Memories of An Educator: The Presence

school house

This is the fourth in a series of posts: Memories of an Educator. Unlike the previous reflections, this one celebrates a teacher, a unique and dedicated teacher of many, many years.

She was indeed a presence. She didn’t merely enter a room, she presented herself. Everything about her was deliberate—purposeful: her walk, the words she chose to speak, her … Continue reading

The Childhood Challenges of Growing Up

Don't Be a Noid
A photo of the very Noid the student gave me. Regrettably, the fuse fell off the bomb years ago.

One day, while I was teaching a middle school music class, a student began playing with a small plastic toy on his desk, a Dominos Pizza Noid1. One was not allowed to do such in my class. This interaction … Continue reading

I Hope You Say “Yes”

Classroom Management1

After reconnecting with a former student yesterday, I began thinking back on my last years as a classroom teacher. I recall several other amazing students, and wonder what has become of them. I especially recall one guy, Andy, a sixth grader. All of the teachers who taught him (and I mean they all chimed in) said he … Continue reading

Memories from an Educator (Part 1)

Yesterday I unexpectedly reconnected (on Facebook) with a student, a working musician now for 20 years, from my last year as a music teacher over 25 years ago. He messaged me out of the blue: “Hello, were you a middle school chorus teacher in Georgia?” I replied: “Well, yes. But I’m thinking that was about 245 years ago now.”

The … Continue reading

Never Tell Steve…

When we travel to a new city, we just walk, walk, walk. We walk everywhere. Such was the case when we arrived in Dublin, Ireland. Ah! I loved Ireland! Our walkabout took us unexpectedly to the campus of Trinity College which was established in 1592.

These are just two of the photos I shot while we were briefly on the … Continue reading

Substitute Teachers (Important for Educators)

With heavy and relentless marketing efforts, it’s no wonder we easily get things confused.

I came across a stenciled sign in San Francisco that contained only the words in the first 2 ideas presented below. The sign got me thinking about how we easily substitute something in our minds for something it is not. We actually make this swap without … Continue reading

The Past Tense

A few years ago I wrote a blog post, “I’ll Buy a Vow*l”, about the state budget horrors of California. I jokingly stated that, to raise revenue, the state passed a law limiting the use of the vowel “e” from all forms of written communication. Each state resident was only allotted a fixed number of the vowels per month. … Continue reading

Fidget to Learn

pedal deskPersonally

I can say, without any hesitation, this (fidget to learn) is true for me! When I was working on my quals for my doctorate, I would walk, walk, walk: memorizing as I walked. I walked the top floor of the graduate library (a huge “u”-shaped building the top floor of which was almost always abandoned). I walked the corn … Continue reading

Going Once, Going Twice, SOLD!

American FlagI’m all for capitalism. I’m all for people making a fair buck. But I am a huge supporter of socialism, too.

How can this be?

We, in the United States, owe our children a free education. That’s socialism. And I am all for it!

In fact, I think providing every child with a free, quality education is one … Continue reading

From One Public School Principal to Another

Little Brother (cover illustration by Richard Wilkinson)
Little Brother (cover illustration by Richard Wilkinson)

Serving a community through public education is a difficult and demanding task. Public school teachers get blamed for everything. Little of what they are blamed for is actually within their sphere of influence, let alone control.

But, arguably, the hardest job in the school has to be that of the public school principalContinue reading