MSM 579: The Nintendo Effect – Brutally Honest!


Shawn and Troy talk about break, books, student perspectives of a trip, and more. Dave gets salty with kids participating. 


Yesterday I changed a lightbulb. Then I crossed the street and walked into a bar.

  • I’m starting to think my whole life is a joke.

When my wife said that quilts are better than duvets, I told her…

  • …to be careful making blanket statements like that!

Why is everyone so exhausted on April 1st?

  • They just finished a 31 day March

If Wile E. Coyote has enough money to buy all that stuff from ACME, why doesn’t he just buy himself dinner?

It’s nice to live in a small town, because if you don’t know what you are doing, someone else does.

I remember how we used to roll around in tires in my neighborhood.

Good years …

What is actually more useful when broken? 

  • An egg

The more you take, the more you leave behind. What are they? 

  • Footprints

Does anyone at Grey Poupon, Gulden’s, French’s etc. actually CUT the mustard?


Officials have said that one of the 4 main anchor moorings that keep Mackinac Island in place was severed sometime late last fall. The moorings, which were installed around 1910, are tethered to bedrock and are in place to keep the Island from further shifting on a northern trajectory. The faulty cable was from the mooring near British Landing on the Island’s northwest side.

It’s unclear how the untethered cable on the beach (see photo) went undetected for so long, however other folks had noticed a slight change in navigation nuances. Chris Shepler, Manager of Shepler Ferry said that several of his Ferry Captains indicated that they thought the west break-wall appeared to be slightly closer to the Round Island Light House. Syd Hawkins, Captain for Star Line Mackinac Island Ferry said, “All fall, when utilizing GPS, we kept coming in 2 to 3 feet off course at the dock, I figured the GPS needed a reset or re-calibration. I never would have thought the Island could shift.” Jason St. Onge, Proprietor of the Cannonball Oasis at British Landing which is very near the break said, “Never noticed a thing, and if there were any changes, it certainly didn’t affect the perfect cylindrical swirl on the soft serve ice cream cones!”

It is unclear at this time when the cable will be re-attached to the mooring and the Island reset to its plotted position, but folks close to the issue indicated it will probably happen before Memorial Day Weekend. In the odd event that a second of the four moorings breaks, a tugboat style ship will be brought in for stabilization efforts. Some quick research indicated that there hasn’t been a separation of the cables from a mooring in almost 61 years. The Army Corp of Engineers, which is responsible for the cables and moorings, inspects them for wear and fray every two years.

Middle School Science Minute  

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

Become a Salt Watcher

I was recently reading the March/April 2023 issue of “Science Scope” a publication of the National Science Teaching Association.  

In this issue, I read the “Citizen Science” column, written by Jill Nugent.  She wrote an article entitled, “Become a Salt Watcher in Your Community.”  

When students think of salt, they typically think of table salt, which is sodium chloride.  Road salt, also known as rock salt, is often sodium chloride or magnesium chloride.  The goal of the Izaak Walton League of America Salt Watch project is to monitor chloride levels in local streams and creeks.  For more information, please visit:

Reports from the Front Lines

  • Maine Education Funding Correction – Math ErrorSpreadsheet
  • Principal Fill In
  • Shawn’s “Break”
    • Biography of Robert E. Lee
    • Troy’s Recommendation: Robert E. Lee and Me: A Southerner’s Reckoning with the Myth of the Lost Cause – by Ty Seidule
    • The Winner’s – Fredrik Backman 

The Social Web

Darren E. Draper  @ddraper

“Let him serve as a reminder… that even the best teachers can’t teach if students aren’t prepared to learn. And that no one — not children, not teachers, not society — is well served when parents consider discipline a relic of the past.”  

Denise Ball  @DeniseBall_EDU

Thank you for sharing the classroom rotation station ideas and resources for elementary, middle and high school classrooms.  

    Want to get started with station rotation or level up your stations? Look no further! Our post includes  Videos Examples Ideas a FREE collection of station rotation task cards you can use with your class! #Ditchbook  

Jonny Hemphill  @worcesterjonny

If you’d like a copy of these ‘get them thinking’ medicine cards, please click on the link. There are 60 cards with a brief description on the back of who or what is on the front. The cards cover many aspects of the history of medicine


Here is a quick retrieval task I’ve been working on about the cause of disease across the historical periods. I’ve used a traffic light system to illustrate when an idea starts, if it continues into later periods and when it is no longer used.  #historyteacher  

Merriam-Webster  @MerriamWebster

The #WordOfTheDay is ‘shenanigans.’ Be careful out there today.

Senator Dayna Polehanki  @SenPolehanki

“[Michigan’s teacher] evaluation system contains too many categories, with too much reliance on M-STEP, an exam that was never built for teacher performance metrics in the first place.” —


Amy W Pento  @amypento

I stumbled upon The Noun Project, a collection of free icons and stock photos that are simple and clear. It’s a great resource to reduce visual clutter on teaching materials and save teacher time.

Bob Harrison @bharrisonEDU

We can learn about learning from the way kids play video games: The Nintendo Effect.

Susie Dent  @susie_dent

Etymology of the day: the ‘desert’ in ‘just deserts’ (not ‘just desserts’) is an old past tense of the French ‘deservir’, to ‘deserve’. Someone’s just deserts are their ‘comeuppance’, which rests on the idea of ‘coming up’ before a judge.

Math Lady Hazel   @mathladyhazel

The simplest way to visualize the set of numbers. Utterly useful diagram! []

Duuk Baten

Colleague Vivian did a short (technical) analysis of ‘ChatGPT’ detection tools.

It seems to confirm my intuition, these tools don’t really work reliably…   (See further down in the show notes.)  


AI-generated text detectors: Do they work?

Ever since the release of ChatGPT, people have been amazed and have been using it to help them with all sorts of tasks, such as content creation. However, the model has faced criticism: some are raising concerns about plagiarism for example. AI-generated content detectors claim to distinguish between text that was written by a human and text that was written by an AI. How well do these tools really work?

Real World Math

These Concept lessons are designed to target specific math concepts, often in real world settings and situations.  You’ll solve proportions, estimate area, and calculate volume in unique locations around the world. 

Say Yes To Life

Eleven months after he was liberated from the Nazi concentration camps, Viktor E. Frankl held a series of public lectures in Vienna. The psychiatrist, who would soon become world famous, explained his central thoughts on meaning, resilience, and the importance of embracing life even in the face of great adversity.


Web Spotlight:  

How a 100-Year-Old Animated Film Is Restored!

Preserving our local Taranaki Stories

The Taranaki Media Archive started life as the Audio History Trust back in 2008. A group of like-minded people got together with the aim to preserve our Taranaki stories and make them into enjoyable audio documentaries in CD form that would be freely available for people to access.

The combined libraries of the South Taranaki District Council agreed to put them on their shelves and since then they have all been borrowed and enjoyed frequently.

The founding trust board members were Selwyn Metcalfe, Lyn Walker, Marlene Stevenson, and Hamish Guthrie.

Since the Audio Trust’s inception over 45 audio documentaries have been made – quite a few with people who have now passed on, which emphasises the importance of gathering these stories before the are lost forever.

In 2008 the most accessible format was a CD. Time and technology has moved on, and these days many people probably don’t have a viable CD player to access our collection. The trust was then faced with the predicament “what to do with the collection?”

It was decided to reform the Trust and build a website to house the sound collection, but to also extend the parameters of the trust to include our history on film/video as well. With that in mind the trust decided that a change of name would better reflect its mission … and the Taranaki Media Archive was born.

Random Thoughts . . .  

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