MSM 493: Day, Night, Hold on a Minute (or 59 seconds)


A lizard went for a job interview. 

Agent: “Can you do retail?”

Lizard: “Yes”.

Today I thought of a color that doesn’t exist. 

Unfortunately, it is just a pigment of my imagination. 

A shop assistant fought off a robber with his labelling gun. 

The police are now looking for a man with a price on his head. 

My son kept chewing on electrical cords. 

I had to ground him.

I’ve got a entryway with broken hinges. If you know how to fix hinges, my door is always open. 

What do you call a chicken that haunts a house? 

A poultrygeist

What do you call it when you put your Grandmother on speed dial?

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Middle School Science Minute  

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

The Day-Night Cycle

I was recently reading the November/December 2020 issue of “Science & Children” a publication of the National Science Teaching Association.  In this issue, I read the “Formative Assessment Probes“ column written by Page Keeley.  Her article was entitled “The Day-Night Cycle: Adding Models to Probe Explanations.”

As you select formative assessment probes to use with your lessons, consider ways to have students use a model to support their explanation.  In this example, students use the Earth’s motion and position in relation to the Sun to explain the day-night cycle and why it seems to us from an Earth perspective, that the Sun appears to rise, move across the sky, and set.  Models, such as a globe and a flashlight representing the Sun are used to explain the pattern of day and night.

Reports from the Front Lines

  • Improvisation
  • Back to School?  
  • Vaccination – Are you In?
  • Online Learning Musings –   
  • Student Teaching
    • Second experience
    • Mentoring
  • Evaluation

The Twitterverse

Pernille Ripp @pernilleripp

I will have the chance to read aloud 12 picture books to my students – while I have many favorites, I am curious, what would be the one picture book you would read aloud to middle schoolers?

Dr. Trisha Sotropa @t_sotropa

I have noticed that some teachers try to get right to content at the beginning of an online session. But a few minutes visiting at the beginning and end of class can help build relationships with and between students. *Visiting is not wasted time*.

Ditch That Textbook  @DitchThatTxtbk

25 ways to create experiences your students will remember…

PAMLE   @pamleorg

Recognize those amazing administrators, teachers, student teachers, and students who have made this very difficult year so much better by nominating them for a PAMLE Award

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


Plagiarism Checker

Best free plagiarism checker for your content, Now paste upto 1500 words in the text area or upload your text file and click “Check for Plagiarism” to get instant & accurate results.

The University of Vilnius puts documents online for FREE!

Hundreds of scanned documents from the archives are now available for free.  Court records, land records, maps and photographs are also available.  The written language stuff might not be as useful as the image libraries.  

Music for a Pandemic  

Need some music to make it through grading?  Try the following YouTube channels with music from Tchaikovsky and well, if it ain’t Baroque, don’t fix it!  


Stay at home with Tchaikovsky:  

Sponsor a Musician:  

Web Spotlight:  

How to Be Talent

Some really great thoughts and quotes on how to be good at a job. This is focused on being “on-air talent”, but the lessons are appropriate to life in general. 

*Warning: one swear word in the post.

Why Scientists Want to Shorten the Minute to 59 Seconds

That includes this new suggestion from scientists: We should consider shortening the minute to just 59 seconds, at least for one “negative leap second” that will better line us up with Earth’s real rotation.

This is on the heels of a year marked by many shorter-than-average days, following several years in which Earth has rotated faster than maybe ever before.

Why does Earth spin differently to begin with? That part is both more natural and more complicated.

Looks Aren’t Everything, Believe Me I’m a Model

May  be useful to watch without necessarily sharing with students. Important to know your population.  

Taking a Stand Does Not Imply Bias

Click the Play button below to listen to the show!