Published on April 6 2007

Continuing on the education schtick, a teacher friend, knowing the name of the University (APU/AMU) where I'm chasing the degree and thinking that somehow my association with a "military college" means I want to join up, emailed me this story. Even though I doubt the military is desperate enough for a 46 year old bag who never *could* do a decent push-up, it's good to see there are teachers who can instill a lesson that might really last.
In September of 2005, a social studies schoolteacher from Arkansas did something not to be forgotten. On the first day of school, with permission of the school superintendent, the principal, and the building supervisor, she took all of the desks out of the classroom. The kids came into first period, they walked in; there were no desks. They obviously looked around and said, "Where's our desks?" The teacher said, "You can't have a desk until you tell me how you earn them." They thought, "Well, maybe it's our grades." "No," she said. "Maybe it's our behavior." And she told them, "No, it's not even your behavior." And so they came and went in the first period, still no desks in the classroom. Second period, same thing. Third period. By early afternoon television news crews had gathered in the class to find out about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of the classroom. The last period of the day, the instructor gathered her class. They were at this time sitting on the floor around the sides of the room. She said, "Throughout the day no one has really understood how you earn the desks that sit in this classroom ordinarily. Now I'm going to tell you." She went over to the door of her classroom and opened it, and as she did 27 U.S. veterans, wearing their uniforms, walked into that classroom, each one carrying a school desk. And they placed those school desks in rows, and then they stood along the wall. By the time they had finished placing the desks, those kids for the first time I think perhaps in their lives understood how they earned those desks. Their teacher said, "You don't have to earn those desks. These guys did it for you. They put them out there for you, but it's up to you to sit here responsibly, to learn, to be good students and good citizens, because they paid a price for you to have that desk, and don't ever forget it."
Now that you've read the story, and are sitting there, as I did, in disbelief that such a thing could happen, go here to get "the rest of the story". Just don't call me Paul Harvey while you're doing it.

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Published on April 5 2007

As an update to this post, one of my myriad readers sent me this little story:
Fifty Years of Math 1957 - 2007 Last week I purchased a burger at Burger King for $1.58. The counter girl took my $2 and I pulled 8 cents from my pocket and gave it to her. She stood there, holding the nickel and 3 pennies, while looking at the screen on her register. I sensed her discomfort and tried to tell her to just give me two quarters, but she hailed the manager for help. While he tried to explain the transaction to her, she stood there and cried. Why do I tell you this? Because of the evolution in teaching math since the 1950s: 1. Teaching Math In 1950s A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price. What is his profit? 2. Teaching Math In 1960s A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100 His cost of production is 4/5 of the price, or $80. What is his profit? 3. Teaching Math In 1970s A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80. Did he make a profit? 4. Teaching Math In 1980s A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80 and his profit is $20. Your assignment: Underline the number 20. 5. Teaching Math In 1990s A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. He does this so he can make a profit of $20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class participation after answering the question: How did the birds and squirrels feel as the logger cut down their homes? (There are no wrong answers. ) 6. Teaching Math In 2007 Un hachero vende una carretada de madera para $100. El costo de la producciones es $80. Cuanto dinero ha hecho?
I can 'fess up. I learned math in the 1960's and 1970's. And if you ever got a good look at my checkbook, you would be able to tell.

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Published on April 3 2007

Yuck. The prediction is still for white stuff up to 8". Double yuck. I already put my shovel away--knew I shouldn't have done that. And continuing in my "paring down" life mode, I am now officially a complete wireless warrior. Yep, the monopolistic local phone company who shall remain nameless (begins with a "V" and ends with an "n", lol) ticked me off more than their usual ticking. So I dropped them. Lol. When the service is lousy, and the *customer* service is even worse.... and I have other options..... well, not much more to say, is there? Now I just have to notify the 85,000 people who have the landline number that I now am a full-time cellgal. Or wait. Maybe I just won't bother, lol. I feel like I'm clipping the umbilical cord!!

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Published on April 2 2007

Isn't there some old saying about "April showers"? Or is this just a really belated April Fool's Day joke? I would NOT put it past the National Weather Service to be having one on us, but I will definitely have the trusty camera out to record the lovely weather.
Winter Storm Warning
URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GREEN BAY WI 354 PM CDT MON APR 2 2007 ...WINTER WILL RETURN TO NORTHERN AND CENTRAL WISCONSIN... AFTER SEVERAL WEEKS OF MILD WEATHER...WINTER WILL RETURN TO NORTHERN AND CENTRAL WISCONSIN AND REMAIN THROUGH THE END OF THE WEEK. HEAVY SNOW IS LIKELY IN NORTH CENTRAL WISCONSIN WITH LESSER AMOUNTS TO THE SOUTH. STRONG NORTH WINDS WILL CREATE BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW TUESDAY NIGHT AND WEDNESDAY. THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN GREEN BAY HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WARNING...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM TUESDAY TO 7 AM CDT WEDNESDAY. SNOW WILL ARRIVE TUESDAY AND BECOME HEAVY AT TIMES TUESDAY AFTERNOON AND TUESDAY NIGHT. 4 TO 8 INCHES ARE LIKELY BY WEDNESDAY MORNING. STRONG NORTH WINDS WILL ALSO CREATE BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. A WINTER STORM WARNING MEANS SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW ARE EXPECTED OR OCCURRING. STRONG WINDS ARE ALSO POSSIBLE. THIS WILL MAKE TRAVEL VERY HAZARDOUS OR IMPOSSIBLE.

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Published on April 2 2007

Doohan's ashes to be blasted into space - Yahoo! News
LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The ashes of James Doohan, who played chief engineer Montgomery "Scotty" Scott on the original "Star Trek" TV series, have been loaded into a rocket that is set to launch in New Mexico later this month. The remains of Doohan, Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper and some 200 others were loaded into the rocket Friday by Charles Chafer, chief executive of Celestis, a Texas company that contracts with rocket firms to send cremated remains into space.

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Published on April 2 2007

"Spackle"
spackle.JPG

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Published on April 1 2007

Thompson Declares Candidacy, Joining G.O.P. Field - New York Times
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson on Sunday joined the crowded field of Republicans running for the White House in 2008 and proclaimed himself the ''reliable conservative'' in the race. ''Things are starting to coalesce and I feel very, very optimistic about my future,'' Thompson said Sunday, despite his single-digit polling.''I am the reliable conservative. My record shows that. All that people have to do is look at my record, and I am one individual that they can count on,'' Thompson said.

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