Okay, here's a couple random thoughts and then something a little more serious.


It's testing time in our state and school. Our fourth and fifth graders started on Monday and the third and sixth will be starting soon. I'm not going to spend too much time on standardized testing and NCLB, other than to say too much emphasis is being put on these tests. Sure, we can take some good out of the results, but as educators, we all know the way things are currently going, is certainly the wrong direction.


Does anyone still have Halloween costume parties at their schools? Our district got rid of them a while back. I guess we can't let the kids have fun anymore. My daughter's school still has a costume parade and the kids get to have a little party. I heard a teacher at my school today say she wishes we could get rid of Halloween and Valentine's day parties. I say let the kids relax and have some fun.


Why do classroom teachers collaborate little with others who can help their students. I'm the Library Media Specialist in my building and have all classes for an hour a week for library time and technology time. The tech part consists of going into the lab to work on something. If it was up to the little kids, it would be Kid Pix for 30 minutes. For the older kids, it would be listening to music videos while hitting Funbrian.com or even KidPix. I'd like to do some neat stuff with the kids, but with only 30 minutes a week to do it, my time is limited. How could it improve - collaboration! Could the classroom teachers work with me to integrate technology into what's going on? Of course. Do they? NO! I get some teachers who bring their kids to the lab and as the kids are walking in, the teacher will say, if you have some time, can you help them find some stuff on explorers when you go to the lab? Wow, nothing like giving me a heads up on it.

Here's the question of the moment - why do you think classroom teachers don't collaborate enough with the Library Media Specialist to better incorporate technology.

Side note: I do have more technology experience and ability than probably all of the classroom teachers.

Choice Schools - are they better than a traditional public school? Do they improve public schools because they create more competition? Proponents of Choice Schools have felt they are good for kids and families in Milwaukee and across the country. A recent report and ensuing article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel contradict those claims. The study was even funded by Choice supporters and they were surprised at the results.

Am I surprised at the results of the study? Not at all. In fact, when we discussed the article at lunch the other day, other educators weren't surprised. It seems to me that the teachers, parents, administrators, and students are the ones who make schools successful. By giving students a choice to switch from one below average school to another certainly doesn't guarantee improved learning. Good schools - traditional public, private, choice, etc. are going to be successful. Bad schools are not. What we as educators need to figure out is how to improve the poor achieving schools. It's not as simple as putting the best teachers there. We also need good families and administration.

As educators, we often try to look at things through rose colored glasses. The glass is half full, not half empty. We look at every child as a learner and try to see the positive in all children.

Sometimes, however, we don't. Some of us get in the lounge or at a happy hour function and start telling it like it is. In most cases, there's not an administrator around and the people we are talking to are one's we trust. I recently came across a blog entry that certainly speaks the truth - to some extent.

If you haven't read this entry from Scheiss Weekly, please do so. I bet you'll be nodding your head more than once! At my school, we really liked the reference to a acertain kind of behavior!

New Goals

Monday, October 22, 2007 | 2 comments »

With 2 months into yet another new school year already gone, I've decided to set a few goals for myself for the rest of this year. These are going to be school/professionally related, not personal. Some are going to be rather serious, others are not. Here we go.

1. Write something at least once a week. While some may have noticed that I took a rather lengthy vacation from blogging, I'm going to work hard on writing something each week that expresses my thoughts about something.

2. Read several blogs more than once a week. We all know there is great stuff being written by others regarding education (and crappy stuff as well) I'm going to try and read some- it might inspire, motivate, and frustrate me, but I'll take my chances.

3. Gain more patience with all of my students. Some knowingly try to under my skin while others do it without knowing, but either way, I've got to work on not getting to pissed off at the kids.

4. Take another class to complete my IMC certification. IF this happens, it will be during the second semester - we'll see.

5. Figure out the next few years. Our district is going through some reorganization, much of it will impact my future. There's some discussion that over the next few years, our elementary schools will go from K5-6th grade to full day K4-4th grade with our intermediate schools housing grades 5-8. I'm 99.9% sure I do not want to be working with K4-4th graders if this is the way of our district. Big decisions may have to be made.

6. Work out more. Yes, it's a personal goal, but if I'm feeling better, I'll have a better attitude at school, etc. I also won't be wasting a ton of money on a health club membership!

7. Don't sweat the small stuff - enjoy job security, friends at school, the opportunity to work with kids all day (a blessing and a curse), and all the other good things in life.

I'm back

Thursday, October 18, 2007 | 1 comments »

After a super (too long) break, I'm going to start writing again. It might be useless stuff that no one reads, it might not.

I'm also going to start reading again - which just might lead to a few people stopping by my site.

Hope to see some familiar bloggers back.

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