MSM 228: Power Hungry Internet- Raspberry Pi . . . Ummm, Pie…

Presented in collaboration with the Association for Middle Level Education.

Jokes You Can Use:

Two prisoners were making their escape over the jailhouse roof when one of them dislodged a tile. “Who’s there shouted a guard. The first prisoner replied with a convincing imitation of a cat’s meow. Reassured, the guard when back to his rounds
But then the second prisoner dislodged another tile. The guard repeated, “Who’s there?”
“The other cat,” answered the prisoner.

A circus owner walked into a bar to see everyone crowded around a table watching a little show. On the table was an upside down pot and a duck tap dancing on it. The circus owner was so impressed that he offered to buy the duck from its owner. After some wheeling and dealing they settled for $10,000 for the duck and the pot.
Three days later the circus owner runs back to the bar in anger, “Your duck is a rip-off! I put him on the pot before a whole audience and he didn’t dance a single step!” “So?” asked the duck’s former owner, “did you remember to light the candle under the pot?”

Teacher: What are the four main food groups?
Students: Canned, frozen, instant, and lite.

A little girl complained that she didn’t want to go back to school.
“But why, Lisa?” asked her mother.
“Well, I can’t read, I can’t write, and they won’t let me talk.”

Eileen Award:

  • Twitter: Bethany Beaudrie, Derek McCoy, Vinnie Stocker
  • eMail:  Dr. John Harrison


Unrelated People Who Look Like Each Other

Middle School Science Minute

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

Middle School Science Minute — Citizen Science

I was recently reading the November, 2012 issue of Science Scope, a publication of the National Science Teachers Association.  In the magazine, Jennifer Fee and Nancy Trautmann, wrote an article entitled “Connecting to Your Community Through Birds and Citizen Science.”  Within the article they explained what is meant by the term “Citizen Science.”  They defined a citizen scientist as a person who collaborates with scientists to gather data on projects and contributes to scientific research.

From the Twitterverse:

* Steve ‏@2learn2
Why Nate Silver Can Save Math Education in America
* David Tebo ‏@tebotweets
Pantophobia in Education:
* Jerry Blumengarten ‏@cybraryman1
My Project Based Learning page: … #rechat
* Bill Ferriter ‏@plugusin
This @samchaltain bit on the pros and cons of longer school days should be required reading for #edpolicy wonks:
* Scott McLeod ‏@mcleod
10 Steps to a Successful School iPad Program  #edtech #plaea #ukstl
* nancyflanagan ‏@nancyflanagan
Common Core headed towards a $500 billion scandal. Imagine the horror as state after state reports drastic “drops”… …
* Steve Cushing ‏@Montberte
The Best Social Studies Sites Of 2012 — Part Two
* Eric Sheninger ‏@NMHS_Principal
Infographic: How Does Digital Learning Contribute to Deeper Learning?
* Beth Still ‏@BethStill
Guest post by @kris_still on how to be prepared in the event of a crisis. … #nebedu #cpchat
* CBC Toronto ‏@CBCToronto
Ontario teachers confirm 1-day walkout
Monte Tatom @drmmtatom
8 Useful Video Apps for your #iPad #fhuedu320 #fhucid ~ for @MSMatters followers
#mschat every Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time.


Teachers are talent scouts

Spotting talent and helping students see their own gift is one of those things that makes teaching so intoxicating to me. I get to do this? I am a talent scout. Are you?

Web Spotlight:

Bomb Sight Mapping

The Bomb Sight is using the Bomb Census Maps as the primary data in the tools we are developing. The maps are part of an extensive array of material collected during the Bomb Census Survey 1940 to 1945, organised by the Ministry of Home Security. The records are held in The National Archive (TNA), and we are using the maps with a non-commercial education licence.


We know the internet is huge but it’s also growing at a crazy fast pace – doubling in size every 18-24 months! While this is staggering many people fail to think about what it actually takes to keep the Internet up and running every day. As it turns out its actually more than the auto industry and all that energy isn’t being used very efficiently.

Amazing Anamorphic Illusions!

You’ve got to see it to believe it.

Anatomy of Preservation

This time-lapse video from LSA’s Museum of Zoology takes the bat species Artibeus jamacanensis from specimen to display. The process might be a little stomach-churning, but then again, good science isn’t always mess-free.

As one of the largest university museums in the world, the Museum of Zoology is a crucial resource for use in research, conservation, and education. Studying animals such as Artibeus jamacanensis allows scientists to craft a tangible record of life on Earth.!

Departing Space Station Commander Provides Tour of Orbital Laboratory

In her final days as Commander of the International Space Station, Sunita Williams of NASA recorded an extensive tour of the orbital laboratory and downlinked the video on Nov. 18, just hours before she, cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and Flight Engineer Aki Hoshide of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency departed in their Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft for a landing on the steppe of Kazakhstan. The tour includes scenes of each of the station’s modules and research facilities with a running narrative by Williams of the work that has taken place and which is ongoing aboard the orbital outpost.

How long will we live — and how well?

A new analysis looks not only at the number of years we can expect to live, but also at the number of years we can expect to live in good health. In most of the world, life expectancy is longer than it was 20 years ago, but often a smaller percentage of those years will be healthy ones.

Taking Responsibility

This was apparently from a group project.

AMLE Annual Conference Sessions:

State Affiliate Meeting
Update on the state of AMLE
Where were we last year?
Top Priorities for his first year
Taking steps

Top Priorities for his first year.
People come first
Emphasize the AMLE mission
Develop a vision for customer service
We are the brand
Taking Steps
1.  Through stakeholder input determine if this draft vision aligns to the Mission Statement and Goals of AMLE and what AMLE wants to become.
2.  Prepare the board of trustees to consider adopting a new strategic plan.
3.  Develop measures of success to chart progress of the mission and goals for striving towards the vision.
4.  Annually identify key strategic priority areas and execution plans for accomplishment of these annual priorities.
Where are we now?
Strategic Plan was approved by Board of Trustees in April.
Strategic Plan goals distributed to stakeholders in August
Strategic Plan strategies distributed of stakeholders in September
Structure of Strategic Plan
•Mission, Vision, Core values
•Six goals
•28 Strategies
Updated Mission and Vision
•Mission:  The Association for Middle Level Education is dedicated to improving the educational experiences of all students ages 10-15 by providing vision, knowledge, and resources to educators and leaders.
•Vision:  The Association for Middle Level Education is the leading national and international organization advancing the education of all students ages 10 to 15, helping them succeed as learners and make positive contributions to their communities and to the world.
(Current membership is around 30,000)
Strategic Plan Goals
Goals are numbered, but not according to priority.
•Goal 1:  Increase AMLE’s visibility with educators and policymakers worldwide.
•Goal 2:  Refine research-based professional development programs and services to ensure they are timely and relevant.
•Goal 3:  Develop partnerships and collaborative relationships with affiliates and other coalitions to influence programs and legislation to improve middle level education.
•Goal 4:  Increase membership.
•Goal 5:  Develop a business model and financial plan that places AMLE on sound financial footing and allows flexibility for strategic initiatives.
Goal 6:  Strengthen the board’s capacity to deliver AMLE’s mission and vision.

Commentary:  The focus of the association is now looking at state affiliates as partners in a coalition, not competitors.

Goal 1:  Increase AMLE’s visibility with educators and policymakers worldwide
•1.1:  Promote the significance of middle level education philosophy and practice.
•1.2:  Create web-based delivery models, including social media, for content and communications.
Lots of folks liked the app for the conference.
•1.3:  Make the website current, visually attractive, and user-friendly.
The number of iPad users visiting the site doubles monthly.
•1.4:  Review the efficacy of the current brand and make necessary changes.
Unify the brand logo through a uniform standard of “look”.
Doing a new brand study and it’s representation.
#4 on this list will come before #3.

Goal 2:  Refine research-based professional development programs and services to ensure they are timely and relevant.
•2.1:  Regularly review This We Believe and revise as needed.
•2.2:  Initiate and publish ongoing middle level education research.
•2.3:  Continue to present a high-quality annual conference that offers relevant and timely content.
•2.4:  Develop theme based conferences based on regional or national topics that are research based, relevant, and needs based.
•2.5:  Revise the content of Leadership Institutes to serve new and continuing participants and provide follow-up activities.
•2.6:  Increase partnerships with state departments of education.
Could we commission a study that the characteristics of This We Believe improve school achievement.
How do we get to the point where the association is driving the research in the field?
Our numbers this year are half of the numbers from the last time in Portland.
How do we make the flagship product meet the attendees where they are?
IDEA:  gear our conference to meet the initiatives in the state to get the State Board of Ed on board.
Theme based mini-conferences.
That’s ironic!  Think of the things we’re doing with drive-in conferences in Michigan.
We need to survey districts to find out what their strategies are.
Conference attendees are not always repeaters and so they don’t get the benefit of having repeating presenters.
Revise the content to serve new attendees vs. repeaters.
Increasing affiliate capacity
Increasing partnerships with affiliates and teacher preparation and the superintendents at State Depts. of Education.
How do we get a piece of legislation codified in 50 different locals?

Goal 3:  Develop partnerships and collaborative relationships with affiliates and other coalitions to influence programs and legislation to improve middle level education.
•3.1:  Update the “Success inthe Middle” policy guide as a tool for influencing public policy and education standards.
•3.2:  Provide advocacy tools for AMLE members and partners.
•3.3:  Provide resources relevant to targeted education policy issues.
•3.4:  Engage with the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Governors Association to enhance their understanding of the needs of middle grades youth.
•3.5:  Collaborate with affiliate and coalition leaders, including organizations with missions that foster diversity in education.
•3.6:  Reconsider recommendations from the 2010 Affiliate Task Force Report.
•3.7:  Develop a plan to collaborate with international associations.
There is a legislative piece of software that would be more cost effective to provide to affiliates vs. affiliates purchasing for each state.
Getting Ex. Dir.s at the table with State Boards on implementation legislation.  i.e. Common Core
Goal is to have half of the Affiliate Task Force recommendations done by next year.

Goal 4:  Increase membership.
•4.1:  Determine membership benefits.
Is there a benefit to having a “free” membership?  Enticement.
•4.2:  Evaluate current  membership structures and fees.
•4.3:  Target new-entry educators.
•4.4:  Develop a plan to increase Collegiate Middle Level Association chapters and members.
•4.5:  Develop global membership.
•4.6: Cultivate diverse membership.
Reduce the types of membership.  Too many choices.
Building membership (5) usually listed, not all the teachers in the building.

Goal 5:  Develop a business model and financial plan that places AMLE on sound financial footing and allows flexibility for strategic initiatives.
•5.1:  Develop financial reports that align resources to mission, vision, and core values.
•5.2:  Develop an operating plan to launch an opportunity fund to support new iniatives that align to the  mission, vision, and strategic goals of AMLE.
How would we launch something big if we had the opportunity to?

Goal 6:  Strengthen the board’s capacity to deliver AMLE’s mission and vision.
•6.1:  Prepare board members to advance and articulate AMLE’s messages.
•6.2:  Review the board’s structure, composition, and function and make adjustments, as needed, to support AMLE’s mission and vision and reflect the changing demographics of students and educators.
•6.3:  Provide appropriate and ongoing professional learning for the board.
Board structure and governance needs to be revisited.
Do you need an Executive Board?  If so, your board is too big.
Does your board represent geography or expertise?
Finding more professional development for the board.
Training to be better board members.

Can we reach the summit, together?
These strategies will take time to implement.

Additional dialogue