Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

These are the images on Google's main page. :-)

Happy Halloween!


For an English version:

How Much Math Do We Really Need?

This article was an interesting one, given two things:

1. My work in public education
2. My love for math, science and technology

The author of this opinion is correct in that we are "selling" math to the masses like you do hair cream.

The author has also, however, asked the question of why do we need to shove more math down the throats of children, when we are producing Nobel laureates with or without pushing the math "hair cream"?

Not to be too obvious, but if more people, including our elected officials, understood math a little better, we might have been able to better avoid the recession we now live in. When the people monitoring the types of transactions that created this mess cannot handle the math to understand those transactions and what the consequences of those transactions are, what does that say about us?

The other reason why we need to teach the kids higher math (algebra, geometry, calculus)? Because, quite frankly, that is where the jobs are. Even if math is not used directly, the logic skills taught with learning math and science are also required for higher level jobs in the computer industry.

Now, that is not to say there is no value in teaching the liberal arts, including music, art, but also about history and storytelling. Why?

I've had on DVD, for some time now, an interview from the Charlie Rose program where he speaks with filmmaker George Lucas. George Lucas uses a lot of technology in making his movies, but understands the power of the story. At one point in the interview, George explains the importance of teaching the liberal arts in education. To paraphrase it:

Math and science can teach a child the how. Liberal arts, namely history, can teach the child why or why not.

The point is, if you want to teach a child how to build a weapon, that's the math and science. Liberal Arts teaches the child the reasons why they should or should not build the weapon. Understanding the consequences is a big segment of living as a part of society. We should also not lose that portion of education in order to chase the all important "Math in the U.S. vs. the World" statistic.

Okay, I'll get off my soapbox now.

Still Enjoying Emma.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

You Know I Like FarmVille on Facebook...

...just not THIS much.

I've also heard news reports that people are setting their alarm clocks to get up and harvest their crops.  While I enjoy the game so I can unwind from a long day, I don't allow it to rule my life.  Sorry.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Burt Rutan

That Virgin Galactic Space Ship I've mentioned earlier is the brain child of Burt Rutan.


Keep in mind David Carradine's body was found in a hotel closet.

Friday, October 15, 2010

YouTube and Copyrights

I've wondered how YouTube has worked with copyright owners regarding people posting andio and/or video not owned by the submitter.

Are You Ready?

I have been waiting for a few years for when this was going to become a reality for everyone, not just those selected to be in a space program.  Congratulations to Sir Richard Branson, but most importantly, to Burt Rutan who came up with the design.

Here is the story of Space Ship One from Discovery:  Black Sky

Thursday, October 14, 2010


If you've read my previous blog posts about, you'll understand that this is a really nice service.

New On My iPod

I'm finally catching up on watching some of my DVD's over Fall Break and fell in love with this gem of a musical number.

Here is the scene where the music is used:

If you like Jane Austen, get this movie on DVD.  It's worth the price.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

LDS Church Responds To HRC Petition

Let me make a few things clear.

For me, I agree completely with what has been said here. I believe, as does my Church that Marriage should only exist between a man and a woman. Marriage is ordained of God, not man.

I will also state that I agree that any bullying or harassment of an individual or group should not be tolerated.

I will further state this: that while, as a country, we believe in the rights of the individual, we should also remember that there are rights to worship. And, last I checked, the freedom to express your worship in however way you please should be not only individual, but also as a Church. People have no right in dictating to a Church what they should and should not believe because it is not "politically correct". In my personal opinion, God has made his judgements clear and has not ever changed his mind.

Any attempt to harass others because of their religious beliefs is also bullying.

That said, there are a number of articles and resources talking about bullying:

Where Are His Parents?

And people wonder what is wrong with education...

Okay.  So you think this is your job?

What are the laws of what you can & cannot do with this "job"?

How are you tracking the money you make with this "job"?

How long do you foresee being able to do this "job" and what are you going to be doing with your life if this "job" falls through?

Oh, that's right.  You can't answer any of these questions.  Why?  Because you've been cutting your education while doing this "job".

Monday, October 11, 2010

What Today's Nobel Says About the US Unemployment Crisis

What Today's Nobel Says About the US Unemployment Crisis

This article points out why we need to extend higher education out to beyond the walls of the formal college campus, as I've pointed out in a previous blog post.

Decker Was Right

As was my grandmother. She died 11 years before I was born, but she used to tell my Mother when she was young to not go after the "pretty boys". They are too focused on themselves and will prove to be poor choices for husbands. I can honestly say, I chose VERY well with Decker. :-)

Now there is a study out that says our dream guy turns out to look much different than the fantasy.

Dream Lovers Can't Compare To Real Life Romeos

For all of my romance writer friends, you might want to take a look at this. :-)

Finally Some Answers

Where others just want to whine about our education system, here is someone with some ideas based on what is working in other countries.

Are You Surprised By This? I'm Not.

Unfriending On Facebook

I found this interesting.

Too Cute!

A Fantastic Way To Celebrate Metric Day

10/10/10 was known as "metric day" to students, however the landmark day was celebrated in some other special ways as well.

Many thanks to Robin Leach for sharing this wonderful event!

Donny Osmond Hosts 10/10/10 Proposals, Proposes To Wife

Friday, October 8, 2010

Viktor Frankl

If you've read Man's Search For Meaning, you'll enjoy this.  Many thanks to my niece, Destiny, for posting this.

Get Ready...

Ah, Halloween.  I love Halloween.  There are all kinds of possibilities of who (or what) you can become for a day.  Martha Stewart & Co. always have creative ideas on how to get there.

Mummy Makeup

Monday, October 4, 2010

Stomp Out Bullying

If you didn't know, today was Stomp Out Bullying day.

Here's the link for more information:

Sunday, October 3, 2010

For My Writer Friends

The brief biography of Elif Shafak from

Experience Marketing

I just found this talk while going through some of the other TED Talks on their web site and found it quite interesting.  If you've read my blog for the last little while, you might remember my using Barry Manilow as an example for how experience marketing could help sell tickets to his show in Vegas:

Turns out I might be closer to a solution to that problem than I realized.  :-)

The next question is:  If "experiences" are what sell in today's market, does "experience" education work?  Is this how schools and districts looking to attract students should be marketing themselves?  Of course, this means they are going to have to innovate in order to provide for these "experiences", which would mean a new model for teaching in the classroom.  The tuition based schools are already doing this, but how do you incorporate this in publicly funded schools?

Where Good Ideas Come From

This is another of the latest talks from the last TED Conference.

As many of you have noticed from my blog, or know about me personally, I think outside the box when it comes to ideas. I tend to view information like pieces in a jig saw puzzle and use those pieces when I'm solving a problem. But, what I hadn't thought about until I saw this, was the value social networks play in also coming up with these solutions.

Just this past week, a teacher came to me in the lab with a problem that they didn't know how to solve. When they told me what they wanted, I was able to show them a way, using their laptop, to solve the problem, and do so in a way that was easier than the solution the teacher had come up with.

I love the final story he gives at the end and how he ties everything all together.

New Show On ABC

I don't normally get to watch tv during the school year, as I usually have "homework" (meaning grading or lesson prep) or writing to do for my writing class. I did manage to catch this show Friday night. Sadly, it will be regularly aired on Tuesday nights, which means I probably will not get to watch it unless I see it replayed online.

ABC now has the pilot episode of this show for free on iTunes:

No Ordinary Family

Just Because... Again

I love this movie.  This is "Without You" from My Fair Lady.

Spooky Movies

It's that time of year again... Halloween.  I love holidays, each for different reasons.  Halloween is the one time you can become someone else, or have some spooky fun.

There are a lot of different movies I like during Halloween, but I think this is by far my favorite to watch:

Lady In White.