MSM 544: This is Our Villain Arc!


Shawn and Troy talk about Moodle 4, moving resources to digital, and more. Dave has an Ocean full of good stuff. 


After an unsuccessful harvest, why did the farmer decide to try a career in music?

  • Because he had a ton of sick beets.

I only seem to get sick on weekdays. 

  • I must have a weekend immune system.

My friend was showing me his tool shed and pointed to a ladder. “That’s my stepladder,” he said. 

  • “I never knew my real ladder.”

I don’t get why Marvel doesn’t use the Hulk to advertise more. 

  • He’s basically one big Banner.

What brand of underwear do scientists wear? 

  • Kelvin Klein.

Did you know your pupils are the last part to stop working when you die?

  • They dilate.

My wife asked me the other day where I got so much candy.

  • I said, “I always have a few Twix up my sleeve.”

Where do pirates get their hooks? 

  • Second-hand stores.

Of all the inventions of the last 100 years, the dry erase board has to be the most remarkable.

What do you call a line of men waiting to get haircuts? 

  • A barberqueue.

What do you call a beehive without an exit? 

  • Unbelievable.

This morning, Siri said, “Don’t call me Shirley.” 

  • I accidentally left my phone in Airplane mode.

It’s easy to convince ladies not to eat Tide Pods, 

  • but harder to deter gents.

I can’t take my dog to the pond anymore because the ducks keep attacking him. 

  • That’s what I get for buying a pure bread dog.

  • Have you heard about those new corduroy pillows? They’re making headlines.

Middle School Science Minute  

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

K12Science Podcast:  The Ocean

I was recently reading the March/April 2022 issue of “Science & Children” a publication of the National Science Teaching Association.  In this issue, I read the Formative Assessment column, written by Page Keeley.  She wrote an article entitled, “Uncovering Student Ideas About Earth’s Defining Feature: The Ocean.”

Earth’s ocean is the defining feature of our planet.  Principle #1 of the “Ocean Literacy Framework” states the Earth has one big ocean with many features.  But research shows that both children and adults believe a common misconception that the oceans are not connected and act alone.

Reports from the Front Lines

  • Moodle perceptions
  • Moodle 4 impressions

The Twitterverse  

Vicki Davis @coolcatteacher

Wow. The stories we tell kids are so important. Hat tip @michaelcatt for this one.

Quote Tweet

  C. S. Lewis  @CSLewisDaily

“Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage.” -C.S. Lewis

Brian Mendler  @BrianMendler

#Teachers with few behavior issues have the following in common: 1. Rarely gets offended. 2. Provides very little down time. 3. Talks w kids before/after class. 4. Asks lots of questions. 5. Don’t need the last word. Add to the list #ThatOneKid #edchat

Todd Finley  @finleyt

Some alternatives to final exams | Brain Blast #edchat #assessment #edleadership #cdned #teachers #education #students

Nicholas Ferroni  @NicholasFerroni

Teaching gives me life, but being a teacher is sucking the life out of me.

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


3 Counterintuitive Findings About Motivation That Teachers Can Use

  • Myth: To motivate students for a difficult task, it’s important to make it fun and entertaining
  • Myth: A student who needs a bit of a push on homework just needs some advice from their teacher.
  • Myth: Getting students to set goals for themselves is the most important way to motivate them.


Wick Editor

Free, open-source editor for creating animations. This can also be used to create games.  Web version (great for Chromebooks) as well as a downloadable version.


Display the teacher screen on student devices (computers, iPads, etc). Site creates a URL that is shared. Only the teacher needs a (free) account.

Web Spotlight:

‘It’s Life or Death’: The Mental Health Crisis Among U.S. Teens

Lots of interesting points in this article. Important on the changes 

Can You Dig This 1940s Slang?

Just some interesting slang to share (*note that “Buzzed” is included)

Schools are struggling to hire special education teachers. Hawaii may have found a fix

Middle School Go Be Great Digital Journal

116 page journal from Varsity Brands. This is done as a Google Slides.

The ‘Science of Reading’ and English-Language Learners: What the Research Says

AXIS The Culture Translator  

Too Much, Too Soon

What it is: A longform feature and a short documentary from the New York Times examines the neuroscience behind the mental health crisis in today’s teenagers.

Why it offers new insight: The reporting here synthesizes several things we know about teens right now. The onset of puberty continues to drop to an earlier age, with many kids starting sexual maturity while still in elementary school. This occurs at the same time that young people are being absolutely deluged with different types of digital information and experiencing a new awareness of social structures around them. However, that doesn’t mean that the “brake-system” in the brains (the prefrontal cortex) is keeping up with these other changes. Some teens feel trapped inside their bodies as they wait for their brains to mature. One mental health professional interviewed reminded parents that talking to teens early about suicidal ideation, self-harm, and other issues isn’t going to introduce or suggest these issues in a way that causes them to happen, but could in fact be a powerful preventative measure.  

Slang of the Week  

Villain Arc: Used by people, especially girls, who are tired of pretending to be “good” and have decided that the events in their life or the world have launched them into a stylized and aesthetic period of “evil”. (Ex: “My best friend’s boyfriend cheated on her, so she bought a ton of tight dresses and started doing really heavy eyeliner. I guess this is her villain arc.”)

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