Monday, June 5, 2023

Summer for Teachers

Summer is approaching and now is the time to think about what you plan to do. Sometimes I’m so overwhelmed by the possibilities that I feel paralyzed from taking any action. I thought it would help to decide if I listed the possibilities.

Here are some things teachers can do over the summer:

Relax and recharge:
  • Go on vacation.
  • Spend time with family and friends.
  • Read.
  • Go for walks in nature.
  • Take a yoga class.
  • Get a massage.
Plan for the upcoming school year:
  • Create lesson plans.
  • Order supplies.
  • Get organized.
  • Meet with your colleagues to discuss curriculum and lesson plans.
  • Attend professional development workshops.

Take professional development courses:
  • There are many online and in-person professional development courses available.
  • Some courses are free, while others require a fee.
  • Choose courses that are relevant to your teaching interests and needs.

Volunteer:
  • Many organizations need volunteers.
  • You could volunteer at a local school, library, or community center.
  • You could also volunteer to tutor students or mentor young people.
Travel:
  • There are many great places to travel.
  • Choose a destination that interests you and that you think you'll enjoy.
  • Do some research to find the best deals on flights and accommodations.
Learn a new skill:
  • There are many online and in-person classes available.
  • Some classes are free, while others require a fee.
  • Choose a skill that you're interested in learning and that you think will be useful.
Start a side hustle:
  • There are many different side hustles that you could start.
  • Some popular side hustles include tutoring, selling handmade goods, and dog walking.
  • Do some research to find a side hustle that you're interested in and that you think you'll be good at.
Do nothing:
  • Sometimes the best thing to do is simply nothing.
  • Take some time to relax and enjoy the summer.
  • Read a book.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Spend time with family and friends.
No matter what you choose to do over the summer, make sure you take some time for yourself to relax and recharge. After a long school year, you deserve it!

Friday, June 2, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 6/2/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

Teach Rock - “TeachRock improves students' lives by bringing the sound, stories, and science of music to all classrooms.From The Beatles to BeyoncĂ©, from kindergarten to AP History, in the classroom or remotely, TeachRock offers meaningful lesson plans all at no cost to teachers, students, and families, inspiring deeper learning and understanding through the power of music.” (L:T; SA:A)

The psychology behind irrational decisions - “Often people make decisions that are not “rational” from a purely economical point of view — meaning that they don’t necessarily lead to the best result. Why is that? Are we just bad at dealing with numbers and odds? Or is there a psychological mechanism behind it? Sara Garofalo explains heuristics, problem-solving approaches based on previous experience and intuition rather than analysis.” (L:H; SA:S)

Squeak Grows a Garden - “​​Squeaks and Mister Brown really want to plant a garden this spring, but they don't know where to start! Lucky for them, their friend Juniper the Earthworm is a gardening expert! Join in as they learn the when and where to plant their garden so they can enjoy home-grown veggies all summer. Plus, they'll watch seeds sprout into baby plants, and even learn how to grow plants without soil!” (L:E; SA:S)

Indoor Farm - “Family turns small-town Sask. school into indoor farm ​— and runs a drive-thru for veggies” (L:T; SA:A)

Mental Health Chart - “Teacher’s Mental Health Chart for Students Inspires Educators Across the Globe to Follow Suit” (L:T; SA:A)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, June 1, 2023

2023 Goals Review for May

May was a hectic month! Don had hand surgery and a tooth pulled which wasn’t much fun for him. I went to the doctor for a checkup and had lab work done. I found out my cholesterol and triglycerides were high. We bought a zero-turn riding lawn mower which was interesting. It takes Don about 45 minutes to mow the yard when it used to take him 3 days (a little each day). 

1. Learn something new. - I learned Tunisian crochet to make a couple of dishcloths. I’m still practicing my watercolor painting and my ukulele.

2. Knit at least 1 sweater - I finished with my sweater. (Collins Tee)

3. Yarn - more out than in (use more yardage than I buy) – I bought 3 skeins of sock yarn. I finished knitting Sheldon the Seahorse, 3 thank-you gnomes, and a pair of socks. 

●  Yarn used - 5096 yds.

●  -Yarn bought - 1324

3. Complete a shawl - I finished my Shawlography shawl

4. Try 4 new recipes. - I didn’t try anything new in May

5. Stretch regularly (at least 20 days out of the month) - We are walking and exercising regularly 

6. Create at least 2 scrapbook pages each month. - Made 10 pages for May (Total - 50)

7. Participate in the Photo a Day challenge – Completed through May.

8. Read the Bible every day. - yes

9. Read 100 books - Read 14 in January, 2 in February, 6 in March, 5 in April. 4 in April (Total: 31)

10. Read 12 nonfiction books. – (total: 6).

-   Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today by Valerie Bertinelli

-   Prince William: The Man Who Will Be King by Penny Junor

-   I Still Believe: A Memoir by Jeremy Camp

-   Call the Midwife by Jennifer Worth

-  I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy

-  Nowhere for Very Long by Brianna Madia


What are your goals for this year? Please share.


Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Small Enough to Jail


I recently found the movie Abacus: Small Enough to Jail on Amazon Prime but it is also available on the PBS website (Click on the link). It is a  little-known story of the only U.S. bank prosecuted in relation to the 2008 financial crisis. I was amazed how the government targeted them and the racism was so evident. Knowing how I was brought up in the Chinese culture, it hurt me to watch what happened knowing how deeply it affected this family. I highly recommend that you watch this and see what happens. 

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

The Joy of Discovery

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In The Joy of Discovery, Rushton features a man who is learning new things.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“What makes what the man in the video experiences interesting? Can you bring that to your own learning?”

I loved this video because I love learning. Every year, I have the goal of learning something new. I try to model this with my students and I want them to know that you should keep learning all your life and not just in school. I want my students to see me go through the process of learning and how I struggle to understand and practice my new skills. Some things I continue to do and improve my skills but some things I learn that I don’t like. I compare this to tasting new foods; some you like and some you don’t. Some you still include in your diet and others you stay away from but you would never have known that if you hadn’t tried it.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Monday, May 29, 2023

Happy Memorial Day!


Today is Memorial Day in the United States. It is a federal holiday to honor and mourn those who died while serving in the US Armed Forces. It is observed on the last Monday of May every year.

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on this day. Many volunteers place American flags on the graves of military personnel in national cemeteries.

The first time this holiday was observed was on May 30, 1868, but it was called Decoration Day. It later became known as Memorial Day when Congress designated the last Monday in May as a federal holiday.

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day! Thank you to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to protect us.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 5/26/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

Visuwords - “A modern dictionary for a modern world. Visuwords™ represents Language visually.” (L:G; SA:A)

Georgia Public Broadcasting - “Georgia Public Broadcasting's education division is proud to provide FREE digital media & content for GA's educators & students.” (L:G; SA:A)

Can You Power A House With A Bicycle? - “After pedaling for hours, I discover there's a difference between the power you use and the power your body can generate.” (L:H; SA:S)

The Math Learning Center - “These free apps are based on the visual models featured in Bridges in Mathematics. Apps are available in multiple versions: a web app for all modern browsers, and downloadable versions for specific operating systems and devices (such as Apple iOS for iPad).”(L:T; SA:A)

C3Teachers - “The Inquiry Design Model (IDM) is a distinctive approach to creating curriculum and instructional materials that honors teachers’ knowledge and expertise, avoids overprescription, and focuses on the main elements of the instructional design process as envisioned in the Inquiry Arc of the College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Framework for State Social Studies Standards (2013). Unique to the IDM is the blueprint, a one-page representation of the questions, tasks, and sources that define a curricular inquiry.” (L:T; SA:A)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Heather Fong

Heather Fon was the chief of police in San Francisco. She was the first woman to lead the police department there and the first Asian American to lead a major metropolitan city police department. She is the second Asian American police chief in the San Francisco police department’s history.

Fong’s family was from Guangdong Province, China. She grew up in San Francisco and got a BA from the University of San Francisco and a MA from San Francisco State University. She joined the US Air Force ROTC and was also a police cadet. She graduated from the police academy in 1977.

In 1979, she was an instructor at the police academy, and in 1983, she was one of two female child abuse investigators. She was also a youth investigator in 1992. She moved up in ranks and was promoted to lieutenant in 1993, captain in 1994, commander in 1998, deputy chief in 2000, and assistant chief in 2003.

She became police chief in April 2004 and retired in 2009.

In November 2014, she served as the Department of Homeland Security Assistant Security for State and Local Law Enforcement but left at the end of the Obama administration




Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Converge Autism 2023 Takeaways

I like going to sessions at conferences where I get the most takeaways. I like to leave with things that I can do/use in the classroom. 

Here are a few sessions that I really enjoyed with the most takeaways for me and their presentations: 


Supporting Students with Autism in the General Education Setting presented by Heidi Carico, MA, NCSP



Early Intervention and Autism; Real Life Questions, Real Life Answers presented by Dr. James Ball, Ed.D, BCBA-D


7 Core Strategies for Effective Program presented by Dr. James Ball, Ed.D, BCBA-D



Tuesday, May 23, 2023

The Angles of Art

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In The Angles of Art, Rushton features Michael Murphy who creates Perceptual Art.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“Would you take the time to create something like this? Why or why not?

If you were making a piece of art in this style about a group or place that is important to you, what might you include in it to give an extra layer of meaning about how you see its importance?”

I found this very fascinating. Every other year, Boynton Beach, FL has a kinetic art exhibit and there were some pieces similar to these but on a much smaller level. They were fascinating to see in person! The results were amazing and it is hard to imagine all the hours that go into planning something like this. I think it would be fun to do a fruit display like this and include some fruit aromas.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.


Monday, May 22, 2023

Ben Silbermann

Born on July 14, 1982, Ben Silbermann is the co-founder of Pinterest. Pinterest helps people organize images, links, and websites into categories. People can keep their collections online.

Ben grew up in Iowa and worked for Google at one time. Even as a child, he collected things such as insects to stamps. His parents, Jane Wang and Neil Silbermann, were doctors and he went to college majoring in pre-med. But in his junior year, he changed his mind. He worked in Washington DC as a consultant and began reading technology blogs. When Silbermann worked at Google, he designed display ads. From his job at Google, he learned to think big and learned from those who created unique products.

When he left Google, he reconnected with a college friend and tried some new ideas. They created Pinterest and it was slow to succeed. It wasn’t an overnight success but eventually, it started to catch on. He sent it to 200 of his friends. Eventually, people started using it. Silbermann contacted the first 5000 users and even gave them his cell phone number.

In 2019, Pinterest held its IPO, worth 12 billion dollars. In 2022, Silbermann stepped down as CEO and became the Executive Chairman.


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Friday, May 19, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 5/19/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

#Color Our Collections - “This Learning Lab collection has been created to encourage learners of all ages to #ColorOurCollections and engage with our portraits! Each coloring page is followed by the portrait in our collection that the coloring page is based on. We invite you to compare and contrast your creation with our collections! What might you add to your portrait? What colors would you use? What choices did you make that were the same as the choices the original artist made? What choices did you make that were different?” (L:G; SA:FA)

Old Maps Online - “The easy to use gateway to historical maps in libraries around the world.” (L:G; SA:SS)

How Do Solar Panels Work?
- “The Earth intercepts a lot of solar power: 173,000 terawatts. That’s 10,000 times more power than the planet’s population uses. So is it possible that one day the world could be completely reliant on solar energy? Richard Komp examines how solar panels convert solar energy to electrical energy.” (L:H; SA:S)

Exclusion and Empire - “The annexation of both Hawaii and the Philippines in 1898 opened a new chapter in congressional history. Limited in their legislative tools as statutory representatives and stymied by racial prejudice, Resident Commissioners and Delegates worked to protect their islands’ economies and define their political status. Elsewhere across America, discriminatory policies at the federal and state level denied Asian immigrants access to citizenship and all but erased their political rights.” (L:H; SA: SS)

May Wakelet - “Resources for teachers to use with students. Curated by Terri Eichholz.” (L:T; SA:A)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Sheryl WuDunn

Sheryl WuDunn is a Pulitzer Prize winner for International Reporting.

Sheryl WuDunn was born on November 15, 1959. She was a third-generation Chinese American and grew up in New York City. She graduated with a BA in European History in 1981 from Cornell University. Then she worked for three years as an international loan officer for Bankers Trust Company. She got her MBA from Harvard Business School and MPA from Princeton. In 1988, she married reporter, Nicholas Kristof. She also holds honorary doctorates from the University of Pennsylvania and Middlebury College.

In 1989, she joined The New York Times as a correspondent in the Beijing bureau. She was one of the few people there who worked both the news and the business sides of the company. She was the first Asian American reporter for the Times. She is able to speak Chinese and some Japanese. She is a commenter and television and radio shows.

In 1990, WuDunn and her husband won the Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for their coverage of the 1989 Tiananmen Square Protests. They were the first married couple to win this prize for journalism. She was the first female Asian American reporter to win the Pulitzer. Since then, she was won numerous other awards.

With her husband, WuDunn has coauthored five best sellers.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Learning from an Elder

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Learning from an Elder, Rushton features a 96-year-old woman who sells vegetables at night. She has been doing this for thirty years.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“There are lessons that come from what she has to say, and things that you learn from watching the story. What do you learn about where she lives by watching this video?

Did the people who made the video that went viral do her a favor? Why or why not?”


What a wonderful example of a work ethic this woman shares. Her positive mental attitude as well as her good physical condition are amazing and students need to see more of this in life. The only thing that I thought was sad is when she stopped selling pies because the number of customers became overwhelming. I don’t believe we use the older generation enough in our classes. What a wonderful resource these people can be! They are full of experience and knowledge; we need to tap into this.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Converge Autism Summit 2023

For the next 2 days, I’m attending the Converge Autism Summit 2023 at the Greenville Convention Center in Greenville, SC. 

“The Converge Autism Conference is geared towards industry professionals but is also open to parents and caregivers from around the nation as a chance to meet and discuss educational, therapeutic, social, and psychological topics related to Autism Spectrum Disorder.” 


I have attended this for several years and I believe that I’ve learned a lot of valuable information there. This summit is great for professionals and families. There are breakout sessions for practitioners, educators, and families. 


I hope next week to share some of the information that I’ve learned from this conference. 


If you have never attended, please consider attending this in the future. 


Monday, May 15, 2023

Anna May Wong

Anna May Wong was born on January 3, 1905, and died on February 3, 1961. She was considered the first Chinese American to star in Hollywood. She also was the first Chinese American actress to be recognized internationally. She acted in silent film, sound film, television, radio, and on stage. In 1934, she was voted the world’s best-dressed woman by the Mayfair Mannequin Society of New York. During the 1920s and 1930s, she was seen as one of the top fashion icons.

In 1928, Wong went to Europe to star in plays and films because Hollywood used her only in stereotypical supporting roles. In 1935, MGM refused to consider her for the leading role in Pearl S. Buck’s The Good Earth. It may have been due to the Hays Code anti-miscegenation rules that required the wife of a white actor be played by a white actress. But the Code insisted that only the sexual relationship between white and black races was forbidden and didn’t pertain to other interracial marriages. She spent the next year traveling around China, visiting her family’s village, studying the culture, and filming her experience. In the 1930s, she played parts that showed Chinese and Chinese Americans in a more positive light. During WWII, she spent a lot of time and money helping the Chinese fight against Japan. Wong finally returned to television in the 1950s. Wong made history in 1951 with her US TV show The Gallery of Madame Liu-Tsong starring an Asian-American series lead. In 1961, she died of a heart attack.

What other Asian American actors have made an impact on the US culture?  Please share. 

Friday, May 12, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 5/12/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

The Math Learning Center - “The Math Learning Center (MLC) is providing resources for all students to use independently or with support from family members or educators” (L:G; SA:M)

Meet Landers Gaydosh: A 13-Year-Old World Championship Climber Who Scales Ice Walls - “Meet Landers Gaydosh: an ice climbing world champion who has competed across the globe by climbing up slippery ice walls with long-handled hammers with blades. In January 2022, at the Ice Climbing World Youth Championships in Switzerland, he scrambled all the way to the top of an 80-foot-tall ice wall — and bested others in his category by 20 seconds.” (L:E,M; SA:LA)

Spotify for Podcasters - “Powerful tools for beginners, pros, and everyone in between – all for free.” (L:G; SA:A)

Weather Lab - “Weather Lab is a tool to help visualize how North America’s weather is formed. This lab is designed to model the complex interactions between air masses and ocean currents, but like all models it represents probable outcomes. Each prediction you make is for possible outcomes during Spring.” (L:M,H; SA:S)

Baseball Hall of Fame - free lesson plans, “The materials available here can enrich your on-site field trip or virtual field trip experience with the Baseball Hall of Fame. You may also use these materials independently to help you teach a variety of subjects using baseball as a catalyst.” (L:M,H; SA:A)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Joyce Chen

In 2014, the USPS honored Joyce Chen for her accomplishments and influence by issuing a stamp with her image (U.S. #4924). The stamp was part of the Celebrity Chef Forever stamp series and was released on September 26, 2014, in Chicago. This series also included Julia Child, James Beard, Edna Lewis, and Felipe Rojas-Lombari. The Celebrity Chefs stamps (49 cents) had five designs, in a pressure-sensitive adhesive pane of 20 stamps. The digital illustrations show the five chefs resembling oil paintings. The selvage design represents a white china plate resting on a fine linen tablecloth.

Joyce Chen was a famous chef who popularized northern-style Chinese food in the United States. Before that, most Americans ate food that wasn’t authentic or originated in China.

Joyce Chen was born in Beijing on September 14, 1917, and died on August 23, 1994. In 1949, Joyce Chen and her family escaped China when the Communists took over.

In 1957, she made pumpkin cookies and Chinese egg rolls for a bake sale fundraiser at the Buckingham School in Cambridge and was surprised that her snacks sold out in an hour. In 1958, she opened the first Joyce Chen restaurant, beginning the all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet. She invented and held a patent for the flat bottom wok with a handle. Chen also created the first line of bottled Chinese stir-fry sauces for the United States in 1984

After she divorced her husband in 1966, she sold her original restaurant to her husband and legally changed her name to her maiden name, Joyce Liao. She continued to use Joyce Chen as her business name. She opened her second restaurant in 1967 even though she was a single mother raising three children who helped her with the restaurant. It was called The Joyce Chen Small Eating Place.

Her third restaurant, the Joyce Chen Restaurant, opened in 1969 and seated 500 people. This restaurant was closed in 1974 when the building was demolished to make new dorms for MIT.

Her fourth restaurant opened in 1973, also called the Joyce Chen Restaurant seated 263 people and operated for 25 years until it closed in 1998.

In 1985, she was diagnosed with dementia and died in 1994.

Class Activities: 
  • Bring in some different Chinese food dishes for the class to taste. 
  • Learn how to use chopsticks. 
  • Research what happened in 1949 that made many Chinese flee the country. 
  • Invite a Chinese chef to come talk to the class.   

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Asian American Identities: A National Story (with Mary Lui)


In honor of Asian/Pacific Islander Month, I thought you might enjoy this podcast episode.

Now and Then Podcast with Heather Cox Richardson and Joanne Freeman featuring special guest Mary Lui.

In the aftermath of two mass shootings involving AAPI populations, Mary Lui, a professor of History and American Studies at Yale, joins Heather and Joanne to discuss the influence of Asian Americans on the nation’s trajectory, from the origins of the “Old China Trade,” to the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, to the 1960s protest movements that fought for Asian American rights in the academy and beyond.

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Third Thumb Research

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Third Thumb Research, Rushton features a video that shares what researchers are learning about a possible third thumb and the impact it can make.

Rushton gives the following prompts to accompany this video:

“Start with what you could do with another thumb on your hand. What uses does the video show? What else might be possible?

Consider now that this is a video put together by a research team about their work. Have you ever used a video to tell a serious story? Why might you use a video instead of some other way of sharing what you know?”


I love when we ask students to think outside the box and look at new possibilities. I thought that something like this would be great for people who may have lost their other hand. It seemed like this extra thumb let people do things with one hand that normally needed two hands. It also seemed as if the brain was able to adapt to using the extra thumb rather quickly. I almost wish that I could give that a try!

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.


Monday, May 8, 2023

Scrapbook Pages from April 2023

Digital scrapbooking is a great activity to use in the classroom. It can be used to capture memories, share important information, or focus on a specific event. This would be a great alternate activity for book reports and even group projects. Here are some examples that I made in April. I use the website Gingerscraps for ideas and even free digital kits.













Friday, May 5, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 5/5/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

Conundrums - “This learning series with Activities introduces the challenging idea that not all problems have a clear right answer. Each episode is carefully designed to develop problem solving and critical thinking skills!” (L:E,M; SA:C)

Propello - “Propello makes it easier to give every student a first-class learning experience. Our K-12 teaching and learning platform combines high-quality, customizable curriculum with built-in scaffolding and supports to propel learning forward.” (L:T; SA:A)

Stickity - “Seamlessly integrate digital stickers into Google Slides and Google Docs.” (L:T; SA:A)

Focusable - “Life gets more distracting by the day, diminishing your ability to pay attention. Now AI is becoming part of your everyday life - offering up enormous new potential and also a new path of least resistance to your attention. Yet to flourish, we need to retain the ability to take on the resistance. To embrace challenges. To do the deep work. Investing in your ability to focus is the foundation to thrive.” (L:G; SA:A)

Bird migration, a perilous journey - a TED-ed lesson; “​​Nearly 200 species of songbirds migrate south for winter, some traveling up to 7,000 miles. No easy task, the annual journey is dangerous to birds due to landscape change -- so much so, that only half the birds that migrate south will return home for spring. Alyssa Klavans details why bird migration is so taxing and how we can assist our chirping friends.” (L:G; SA:S)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month


May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month. 

“The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America's history and are instrumental in its future success.”


Bravespace is a compilation of original songs, sounds, and meditations created by Asian American women and non-binary artists and musicians. Arriving amidst a period of collective trauma and heightened xenophobic violence, Bravespace offers listeners a refuge for contemplation, grief, and growth.”


Wednesday, May 3, 2023

April 2023 Photo A Day Project

I’m still enjoying my Photo a Day project on Flickr. I find it helpful to look at other people’s photos and see what I like about them, what makes them stand out to me, and the composition of the photo. I believe these will help me take better photos. 

Here are my photos from April:





Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Seeing Challenges Within

“The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts.”

In Seeing Challenges Within, Rushton features Butterfly IQ, an ultrasound device used in Nairobi, Kenya.

Rushton gives the following prompt to accompany this video:

“Looking at your list of challenges, are there advantages that are associated with the challenges? For example, might it be that living in a slum means being part of a close community that allows people to rely on each other?

Now think about the people you know where you live. What challenges do they face? Are some of the challenges the same?"


This video was very inspiring because it would encourage students to look within their own community and the challenges that exist. It would help students look beyond their own life challenges and more into the challenges a whole community would face. It would be interesting to have a brainstorming session to think about ways to overcome these challenges.

Please check out the video and think of other prompts you might come up with. Please share.

Monday, May 1, 2023

2023 Goals Review for April

We returned to South Carolina in April and were very busy with doctor's appointments, home maintenance, and a camping trip. 
 
1. Learn something new. - I learned Tunisian crochet to make a couple of dishcloths. I’m still practicing my watercolor painting and my ukulele.
2. Knit at least 1 sweater - I  finished with my sweater. (Collins Tee)
3. Yarn - more out than in (use more yardage than I buy) – no yarn bought! I finished my Collins Tee, Patchwork Weasley Socks, April Prayer Shawl, Charity Hat, and a Cat Mat.
●      Yarn used - 4524 yds.
●      -Yarn bought - 0
3. Complete a shawl - I finished my Shawlography shawl
4. Try 4 new recipes. - I didn’t try anything new in April.
5. Stretch regularly (at least 20 days out of the month) - We started back at the senior center and participated in our exercise class regularly. 
6. Create at least 2 scrapbook pages each month. - Made 2 pages for April. (Total - 32)
7. Participate in the Photo a Day challenge – Completed through April. 
8. Read the Bible every day. - yes
9. Read 100 books - Read 14 in January, 2 in February, 6 in March, and 5 in April. 
10. Read 12 nonfiction books. – 5 so far.
-   Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today by Valerie Bertinelli
-   Prince William: The Man Who Will Be King by Penny Junor 
-   I Still Believe: A Memoir by Jeremy Camp
-   Call the Midwife by Jennifer Worth
-  I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy
What are your goals for this year? Please share.

 




Friday, April 28, 2023

Useful Information In and Out of the Classroom 4/28/2023

Here are some interesting sites that I’ve found this week, thanks to my PLN. As a teacher, I feel we have to keep up to date concerning research in our field and current issues in the education system. I hope some of these inspire you, inform you, and even have you asking questions. Thank you for coming by and visiting!

Note: Each resource is labeled with a level and subject area to make it easier to use.

Levels: E: Elementary; M: Middle; H: High; G: General, all levels; SN: Special Needs; T: Teachers

Subject Areas: LA: Language Arts, English, Reading, Writing; M: Math; S: Science; Health; SS: Social Studies, Current Events; FA: Fine Arts; Music, Art, Drama; FL: Foreign Language; PE: Physical Ed; C: Career; A: All

River Runner - “Click to drop a raindrop anywhere in the contiguous United States and watch where it ends up.” (L:G; SA:S)

When Will Spring Bird Migration Hit Its Peak? - “Spring migration timing varies across the U.S. and even within regions, according to radar data analyzed by BirdCast.” (L:G; SA:S)

Pathway to Financial Success - “Pathway to Financial Success empowers you to take control of your financial future. Explore the self-paced online modules and other tools to equip you to make sound financial decisions to meet your life goals.” (L:H; SA:M,C)

WWF Free Rivers - free app; “WWF Free Rivers puts an entire landscape in your hands. Through this immersive, augmented reality experience, you’ll discover a river that flows through the lives of people and wildlife, and how their homes depend on those flows. Dam the river to see what happens, and then try different options for sustainable development that keeps the river healthy and flowing. Collect stories of people and animals along the way!” (L:G; SA:S)

Aquation: The Freshwater Access Game - “Choice, strategy, balance, and . . . water equity? Parts of the planet are struggling to get enough water. Use each region's wealth to build pipes, desalinate water, and conduct research to bring water where it's needed most. Monsoons, dry spells, disease, and even cursed lawn sprinklers can help or hinder your progress. Manage your wealth and water carefully to solve the world's water crisis!” (L:M,H; SA:S)

Original photo by Pat Hensley

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Duke Ellington Day

Duke Ellington Day commemorates the life of jazz musician Edward Kennedy Ellington. Born April 29th, 1899 in Washington D.C., Ellington was a famous American composer, pianist, and bandleader of a jazz orchestra that performed at Harlem's Cotton Club during the 1920s. In the 1930s, his music spread internationally as he and his orchestra toured through Europe. Ellington is considered to have elevated the status of jazz from mere music to an art form. Ellington’s career, which saw him write nearly 2000 compositions, many of which continue to inspire jazz artists today, spanned nearly five decades until he passed away in New York City in May of 1974. In 1999, Ellington was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize to commemorate the centennial of his birth and his contributions to music. A decade later, New York mayor Michael Bloomberg declared April 29th, 2009 as Duke Ellington Day in honor of his 110th birthday.

I thought it would be a good time to watch a couple of videos featuring Duke Ellington. 





Wednesday, April 26, 2023

National Superhero Day

National Superhero Day is a day dedicated to celebrating both real and fictional heroes. The holiday was created by Marvel Comics in 1999 to celebrate fictional heroes at first, but then transitioned into honoring those who help fight crime and save lives in the real world. According to Zavvi, Spiderman is the most popular superhero in 2022. National Superhero Day is celebrated annually on April 28th.”

It would be great to give prompts on this topic such as:
  • If you could be any superhero, who would you be?
  • What superpower would you want to have?
  • If you were a superhero, what would you look like?
  • Who is your real-life superhero and why?
It would also be fun to do some research on Marvel comics and have students discuss which comic hero is their favorite.

Take a poll and divide the class into four groups with each group taking the top four superheroes. They need to convince the rest of the class why their superhero is the best.

What other activities would you do on this day? Please share.