTURE YOUR CREATIVE SPIRIT BY FINDING WAYS TO CONNECT THE DOTS!

If asked who is considered to be one of the most creative minds of our time, there is one name in particular on which we can agree.

The late Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple Industries and inventor once said:

Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a…

View original post 408 more words

Survey Says—>

Image

Please feel free to comment about the data that can be found by clicking on the Twitter logo. Thank you to all who replied to the survey. Now, what next?

If I had a Twitter (The Twitter Song)

Image

Last evening  during #edchat, husband and wife members of my PLN, Bill and Diane Chamberlain, shared a tweet or two about how much time a certain husband spends on twitter. Bill even commented “if I had a dollar for every tweet…”

Well, this got me to thinking along the lines of Peter, Paul and Mary’s song If I Had a Hammer.

The result was the following: Enjoy and thank you to Bill and Di for their inspiration. Oh, and, yes, Bill, I expect you to learn this song on your Ukulele so we can sing it when we meet one day! And, Di, get your tambourine ready!

(Please feel free to make suggestions via comments for improvement.)

IF I HAD A TWITTER (The TWITTER Song)

words by Barbara W. Madden with inspiration from Bill and Diane Chamberlain

If I had a Twitter

I’d tweet in the morning

I’d tweet in the evening

All over the Web

I’d tweet out blog posts

I’d tweet out web links

I’d tweet out where to find professional development

All over the Web

If I were a Teacher

I’d tweet it in the morning

I’d tweet it in the evening

All over the Web

I’d tweet out blog posts

I’d tweet out web links

I’d tweet out where to find professional development

All over the Web

If I had a PLN

I’d tweet it in the morning

I’d tweet it in the evening

All over the Web

I’d tweet out blog posts

I’d tweet out web links

I’d tweet out where to find professional development

All over the Web

Well I’ve got a Twitter

And I am a Teacher

And I’ve got a thought to tweet

All over the Web

It’s a tweet of knowledge

It’s a tweet of wisdom

It’s a tweet about where to find professional development

All over the Web

 

My 100th post. So why not bash algebra?

Granted, and...

Hard for me to believe, but this is my 100th blog post. That’s the equivalent of a 300 page book – with much less pain, and lots more fun interaction: thanks to all my loyal readers and responders! And hooray for the Internet for permitting easy and rich discourse about one’s ideas.

To celebrate I thought I would return to my favorite educational whipping boy* Algebra I. There are so many reasons for dumping on Algebra but a timely one (on this blog milestone) comes from the fact that one of my blog posts on math was quoted in the recently-released Publisher’s Guidelines on the Math Common Core Standards!

Before I get into my rant, let’s be very clear about a few things:

I love math. I taught math – Pre-calculus and Geometry – and I am good at it, my best grades in school. I think non-Euclidean geometry is…

View original post 2,755 more words

Connecting the dots…from iPhones to Duck Calls

NFL Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw played 2nd string quarterback to Phil Robertson in college.

The following is my speech for the Staley High School 2013 National Honor Society Induction Ceremony.

Ladies and gentleman of the Staley High School National Honor Society, you are here this evening because you have proven yourself to be a person of excellent character and high academic standards.

Tonight I challenge you to continue along this path of excellence but with one caveat.

ALWAYS NURTURE YOUR CREATIVE SPIRIT BY FINDING WAYS TO CONNECT THE DOTS!

If asked who is considered to be one of the most creative minds of our time, there is one name in particular on which we can agree.

The late Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple Industries and inventor once said:

Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.

In other words, they figured how to connect the dots.

Another creative mind I find of personal interest belongs to a gentleman who does not care to own an iPhone or any cellphone for that matter. He prefers a computer technology-free, if not rustic, existence.

Phil Robertson grew up one of seven children whose mother was often ill and whose father worked hard to keep food on the table. Phil and his three brothers honed their expert hunting skills while keeping the family fed.

Though Phil’s hunting would eventually gain him the worldwide reputation as the Duck Commander, it was his athletic prowess that would take him through high school as a member of the all-state teams for baseball, track and football. He attended Louisiana Tech University on a football scholarship, playing until his senior season, when he quit because he was tired of football interfering with hunting.

In his autobiography, teammate Terry Bradshaw, who played second string behind Phil, recalls how Phil would arrive to football practice with squirrel tails and duck feathers sticking out of his pockets.

Eventually, Terry Bradshaw would win four Super Bowl titles as well as a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

On the other hand, Phil Robertson turned down offers to play pro football.

After teaching for several years and, unfortunately, hitting more than a few personal bumps in the road, Robertson was finally able to, as Steve Jobs said, connect experiences he’d had and synthesize new thing or, connect the dots, by inventing the first in a series of duck calls, which are now sold in all fifty states as well as several countries around the world, making Phil Robertson a very wealthy man as well as a star on the most popular cable TV program, Duck Dynasty.

Yes, Steve Jobs, changed the world of technology by connecting the dots.

And, yes, in his own way, Phil Robertson changed the world of hunting by connecting the dots.

And, now, once more, let me encourage you to

ALWAYS NURTURE YOUR CREATIVE SPIRIT BY FINDING WAYS TO

CONNECT THE DOTS!

Terry Bradshaw (far right) with Phil and wife Kay and, son, Willie.

Terry Bradshaw (far right) with Phil and wife Kay and, son, Willie.

Because you never know where those dots will lead you…

Despite the fact that Steve Jobs and Phil Robertson have very little in common, they are connected…

After all, this iPhone can call ducks—(I held up my iPhone and activated the duck ringtone.)

Thank you!

“…shock…still in our bones”

boston-77500_640 Photo courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com[/caption%5D

The following is the email I received this morning from my Mama:

Image

The email  sums up perfectly how I feel–yes, the shock is still in my bones reverberating all the way back to September 11, 2001.

I didn’t know the best way to express how I felt about what happened in Boston until I read the email. For some reason I now feel a little less confused though no less angry. Thank you, Mama.

The New York Times has an update about Boston.