MSM 232: Fresh Prince of Buying Happiness

Presented in collaboration with the Association for Middle Level Education.

Jokes You Can Use:

A spider just crawled under the keyboard, oh wait, it’s under “control”.
What’s Michelle O’Bama’s favorite vegetable?
What are the strongest days of the week?
My friends and I put on performance about puns. It was basically a play on words.
Why do the French only use one egg for an omelette?
What did the shy pebble wish?

BTW, you mentioned Chemistry Jokes during the podcast.  Well you are right, I so share them “periodically.”  Here you go:

Tell a Potassium Joke?  K
What did the element say to the police?   I CU (Copper)

Do you know any jokes about sodium?  Na

How much do I make?  Iron enough


Can Money Buy Happiness

We often hear it, but how true is the phrase ‘Money can’t buy happiness’? Is there a correlation between the two, and if so, what can we learn from it? It turns out, if you think money and happiness are exclusive, you simply aren’t spending it right.!

2012 Sports Illustrated Kids of the Year

Featuring LeBron James,
Conner is 9-years-old, and Cayden is two years younger. Cayden was born with a debilitating condition called spastic cerebral palsy, but that hasn’t stopped him from competing in triathlons (with a little help from his big brother). Cayden ditches his wheelchair for a cart or stroller, and Conner runs and bikes with Cayden in tow.

Family Treasures

Posted by Vicki Davis
I’m supposed to turn in the words for my son’s annual ad today. I’ve been writing at 5 am. It is just one page. One page to summarize how I feel and what I want him to carry with him.


Fresh Prince of Bel-Aire – Translated.

Middle School Science Minute

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

I was recently reading the Winter 2012-2013 issue of Green Teacher Magazine, a magazine for Education for Planet Earth.  I read an article entitled “Concrete Without Quarries” written by Sam Stier, Dona Boggs and Dave Jones.  The focus of the article is on sustainable chemistry labs inspired by nature.  They provide a lab that helps students create concrete from car exhaust and seawater.  But the greater focus of the article was to get teachers who teach chemistry to students to think of the approaches and message we send.  They provide a framework for sustainable chemistry inspired by nature.

From the Twitterverse:

* Todd Bloch ‏@blocht574
@jskramer28 We are moving to a new model in district with NWEA tests that is helping moral of staff but State data is pointless now. #mschat
* Two Teacherz ‏@askteacherzcom
#TwoThumbZup RT @MrL_PHSHistory: RT @LauraGilchrist4: 13 Resources 4 Social Studies Teachers … #sschat #wrldchat #mschat
* Karen S. ‏@Karen550k
What English classes should look like in Common Core era  Pay attention #English #teachers #educhat #edchat #mschat
* Education Shift ‏@ED_SHIFT
Great social studies lesson Guide to worldwide etiquette from @swissotel … #sschat #edchat #engchat ##pbl #mschat #edu
* edutopia ‏@edutopia
[Free Downloads] Lesson Plans & Resources for #Arts Integration  #artsint #midleveled #mschat
* Monte Tatom ‏@drmmtatom
Is 1:1 the New One Size Fits All?  #fhuedu642 #fhuedu320 ~ for @MSMatters followers
* Monte Tatom ‏@drmmtatom
7 Teacher Questions About Common Core State Standards  #fhuedu610 #fhuedu508
* Monte Tatom ‏@drmmtatom
5 Fun Online Games that Disguise Important Lessons  #fhuedu320 #eLearning
* Scott Meech ‏@smeech
A Look Back – EdReach
* Rod Rock ‏@RodRock1
#MichEd Gov Snyder: 2013 is the last year 4 MEAP. Results will have 0 meaning. Save $ by not giving it next year. Use $ for tech or e-c-hood
#mschat every Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time.



Free Plagiarism Checker

Duplicate Content Checker for Students, Teachers, Writers. Free Turnitin Alternative.

Google Doc Sharing

Simplifying Sharing through Google Docs with students. Control whether documents can be seen by just a few students or groups or the whole class.

Install doctopus from any Google Spreadsheet, though preferably one that you can use as a one-time roster for tracking a particular project with a particular group of students.

Install from the Script Gallery…accessible from the “Tools” menu in a Google Spreadsheet.

Currently, doctopus is in the “featured” section of the gallery!

Note: Upon wise advice from my wife, I got rid of the apostrophe referenced in this video and renamed it simply DOCTOPUS…  making it easier to search, and to say;)

Also Note: Make sure to FREEZE THE TOP ROW of your roster sheet prior to running in group project mode.  The script should also prompt you to do this.

If you like Doctopus, you’ll probably also like:

autoCrat – easy to use, flexible Docs merge utility that does personalized creation, sharing, and emailing of templated Docs using Google Spreadsheet data.

formMule – a multipurpose, flexible merged email creator that runs from Google Spreadsheets

Listening Circles

Each such circle pulls in students from different social, racial, and interest groups from around the school to identify and solve problems related to campus climate. Adults sit outside the circle, in a “listen only” mode

Web Spotlight:


The Shape of Stories

By Maya Eilam
My take on visually presenting Kurt Vonnegut’s theories about archetypal stories, designed after researching the subject.


How much of a language is silent? What does it look like when you take the silence out? Can we use code as a tool to answer these questions?

How to Read Faster: Bill Cosby’s Three Proven Strategies

“Nobody gets something for nothing in the reading game.”
Bill Cosby may be best-known as the beloved personality behind his eponymous TV show, but he earned his doctorate in education and has been involved in several projects teaching the essential techniques of effective reading, including a PBS series on reading skills.

Why you can’t cry in Space

Astronauts can, certainly, tear up — they’re human, after all. But in zero gravity, the tears themselves can’t flow downward in the way they do on Earth. The moisture generated has nowhere to go. Tears, Feustel put it, “don’t fall off of your eye … they kind of stay there.”

Look at yourself objectively

In the 1840s, hospitals were dangerous places. Mothers who went in to give birth often didn’t make it out.


U.S. Education Deserves the Same Statistical Sophistication as Baseball and Elections

by Martin Carnoy (Co-authored with Richard Rothstein)
For better or worse, we’re a nation that’s coming to respect statistics.Billy Bean convinced us that better statistics could beat bigger payrolls in sports. Nate Silver helped humble Karl Rove’s money machine with better statistics.
But here is where a more careful look at statistics suggests a very different story. In a report we just completed, What Do International Tests Really Show about American Student Performance, we show that Duncan and other pundits’ conclusions from international test results are oversimplified, often exaggerated, and misleading. They ignore the complexity of testing and may lead educational policymakers to pursue inappropriate and even harmful reforms.

Half-Baked Ideas . . .

Moodle and BigBlueButton- if each teacher was given $100 to get their own shared hosting, would it be considered expensive? from Moodle Community.