MSM 296:  Doin’ Some Reading.  Not Much, Just a Spritz!

Jokes You Can Use:


Q: Why do little melons have to have big weddings?

A: Because they “cantelope.”


It was an extremely rough English Channel crossing from Weymouth to Jersey, and one wretched green-faced passenger was hugging the rail when a steward approached him.

“Lunch, sir?” asked the tactless steward.

“No, thanks,” groaned the passenger. “Just throw it overboard and save me the trouble…

This door opens outwards please do not stand directly in front of doors. (Also in braille).

This door opens outwards please do not stand directly in front of doors. (Also in braille).


It’s hard to see, but the same thing is written in Braille at the bottom of the sign.  The Law of Unintended Consequences just waiting to happen here . . .


Eileen Award:

  • iTunes:  BWPennyS



Nice Guys Finish First

*Warning, Tit for Tat is a phrase that is used.

Middle School Science Minute

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or


Baking Bread

I was recently reading the November, 2014 issue of “Science Scope,” a magazine written for middle school science teachers, published by the National Science Teachers Association.

In this issue, I read an article entitled “Scope on Safety” which includes the Science Safety Question of the Month.  The article is written by Ken Roy, Director of Environmental Science for the Glastonbury, Connecticut Public Schools.  This month’s question is:

“I am having students bake bread and test factors that affect how it rises.  Can students eat the bread after they have completed the activity?”



From the Twitterverse:

Skype Classroom ‏@SkypeClassroomTeachers, bring the magic of @BBC’s Enchanted Kingdom into your classroom with Skype!  #projectbasedlearning
Alice Browning ‏@atbrowningHeadbandz en français! @THS_UpperSchool @AATFrench


Jonathan Byrne ‏@jbteachermanRolls Royce: Phantom Menace #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

Alpha Romeo and Juliet #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

Flight of the Navigator #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

Mercedes Benz-Hur #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

A Land Rover Before Time #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Film Festival #DriveThruMovieTitle #cheating

(Harrison Ford) Escape From Alcatraz #DriveThruMovieTitle #freep

Scott McLeod ‏@mcleodGrading New York Teachers – When the Formulas Lie | @nytimes
Monte Tatom retweeted APPS and EDTECH @AppsEdTech  ·  Jan 21

A list of 27 teacher-reviewed #FETC #edtech tools on @EdShelf  #FETC15 #satchat #FETC2015 #edchat

#mschat every Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time.  And as Troy says, “The Twitter never stops!”


Follow Up:

When we share “MY NASA DATA” and go to the Live Action Server (LAS), teachers and students can access information at a basic, intermediate, and advanced level:

When we share “Skeptical Science” with teachers, the information in things like the “Climate Myths” provides science at a basic, intermediate, and advanced level:


These are great sites, but they give teachers the opportunity to “tailor” the use of data to the appropriate needs of the students.






Spritz is the best way to engage with content in the digital age.

We deliver a focused reading experience and help readers get their

content faster, with less effort and across any device or screen size.

Let the kids have fun:



Readsy is a tool to help you skim large amounts of text by focusing your eyes on one word at a time without having to move them. It is powered by Spritz – you can read more about it here. To register for higher speeds, click “Login” on the top right of the Spritz box, and create an account with Spritz.

Akash Jain is a 3rd year undergraduate at Princeton University majoring in Computer Science. The code for the site is hosted on GitHub here and the logo was designed by the talented Matteo Kruijssen.



Spreeder is a free online speed reading software designed to improve your reading speed and comprehension.

Spreeder is a free service provided by 7-Speed-ReadingTM.


Every Kid Needs a Hero


Introduction to Forgotten Books

“WELCOME to Forgotten Books, the world’s largest online library with 484,473 books available on demand. This website has been designed using the very latest technologies to provide our members with many features never seen before.

Our flagship technology Intelligent Bookshelf™ is a world leader in book recommendation and uses artificial intelligence to determine exactly the books you’d most like to read from our vast library.

More than just books; Forgotten Books also features advanced analytical data. Every single word, page and image inside each and every one of our 484,473 books have been analyzed, indexed and classified. With this valuable research information, we can tell you virtually anything about anything, from the most commonly used word in fiction books published in 1765, to the book with the most images of cats in the first 20 pages. Or perhaps some more useful information, such as a list of every word in the English language in order of usage frequency.”

Offers Free and Paid memberships. Free membership comes with a book a day (or not, you can skip that).


Web Spotlight:

Police Investigate Family for Letting Their Kids Walk Home Alone. Parents, We All Need to Fight Back.

Danielle and Alexander Meitiv explicitly ally themselves with the “free range” parenting movement, which believes that children have to take calculated risks in order to learn to be self-reliant.


Random Thoughts . . .

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