The 101st Edition of the Carnival of Education!
Hello, education fans! It's my pleasure to host the 101st edition of the Carnival of Education here at I Thought at Think, a great power which also carries with it a great responsibility: what would a good theme be? I badly wanted to go with 101 Dalmations (for the 101st carnival, natch!), but beyond a rather forced comparison between Cruella De Vil and NCLB I couldn't make it work. That being how it is I grouped the entries this month more or less by theme and put a cute dalmation puppy at the top of the screen--on with the show!
From the Classroom
EdWonk, the founder and patron saint of the Carnival of Education, leads us off with this pressing question: is wetting your pants an arrestable offense?
Over in Mrs. Bluebird's classroom she hears the happy click of the AVID binders opening as she teaches her students the joy of cleaning house.
NYC Educator reminds me of why I'm not a high school teacher as one of his kids spends her time Getting Ready for the Weekend. It doesn't sound like she has sleeping on her mind. Also from the Big Apple, Rocking the School System in NYC had an enlightening discussion with her students about why the Regent's Exam is considered hard for some schools, but easy for others.
In a similar vein, Sage over at Persephone's Box is counting down the days 'til the semester's end, when she can bid a fond farewell to the kid who staples his pants to his legs for fun.
From the ridiculous to the profane, HorseSense and NonSense is all over the story of a teacher who was driven from the profession by unforgivable student bullying. The kicker is the judge in her case, who apparently thinks that it's OK to abuse the teacher because that's what kids do. In a related story Ms. Teacher gives her approval for holding kids accountable for their actions, even if that means they can't use the public library or the school grounds after hours. Joanne Jacobs has more context about the library story here.
Ms. Cornelius puts voice to what many of us have wondered: Is a teacher's work ever done? See the also intriguing Part I for the genesis of the idea, and 3σ → for a funny and pointed post on the joys (?) of parent involvement.
At Florida Citizens for Science they're thinking about one of the pressing questions in education today: what should we do to help middle schoolers succeed? They're also looking at the new majors initiative wherein Florida freshmen will choose a cluster to follow during their high school career.
Mister Teacher gets a surprise visit from a former student in The Pop-In. It's neat when they come back. Meanwhile, Mr. Meyer shares his strategy for getting papers graded at the coffee shop.
Muse at Me-Ander is getting her seniors ready for the "Bagrut" exams. Tests--something teenagers world-wide can complain about together.
Practical Theory starts the policy parade off with his look at School 2.0, a thoughtful post at looking beyond the computers to how the actual pedagogy itself needs to change.
One of the neat things I'm finding about doing the Carnival is that you find a variety of blogs that you wouldn't have otherwise, with this post from Dirty Mechanism being a prime example. They go against the conventional wisdom in praising the industrial model for education, but the reasoning is excellent.
Matt Johnston over at Going to the Mat is also thinking about how to improve schools, this time the DC Catholic Schools and how their accomplishments relate to NCLB. Darren of Right on the Left Coast casts a similar eye at a new report on the California School System (the unions won't be happy!), while Michelle over at Texas Ed takes to task yet another report calling for less teacher tenure and more administrative power.
At The DeHavilland Blog they thinking about accountability with a headline that jumps off the screen at you:Accountable....Like Ken Lay?
Also on the report ripping front, Polski's View From Here has his way with the Skills Commission report while asking some hard but crucial questions about student motivation. An exerpt:
Lets look at China and India. Both have huge populations. AFAIK, people in these countries lack the sense of entitlement found in too many people in the US. These people know that a life of manual labor in their medieval agricultural systems or long hours in a factory for little pay and living in a crowded, filthy hovel are among the choices for the uneducated. Therefore, when presented with the opportunity, many families in China and India jump at the chance for their children to attend school. Motivation and purpose; a better education means a better life. Period.
The good folks over at This Week in Education are also talking about motivation as it relates to the school that Oprah is building in South Africa. There's also an excellent follow-up post linking to a column by Clarence Page that addresses the same theme.
EdSpresso argues that NCLB has jumped the shark, along with a cool picture of the Fonz and some thoughts from a Mike Petrilli article. As a regular listener of the Education Gadfly Podcast, I think that linking the two is wholly appropriate.
Right Wing Prof pops up at Kitchen Table Math talking about his experience tutoring in math. If you care about the math wars or have an opinion about math curriculum, this is a critical post.
Finally, Mr. Lawrence of Get Lost, Mr. Chips finds a real-world example of how grades have gone down over the years. I guess there is a good reason to keep all those grading books after all....
Great Thinkers and Their Thoughts
Aquiram of Teaching in the 21st Century asks an important question about the place of professionalism in the blogosphere, if any, while Dan over at A History Teacher gives a fascinating account on how he teachers the Just War Theory in his classroom.
At Life Without School Marjorie talks about an experience at her local library and asks an important question: how much say should parents have in the education of their children?
Phil at Phil For Humanity scratches that math itch with this question: what does infinity divided by infinity equal? If you think it's 1, Phil says you're wrong! He's also got some things to say about selecting a college major.
In a pair of grading-related posts, Rightwing Prof talks about weighted vs. relative GPAs while the good folks over at The Psychology of Education look into the trend of sending home Body Mass Index report cards.
At Sharpbrains they talk about ways to keep your mental accuity, and Getting Green has advice on how to keep more money in your wallet. Important if you're on a defined contribution retirement plan, like your unfortunate carnival host.
I'm a big fan of What It's Like on the Inside, a beautifully written blog with some great thinking going on. I'm betting you'll be a fan, too, after reading her post The Clockwork Classroom.
At The Campus Grotto they've got some advice for how to survive your first year of college. As a personal aside: watch what you eat, because the Freshman 15 can be a terrible reality if you let it.
Finally, Mamacita at Scheiss Weekly absolutely unloads on the things that annoy her in a post she called "A Litany of Whines."
At Learn Chinese Today they have the 8 common mistakes made when trying to learn Chinese.
Online University Lowdown discusses a new online initiative being spearheaded by MIT that can bring some of the worlds great courses right to you!
Let's Talk Babies! is looking at the problem of overscheduled kids. The picture at the top of the post is guaranteed to make you smile.
The new Hillary Swank teacher flick is on the mind of the Colossus of Rhodey as he thinks fondly of some of his favorite movies about the profession.
The Median Sibling looks back at her Favorite 13 posts from 2006. It's like a mini Carnival!
The age-old Nigerian money scam is the topic over at Evolution Blog. That was one of the first emails I got when I opened my first internet account in 1994.
Our final post this carnival is a test of the power of the internet. Elementary History Teacher is looking for a painting, which was used for a White House Christmas card years ago but has now gone missing. Read her great post for the full story, then get up in your attic and start looking!
Thank you for visiting this week's carnival! Next week's midway will be hosted by my good union buddy Dr. Homeslice. Submissions can be directly emailed to him at drhomeslice [at] hotmail [dot] com by 9:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday, January 16th. There's also always the handy submission form! You can also spend some time browsing the past editions of the Carnival at the archives.
Update: This post was edited 8:00 a.m. PST 1-11-06 to add the posts from This Week in Education, and to make Polski a dude. Sorry about the pronoun confusion, Brother Teacher!