Blue Serials (9/11/16)

Sometimes we need a little help to cut through the clutter and decipher the nonsense.


They Might Be Giants - Thinking Machine (official video)

But fret not, my #11FF - I'm here for you. 


I know, I know... me too. But we must press forward. We're sometimes all they have. Besides, I know what will help you feel better, re-energize, sharpen that ol' focus...

Here are a few things you simply MUST NOT MISS from the world of edu-bloggery this past week!

OKEducationTruthsOn Ditch Diggers & Dreamers - Rick Cobb, OKEducationTruths. Cobb posts about Labor Day, but being him, the post is about so much more than that - and... videos!

Working and dreaming are not mutually exclusive endeavors. Our nation was not built by those who are content with the world they saw around them. Innovation has never been left to the conformists. We work so we can play. And so we can dream. But first, we work.

This one, I confess, left me a tad misty-eyed. No joke. Follow @okeducation on Twitter or YOU'RE DOING EVERYTHING WRONG. #oklaed 

Peter GreeneCan Evidence Improve America's Schools? - Peter Greene, Curmudgucation. Greene is all about using research to improve his teaching. He just doesn't buy most of what's being sold as "research." 

When some guy shows up to say, "I've never done your job, and I've never watched you do your job, and I don't know your kids, or your school or your community or you, but I would like to tell you how you should totally change what you do based on one flawed piece of research with ten bits of data, and by the way, I'm hoping to make a ton of money by selling this to you--" Well, that's just not a pitch I'm buying.

I'm an education researcher every day of my professional life.


Caffeinated RagePublic Schools Aren’t Businesses. Don’t Believe Me? Try Running a Business as a Public School. - Stu Egan, Caffeinated Rage. Egan is new to me, but I love the blog title already - not to mention his mildly quirky sense of frothing indignation. 

 I invite you to try and see if you could run a business like a public school. Maybe the differences between a public service and private enterprise might become more apparent because you’re not even comparing apples to oranges. You’re comparing apples to rocks.

So he seems nice. 

Follow @ragecaffeinated on Twitter and froth along. I think I'm a fan. 

Mrs Megan MorganDear Educator Mom - Mrs. Megan Morgan, on the appropriately named MrsMeganMorgan.

Moms. To Do. Teachers. To Do. Guilt. To Don't. 

Just like state standards, there is too much to accomplish.  Pick your hills to die on (We don’t have to have the same ones)... Once these things are accomplished, then everything else is gravy.

Own your hills and don’t try to match others. I’ve accepted that my house is even close to magazine worthy and I have no guilt about it.

Follow @MrsMeganMorgan on Twitter or HAPPINESS WILL NEVER BE YOURS.

Pernille RippHow to Create Empowered Readers – A Beginning / So Much Depends On The Word "Yet"... - Pernille Ripp, A double shot of Ripp, with three extra squirts of passion. 

I don't do much in the way of 'caring nurturing inspiring' posts, but Ripp brings a validity to that flavor of passion like only a handful of others can. 

How many of our students have not experienced what is means to complete a series that one has become so invested in that it feels like the loss of a family member once the last page has been read?  How many years has it been for some, if at all, since they truly loved a book?  While we cannot change the past, we do have control over the now, over what happens in our classrooms. 


Driving home today, I kept thinking about how far we still have to go. How much these brand new kids don’t know. How they don’t get me or us. How hard it is to get them started with something... How a new year is hard and you end up questioning every single thing you do because surely you must be doing something wrong because didn’t this go much better the year before?


Finally, Edu-Bloggery Classic - Posts Worth Revisiting (or Visiting, if you Missed Them the First Time)...

JennWillTeachThe Creature Speaks: Why I Still Teach Frankenstein (10/18/15) / Needing A Connection (3/3/16) - Jennifer Williams, JennWillTeach. A pair from Williams - one about the tragedy of failed human connections, and one about the power of true communication.

Not quite two sides of the same coin, but certainly two chapters in the same Truth Crockpot Cookbook.

Every chance I get, I will continue teaching Frankenstein because it can still speak to a modern audience. With public shaming, bullying, and discrimination seemingly on the rise, our society needs to listen to the Creature. He represents every person society pushes to the fringes; he represents every child seen as not good enough by society; he represents every human made to feel ugly and unlovable.


The world is chaotic, but words, especially written words, can bring order to that chaos. An essay or novel or tweet is NOT creating something from nothing; they are attempts to bring structure and infuse meaning into the disorder. 

I want my students to learn the rules of format and Standard English so they can more effectively communicate with others. Then, I want them to learn how and when to break those rules. 

Break a few rules with @JennWillTech on Twitter or WHY IS AMERICA EVEN AMERICA?  #oklaed 

Stay strong, my beloveds.

You are more than you think and better than you know. As for me, sometimes I feel like the Tiger, but more often... the Lady. In terms of this song, I mean.

Not for the normal reasons you might think.

The Lady and the Tiger

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