Sunday, April 26, 2009

Nationwide search for UGA professor accused of triple slaying - News

Nationwide search for UGA professor accused of triple slaying - News

This is really scary dude. Thinking of everyone in my undergraduate university community.

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'm a leader because told me so!

You Are the Leader

You are inspiring and uplifting. You bring out the best in people, through both nurturing and challenging them.

You always can see the big picture in life. You are very philosophical and deeply spiritual.

You understand people, and you can look at their lives objectively. You can help others grow and heal.

People feel comforted by your presence. You help them gain perspective on their lives.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Teaching Reading vs. Brain Surgery

I have to post this. I'm in school to be a reading teacher, and while reading something for class tonight, I ran across an article in which the author was comparing herself to a brain surgeon. She's a clinical psychologist, so her research is rather scientific, but it got me thinking. I posted the following in my class's reading response journal, but I'd like to get my blogger buddies' feedback. What do you think?

I have said before that teaching is not like brain surgery, but I think I was thinking in terms of life or death. When I surgeon inserts a scalpel into my brain, s/he better be darn sure he knows what s/he knows what he is doing. I don’t want to end up paralyzed or worse. I never thought about educators being compared to brain surgeons, as the author in this case asserts, but I suppose in the long term a poor reading teacher can do much harm for a student’s self-esteem, job prospects, college prospects, and the like. In terms of quality of life, a bad reading teacher can have just about as large an effect as a bad brain surgeon. I never thought of this before, but am I pretty accurate here? Is this what the author wants us to think about? I agree if it is quality of life at stake. A quality reading program is essential, and by quality I mean one that fits the individual student, not a clinical trial of students and not a clinical trial of teachers.

Part II

With the knowledge that teaching reading is like brain surgery, I think I among others will be a heck of a lot more careful that I choose the program to fit the child instead of a clinical trial. The author of this article is a scientist, and while I respect that, I can’t say that science has a whole lot to bring to education. I know that our best practices happen when we use research, and you can implement a reading program based on what happened in a clinical trial. You can. Doesn’t mean you should take that as gospel and think about nothing else. Part of the reason why teachers have such a difficult job is the fact that they have to figure out what works for each individual student in their classroom. They have to figure out what makes that particular student tick. It might be the prescribed program. Perfect. It might be the prescribed program with additional reading material that matches the interests of the child. It might something totally different. A good teacher will pick up on what works for each individual student in the classroom and go from there. Clinical trials are a good place to start, but only to start. It’s good to look at research. It’s also good to know your students. Surgeons can say the same I suppose. Not knowing too much about the surgical field, I can say that before a surgeon operates, s/he better do an extensive work-up and pre-operative interview with me. S/he better know my pre-existing conditions and potential complications based on my health history. I’d expect nothing less from a reading teacher. Before prescribing a reading program for a child, I’m going to get to know what the child likes to read. I’m going to know reading level and grade level and strengths and weaknesses all around on that particular student. I’m going to know behaviors that trigger other behaviors in reading or other subjects. I’m going to know what time of day that child works best and who that child works with most effectively. That’s just good teaching. It sets teaching and learning up for success. I don’t need a clinical trial to tell me that, but I suppose it wouldn’t hurt.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

And another...

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

My review

excellent so far

View all my reviews.

Anther book post

The Hunger Games The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

My review

I couldn't quite get into this book. Not that it wasn't well-written, just not the right time for me right now! Lots of other school stuff to read.

View all my reviews.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Another post! Three posts today!

Wintergirls Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
Like any other Laurie Halse Anderson book I've read, I can't put this one down!

Darker than Anderson typically writes, this is a fairly accurate portrayal of the depths of an eating disorder as I understand it. Haunting. I love the way that Anderson gets into the head of her main character and makes the reader feel as if she is inside it.

View all my reviews.

Same here...

I've never been selected for jury duty either, despite being registered to vote for NINE years now. I can't wait until I am.

Random photo of the day

Feel free to comment to leave your thoughts.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


I did pick up a shift with Minneapolis Kids! Until the end of the school year, I will be working at Burroughs Elementary School from 6:30-9:30 AM every morning before joining my faithful friends at Keewaydin at 10 AM. This is the life I must lead if I wish to pursue education in Minneapolis! I must prove myself worthy of everything holy in this city. I can do this! I can't believe I agreed to this but am actually really excited about it. And I'm still working ALC until it is over in mid-May. And I'm still taking graduate courses at Hamline (7803 starts this Wednesday) and I'm going home this week for the end of Spring Break. Oh. My. Goodness. Am I going to be busy. I am swamped. I am overwhelmed. I. CAN. DO. THIS. Just so you folks know.