MSM 134- Advisory and a Way with Words.


Best Signs
Sign on company bulletin board: “This firm requires no physical-fitness program. Everyone gets enough exercise jumping to conclusions, flying of the handle, running down the boss, flogging dead horses, knifing friends in the back, dodging responsibility, and pushing their luck.”


Dave Bydlowski:  thanks for the email.  Looking forward to hearing from you throughout the year!  Go Science!  (David’s Podcast)

From the Twitterverse:

  • * paulbogush @msstewart You can lead kids..don’t give tool, ask what do you need to be successful, they will give Ans, you suggest tool …
  • * teach42 An to anyone I may have wronged without realizing it this year, I apologize. #Twitonment
  • * tombarrett I’d be grateful of you visited Class 9’s Blog + comment to encourage them as they begin their blogging journey :-
  • * msstewart Anyone ever given opt-in group work? Students have option to work either independently or in a group for different parts of project


Making Hard Decisions:

What would your students do if they discovered that they had broken a rule?

Career Path Discussion:

Tech Tools:

Basic Google Search that everyone should know:

10 Basics tips to make your google searching better and easier.


From their About page: is a high-quality online dictionary: a professional authoritative textual dictionary but with one big difference…
Like a traditional dictionary, Wordia allows users to search for the spelling, meaning and etymology of a word but what makes Wordia unique is the ability for users to explore the personal connotation of word through video.
My Take:
Videos vary in quality. However, look beyond just the video. There are also definitions, etymologies and more. It is a great idea though. You could do something similar with your class. Or your class could contribute.


Free visual English dictionary.  An online interactive English dictionary and thesaurus that helps you find the meanings of words and draw connections to associated words. You can easily see the meaning of each by simply placing the mouse cursor over it.


DocDroid is a completely free online document uploading, conversion and sharing tool.

  • Upload documents in nearly any format.
  • Share the document via eMail, Twitter or Facebook.
  • Fast HTML preview for readers.
  • Let the reader choose in which format he wants to download the document.
  • Multiple file upload is possible.
  • Password protection is possible.
  • Supported formats: PDF, DOCX, DOC, ODT, PAGES, RTF, OTT, XLS, XLSX, TXT, PPT, PPTX, ODP and more!
  • Documents can be deleted by you or are deleted after 60 days without view.


Free Teaching History Poster

You can order a FREE historical thinking poster. They also have resources for elementary, middle and high school.

Math Fun Facts

This archive is designed as a resource for enriching your math courses and nurturing your interest and talent in mathematics! Each Math Fun Fact is a math puzzle or short article that contains a cool mathematics idea. You’ll can learn about the mathematics of things like card shuffling to poker to computer vision to fractals to music, just to name a few. This makes great enrichment material for gifted math students or problem-solving groups.

Commonly misheard expressions

From a friend Down Under. Still a great discussion.

Classroom Secrets- Taking My Students on a Classroom Tour

By Marsha Ratzel
The first tour stop is the “Start of Class Procedure and Class Agenda,” projected on my interactive whiteboard.
I’m not sure the procedures and routines of Room 66 are worth much, monetarily speaking. But collectively they maximize our learning time together by allowing us to accomplish the administrative tasks quickly, efficiently, and without trauma to students. I estimate that they give me an extra 4-5 minutes of class time every day – which means I’m able to squeeze out an extra day of instruction every 10 days. Since we are in school for 10 months, that means I’m creating nearly 18 extra class periods of instruction versus someone who doesn’t use these kinds of tricks. That’s almost a month of extra instructional time in each class.


Did Bill Gates waste billions of dollars over math errors?

Did Bill Gates waste a billion dollars because he failed to understand the formula for the standard deviation of the mean?  Howard Wainer makes the case in the entertaining Picturing the Uncertain World (first chapter with the Gates story free here).

ISTE 2010

Kathleen Blake Yancey:
National Council of Teachers of English
Former President of said organization.
Online Resourcing and Researching
Two large parts
1.  What it was to research and what it means to research now.
2.  How can we help them research online now.
1.  Sources = Materials
2.  Materials = Verbal, Visual, and Multimedia
3.  Use of the Materials of Others
4.  Creation of Materials
One:  An Historical Document
The Victorian Albert Museum of London
Anybody can access the library . . . when they’re open.
Banker’s Hours
7 slips in order to get the material you want to view.
If they’re still open, you get to read it.
The Seattle Public Library
$15.00 cost if you’re not a citizen of Seattle.
Very recently were we allowed to access it ourselves.
Victorian Albert Museum Library has open shelves.
The amount of material that is accessible is very new and very recent.
Two:  Web -> Print Upload
Libraries are getting rid of duplicate copies and divesting themselves of print materials because of space.
JSTOR is a research device that will let students archive material to read, i.e. make their own collection.
Example:  Visual Search ability
Think of it as a MindMap research context.
Three:  Ecology!
New England Journal of Medicine
Wired Science
LA Times Online
DNA Talk – off topic source
Genetics and Health
The Medical Quack
The Classroom (STEDMAN/YANCEY)
Knows how information/knowledge is created, historically and currently.
Knows academic conventions
Knows IP/copyright law (including fair use)
Composes ethically with the materials of others.
Finds appropriate information
Contextualizes information
Evaluates information
Creates new meanings with information
Searching Text/Context
Focused and systematic (Card Catalogues/Search Engines)
Stumbling -> Physical context as search instrument (Principle of Proximity:  What’s next door?)
Breadcrumbing/Linking -> Electronic, hypertextual context as search instrument (principle of conceptual proximity:  What’s related?)
The first two are direct, the last is indirect.
Sam Wineberg’s Three Moves That Make History
Corroboration:  Walther Fisher’s “Fidelity”
Convergency begets competence.
His book:  How Knowledge Is Made
Case Study I:  How do they compare?
1.  Analysis of an Encyclopedia entry and a Wikipedia entry – an opportunity to consider how a given term is defined in two spaces purporting to provide information of the same quality; intended to help us understand how they are alike and different and what one might do in creating a Wikipedia entry.
Case Study II:  Answering a question using online resources.
1.  Is Bright Star accurate?
2.  Patients Like Me
Shows the patient’s symptoms through the view of the patient.
3.  New York Times:  State of the Union Addresses Search Tool.
4.  Weather/Climate Events
Which sources of information do you trust and why?
Convergence Begets Confidence
1.  What sources did you find?
2.  How do they compare?
3.  Can you map them?
4.  How credible are they?
5.  How did you know?
And just the other day ….
Beth:  A lot of it begins with medical/pharmaceutical research and then considers research in other areas.  At a quick glance, really just a quick Google search [if you want a more complete bibliography, I have one in my office …]
Case Study III:  What’s the Story Behind Copenhagen?
The New York Times:  Times Topics
Case Study IV:  How Would You Document the Decade?
The New York Times:  Documenting the Decade.
How would you document the decade and you get one image to represent the decade.
Each picture comes with student written text, so it doesn’t stand alone.
The Learning Network (NYT)
Student challenge:  Create a New York Times ‘Found Poem’.  (example given)
National Gallery of Writing Website
Create a profile
scanable images
Teachers can create their own gallery and have the ability to approve/disapprove pieces.

Events & Happenings:

Calendar of Events:

NMSA News:

Other News:

  • ISTE Eduverse Talks are the recorded sessions held on ISTE Island every week. Join ISTE in their Second Life conference location for their weekly talks on education.
    • The ISTE Special Interest Group:  Virtual Environments is holding meetings on Mondays from 4:00 – 6:00 pm (SLT) on ISTE Island.
  • The Ohio Middle Level Association will hold their annual conference February 17 – 18, 2011.
  • Second Life:
    • Regular Tuesday meetings are scheduled. See the board on the ISTE Island for up to the minute details.  Check frequently this week as the ISTE Annual Convention is this week.
    • Video: Educational Uses of Second Life