Wednesday, May 03, 2006

The Carnival Of Education: Week 65

Welcome to another installment of the Carnival Of Education! Here you can find a selection of entries that have been submitted from sites all around the EduSphere. All entries were submitted by the writers unless labeled otherwise and are grouped into several categories.

If you are interested in guest hosting an edition of The Carnival Of Education, please let us know via this email address: edwonk [at] gmail [dot] com.

Thanks to everyone who helped spread the word about last week's midway. Links are much appreciated, trackbacks are always and forever adored.

Special announcement: Next week's carnival midway will be guest-hosted over at HUNBlog, which is HUNSTEM's science education blog. Please send contributions to: hogeb [at] uhd [dot] edu. They should be received no later than 4:00 PM (Central) Tuesday, May 9th. Please note the time change. Include the title of your post, and its URL, if possible. Barring unforeseen circumstances, the midway of should open over at HUNBlog next Wednesday morning.

Visit last week's Carnival here. See the archives (Which I'll update soon.)
there. For our latest posts, please take a look at our home page.

Let the free exchange of thoughts and ideas begin...

Education Policy:

I've heard it said that Social Security is the "
third rail" of American Politics, but I never would have thought that parents could be thought of as public education's third rail. I now think that the DeHavilland Blog may be on to something.

The title of this post by a
TFA teacher in Chicago says it all: Does Math and Science Need to be Fun?

Was there ever a time when the public trusted teachers to do their jobs effectively? Next week's midway host HUNBlog offers
some thoughtful views on the reasons why the relationship between the public and teachers has changed.

At D-Ed Reckoning, KDeRosa
unpacks a series of articles published in New York Magazine about the ongoing struggle between supporters of two major methods of reading instruction: phonics and balanced literacy.

Friends of Dave asks a question that
will have you thinking: Is there any amount of public education spending that would be enough? And is there anybody who'll go on the record with an actual amount per pupil? Agree or disagree. Exchange those thoughts and ideas!

Now I really like this idea. AFT's NCLBlog is
giving us the skinny on an open "Town Hall" type of meeting with teachers concerning the impact of the federal No Child Left Behind Act on those of us who serve students in the classroom.

It's embarrassing how little most American young people know about Geography. But Ms. Cornelius isn't just telling us about the problem, she's going to be
part of the solution.

Editor's Choice: Don't miss the week-long EduDebate
that's in progress over at Edspresso. The topic is universal preschool, with Joanne Jacobs and Susanna Cooper each presenting their respective positions.

Editor's Choice: Mike Antonucci's Intercepts reports on the difficulties that the teachers unions have had in
organizing charter schools in Ohio. (An 0 and 300 record is not encouraging, but the court battles have only just started.)

Teacher Education:

Those Who Can't Teach Wish They Could
links to and comments on a very interesting Detroit News article about the sorry state of teacher education. Here's a taste:
Until recently, Michigan didn't report the number of prospective teachers from each university who flunked certification exams, and it ignored a federal requirement to identify low-performing teacher colleges.

Michael Flanagan, the state superintendent of public instruction, now plans by June to have a way to rate low-performing colleges and is developing a process to more thoroughly evaluate how well they prepare new teachers. State officials say the plans ultimately could mean taking away universities' authority to certify teachers if, for example, they have too many graduates teaching in failing schools and too few passing certification exams.
Jenny D. has some well-reasoned commentary about a recent column by Nicholas Kristoff that appeared in last Sunday's New York Times. After reading Jenny's post, I wish that I could put Kristoff in front of 35 kids for a few days just to see if he might change his opinion that "Anybody Can Teach," to Something Else. Consider following some of the links that Jenny provides.

From The Classroom:

We always enjoy reading Mamacita's place and recommend it as a daily read. While keeping an eye on her community college students as they took their final exam, Mamacita engaged in a little free-writing that is
well worth your time.

Substitute teacher Mr. Lawrence had a lesson plan this week
that's left me wondering who the regular teacher had to bribe in order to get the job.

Special education teacher Mrs. Ris offers us
some food for thought: When should a special needs student be expelled?

Cell phones going off in class aren't just a problem in American schools, but are
a source of concern for Israeli teachers as well. It seems as though students will be students no matter which continent they learn on!

See how one high school teacher's class went from wrapping-up a study of Eric Maria Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front to an
in-depth bilingual classroom discussion about "The Day Without an Immigrant." (The twists and turns of classroom dynamics never stop surprising me!)

Inside The Teaching Life:

Third grade teacher Janet over at The Art of Getting By
takes a wistful look back at the days when teachers didn't have overcome negative speaking and writing habits that the media is now pounding teaching our kids.

Darren of Right on the Left Coast resigned from the teachers union some time ago. And yet he's still getting C.T.A.'s California Educator (formerly California Teacher) each month. Darren
is reporting that in a recent issue, the Educator insinuated that many teachers are unknowingly biased against minority students and that "awareness" could help close the achievement gap.

NY Educator has a clock in his classroom that doesn't work properly. The classroom next door has an identical clock that does work. And that unlocked classroom is vacant for one period. How would you solve
this moral dilemma?

Here's something that's of interest to just about all teachers and aspiring teachers:
some up-to-date salary statistics. Beware of that final thought at the end of the post!

Can you think of one or more teachers at your local school who, for whatever reason, dress inappropriately? I thought that this was primarily a concern here in the United States, but I can see that its
an international controversy as well.

Teaching And Learning:

Do you have a teenager in your life who is just eager to get him or herself a part-time job? And are you thinking about going along with it? Before you do, you might
consider reading this entry by education reporter Scott Elliott's Get on the Bus.

The educators in the Minnesota high school where math teacher "IB" works
are wrestling with next year's ninth-grade math curriculum. Heh. What they are going through almost makes me thankful that 100% of those types of decisions are made for us here our California junior high school.

And now something for us history teachers and those who are interested in American history. The Grrlscientist
puts us onto a brand new book that discusses the untold history of the 1930s Dust Bowl.

As a history teacher, the idea of a school that offers a classical education firmly rooted in the Greek and Latin Masters is appealing to me. But you can imagine my surprise when I read this entry over at Here in the Bonny Glenn about a school that offers an education in the classics but with a three-day school week!

Here's a couple of ideas
for using food... to teach math and science.

Educational Governance and Leadership:

What do principals look for when it comes to evaluating good teachers? The Median Sib
unpacks a recent article by Instructor Magazine's Pamela Wheaton Shorr and separates theory from application.

Alexander Russo's This Week in Education has
some final thoughts on the departure of Boston superintendent Tom Payzant. Be sure to follow Russo's link for additional information on Payzant's tenure.


Trivium Pursuit has assembled
a pretty good short list of reference books that homeschoolers should consider having in their learning library. (I especially like their inclusion of Black's Law Dictionary. One just never knows...)

The 18th edition of The Carnival of Homeschooling is open for your enjoyment over at The Thinking Mother.

Of Interest to Parents and Students:

Think Lab lets us in on a fascinating discussion that resulted from this note left by a parent on another site:
From a parent: do me a favor and teach my kids grammar and leave the caring and communicating and impact to me. There’s burnout in every career, and you must do what it takes to get through the toughest days, but if all you’re bringing to my child’s classroom is passion and concern, then you’ve failed them in the long run.
A number of folks responded to the parent's thought and you might too after reading this post.

Did you know that this is TV Turn-Off Week? I hadn't even heard of it until now. While we think that turning off the tube may not be such a bad idea in theory if not in practice, Multiple Mentality
is telling us that maybe TVTOW needs to be canceled by the programming director.

Higher Education:

Robert T. of Casting Out Nines was looking over his local paper's "sort of blog" when he came across a comment by a college professor that makes one wonder if more than a few professors might be
in need of a sabbatical.

The Prof over at Right Wing Nation
has put together a nifty "how to" guide for those who need to overhaul a course that is out-of-date or in bad need of repair. I think that this might even have applications at the K-12 level...

Charges of sexual harassment continue to plague our college campuses. Rhymes With Right has
the low-down on an incident that's being under-reported in the MSM.


What a wonderful concept. Technology providers bringing their services to needy schools under a program called
E-Rate. But as is the case with so many well-intended programs, Education Matters is telling us that the reality is often waste, fraud, and abuse.


Did you know that it's possible to
have a controversy over the spelling of "checkup?" It's about to drive MathandText insane! (Who would have imagined this unorthodox use for cartoon starfish?)

The Secret Lives of Educators:

North Carolina science teacher Waterfall lives in the western mountains of her state, not too far from our summer place in Tamassee, South Carolina. She's been having some fun teaching her students about predators, prey, and graphing, but
is now planning to get out do a little walking around in the woods. (Consider following the nifty links she provides.)

Inside the EduBlogs:

Editor's Choice: Those looking for an interesting new voice in the EduSphere might consider checking out
Change Agency. I especially enjoyed this post that addressed the topic of Meetings That Seem To Have No Useful Purpose. Just about every public school teacher has experienced plenty of those...

And finally: As always, this journey around the EduSphere has been both enjoyable, informative, and even relaxing. It's good to read so many different political and educational viewpoints. Thanks to all the contributors whose submissions make the midway's continuing success possible, the folks who help spread the word, and the readers who continue to make it rewarding.

This midway is registered at TTLB's carnival roundup. See our latest posts here, and the (soon to be) complete Carnival archives over there.