March 2017

The Rainfall Follows The Plow

Farmer PlowI don’t know if this is a particularly good poem, but it’s certainly an educational one – if not in the way its author intended. Democracy itself is founded on the idea that we get what we deserve. So is capitalism. Both assume engaged, informed individuals, each seeking their own enlightened, long-term self-interest, thus producing the best possible political and economic results, which in turn makes for a peaceful and mutually beneficial society.

If you make good choices, good things happen. Make bad choices, and…

Fact-Free History

Happy AdministratorThere’s nothing more terrifying than finding out your district administrators have just returned from a conference somewhere, and they’re excited about something. You know because they suddenly smile too much, and now they want to come talk to your department or hold a special faculty meeting.

Seven Reasons You Probably Don't Suck (For Teachers)

Many of us are returning without much idea what we’ll be doing in class this week. Maybe you feel behind again, and have big plans for getting things ‘back on track.’ Or maybe all that stuff you were gonna do better this year has already kinda fizzled, and you’re just hanging on until term ends. Some of you are excited about seeing your kids again – which is weird. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for you… but it’s still seriously weird. 

So maybe you’re optimistic, or maybe you’re sad break is over, or maybe… Maybe you don’t actually know anymore. 

Play That Funky Music (7 Steps Of Professional Growth)

Wild Cherry CoverMy ELA comrades are fond of discussing ‘universal themes’ and ‘common plots’ in literature and in life. I can’t speak to every book ever written, but I will confess I have a much better idea of who’s going to die and who’s going to betray the hero in any decent sci-fi or superhero movie now that I’ve sat in on a few literature classes.

Nuptial Benedictions (The Divorce Industry in Oklahoma Territory)

Walking Away

Between the first “land run” opening up the “Unassigned Lands” of Indian Territory in 1889 and statehood in 1907, Oklahoma filled up rapidly. 

There were a variety of reasons, of course. The “frontier” was rapidly closing and Oklahoma Territory was the last hope of true homesteading on the continent. Early reports suggested fertile soil and cooperative climate – descriptions which would later be recalled in wry reflection by those who'd embraced them. Then there was the sheer newness and unpredictability of it all – in a nation built on restlessness and possibilities, that alone was sometimes enough.

Oh – and of course, it was a great place to get a divorce.

Why Are Some Curriculars "Extra"?

Three R'sIt’s difficult to question things we don’t realize we assume. For example, few of us ponder why we easily trust our family doctor to diagnose pretty much ANY part of our body, internal or external, except our mouth. Our mouth, it seems, is so darned complicated and unique compared to, say, our aortic valve or epidermal sheath, that only SPECIAL DIFFERENT OTHER TYPES OF DOCTORS can even LOOK at this oral outlier.

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