MSM 245 Sing the Song, Trade the Book, Shake the Spear(e).

Presented in collaboration with the Association for Middle Level Education.


Jokes You Can Use:

A boy had reached four without giving up the habit of sucking his thumb, though his mother had tried everything from bribery to reasoning to painting it with lemon juice to discourage the habit. Finally she tried threats, warning her son that, “If you don’t stop sucking your thumb, your stomach is going to blow up like a balloon.” Later that day, walking in the park, mother and son saw a pregnant woman sitting on a bench. The four-year-old considered her gravely for a minute, then spoke to her saying, “Uh-oh … I know what you’ve been doing.”


Q: What did the guy say when he walked into the bar?

A: Ouch.


The teacher says, “I wish you’d pay a little attention Mary.”

“I am paying as little as I can Mrs. Bell,” said Mary.


Q: What do you call a cow without feet?

A: Ground beef



What Career Is Right For Me?

Middle School Science Minute

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

Middle School Science Minute-Best 6-8 Trade Books Part 3


Each year the National Science Teachers Association announces the outstanding science trade books from grades K-12.  This list includes books published in 2012.  This is the third in a series of podcasts that will look at the best books for grades 6 – 8.


The books included in this podcast are:


1.  Super Nature Encyclopedia: The 100 Most Incredible Creatures on the Planet


2.  Scholastic Discover More: Elements


3.  Moonbird: A Year on the Wind With the Great Survivor B95

From the Twitterverse:

* Matt Gomez ‏@mattBgomez

6 Apps You Should Be Using with Evernote

* Scott McLeod ‏@mcleod

In the Digital Age, What Becomes of the Library?  #edtech

* russeltarr ‏@russeltarr

How To Run Your Meetings Like Apple and Google:

* Kelly Lippard ‏@Lippardteach

Anatomy of Teachers’ Brain  via @zite

* Sue Waters ‏@suewaters

Making Videos In the Common Craft Style – Rubric Included —

* Scott McLeod ‏@mcleod

RT @garystager: @BHS_Doyle Apologizing for teachers being the last adults in captivity to use computers has become a growth industry #edtech

* Rich Kiker ‏@rkiker

The unholy trinities of classroom technology usage.  #edtech

* Kathy R. Cook ‏@kathycook1

18 obsolete words, which never should have gone out of style …

* Scott McLeod ‏@mcleod

Why Common Core tests won’t be what Arne Duncan promised

* Monte Tatom ‏@drmmtatom

iNACOL ~ National Standards for Quality Online Teaching:  #EWchat #fhuedu642

* Monte Tatom ‏@drmmtatom

“8 Steps To Great Digital Storytelling” | Edudemic #fhucid #fhuedu642 #edwebchat #edtech …

* Todd Bloch ‏@blocht574 30 May

#mschat 5-30-13 Maintaining student engagement

#mschat every Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time.






Free Vintage Posters

Useful for graphics. Be aware that some images may be inappropriate.


Dictionary of numbers

Chrome extension that explains large numbers in terms of common things.


Shakespeare Uncovered

Shakespeare Uncovered explores the complete plays of William Shakespeare—one of the greatest writers to have ever lived. From his comedies to histories to tragedies, the series looks at the stories that have shaped our cultural history: seeking out each play’s inspiration, finding the moments and places that set every scene, as well as examining the words that gave life to Shakespeare’s world both in the past and present.

This thematic collection — which adheres to national learning standards — contains video segments from the series, informational texts, discussion questions, and suggestions for extension activities to enhance your students’ reading, viewing, and appreciation of Shakespeare’s works.


Developing Communication Skills With YouTube & iPad Videos


Ginger Gregory is the Gifted Resource Teacher at Lakeview Elementary School in Yukon, Oklahoma, and currently has 117 videos on her classroom YouTube channel. Ginger has used the six iPads in her classroom and her free, district-provided YouTube channel (since the Yukon school district participates in the Google Apps for Education program) to help her students develop oral communication skills, oral fluency, as well as digital literacy skills this semester.

Web Spotlight:

Grading Apple’s digital textbook technology

Shortly after his world history students began a pilot program testing a digital textbook for the iPad, Ken Halla noticed something different: His students were actually reading their textbooks.

“To call it a book anymore,” Halla said, “is a false pretense.”

A year later, Apple’s digital textbook effort still seems to be in the early stages.

Where they’re used, the tablet and the digital textbooks find enthusiastic responses.

But there’s a long way to go before students using iPads to read their iBooks becomes the rule, rather than the leading-edge exception, in American education.

“Textbooks for middle school aren’t available,” said Marsha Messinger, language arts and social studies teacher at Robert Saligman Middle School of Perelman Jewish Day School in Philadelphia. “They [the textbook publishers] are working their way from college down.”

….is ready to push iBooks and other digital textbooks when more schools are ready to buy.

But the same educators who complain about the lack of available content also offer high praise for the iBooks that do exist.

Teachers have never relied entirely on textbooks. Often they cobble together lessons out of worksheets and other reading materials that fade as copies are made from copies. College students have traditionally bought class “readers” filled with excerpts and articles.

Now? If teachers find an article or a PDF that illustrates their point, they can plug it into iBooks Author and distribute custom-tailored, in-house digital supplements for their students.

“They don’t really have a set textbook, so the little bits and pieces that they’ve found to teach from, that’s the way they pull it all together,”

“For the faculty that has been using it, aggregation has been a key driver,” he said. “Rather than run off a four-page PDF, they take it and dress it up with some video and pictures.”

Creative Strategies’ Bajarin said that textbook publishers—like newspaper publishers before them—have proven reluctant to give up the income associated with printed-paper products.


The Periodic Song!