EJ Travel Club

October 14, 2016

Here’s a blog to keep us informed about the November jewelry raffle.

 

EJ Travel Club

 

Premier Jewelry Raffle

Winners for this raffle will be listed below. This page will be updated weekly.

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Punctuation: Period Calls it Quits

June 19, 2016

I’m not going to lie—I’m old school. And if my keyboarding teacher taught me to double space after a period, then I’m going to stick to that habit. Man is that a hard habit to break! You can see that in some of my blog posts, I am still struggling with that. It is just something I had to do when I was in eleventh grade keyboarding, so why wouldn’t I still do it now? Because it looks silly. I try, I really do.

But now, this article is telling me that we might be coming to the end of a period?? How will people know that I’ve finished my thought? How will my sentences not look like run-ons?

Well, if you get a chance to read the article, you are going to find that there is an art to it. And even though he uses no end punctuation (except when giving examples to prove a point regarding tone), you’ll find that the subtraction of end punctuation really doesn’t take away from the article at all.

Allergic to Conferences?

June 19, 2016

I went to a conference this past Friday. It was amazing. The information supplied was incredibly informative, and it was one of the few conferences that made me feel invigorated and excited to go back into the classroom to teach.  If you’ve never heard about Act 70, let me tell you how I understand it.  Basically, if any teacher ever wants to teach something that deals with the Holocaust, human rights, or genocide, it is best that they receive training to do so.

I’ve been teaching the novel Night for as long as I’ve been teaching (16 years now), and each year I add more and more background to the Holocaust. At one of the in-services I attended, we were told that within a certain amount of time, 90% of teachers who touch on one of those subjects listed above must be trained. If that doesn’t happen, then it will become mandatory. So, I figured…why not?

Echoes and Reflections enlightened me; if not in teaching me new material and ways I could complement the novel I am teaching, then to reassure me that the information I’ve been teaching is accurate and that I have been conscientious to teaching empathy rather than trying to use shock value to get their attention.  If you’ve never been to an Echoes and Reflections seminar (or if you are requested to go to one), I highly recommend it.

Well, what does that have to do with the title of this post? Ugh…when I got home, I was horribly sick. That evening and most of yesterday I just felt icky. I think there was a bug going around though, as two others in my family had something similar. Thank goodness it hit AFTER the conference! I would have been very disappointed if I had missed it.

Who Gives a Hoot?

June 12, 2016

So my daughter is turning 4 on Tuesday. That means the planning for a birthday party is well under way. She LOVES owls, and so I’ve decided to go with an owl birthday cake.  In years past, that would have been sufficient. A cake and one or two other nods to an owl theme would have ticked all the boxes. But now, “Pinterest pressure” makes that seem like I’m not committed enough. Oh no, we need owl table covers and napkins, cupcakes in addition to a cake, owl favors, owl balloons. Owls, owls, owls, and more owls.

Don’t get me wrong, using Pinterest has generally been a positive thing for me; I’ve gotten tons of ideas for gifts, crafts, and even lesson plans. Unfortunately, I fall into that group of users who sometimes feel inadequate when confronted with posts and pictures of “perfect” parties. How do parents have so much time and energy to commit to making a birthday party come together? Are they professional party planners and caterers? I’m lucky if I can craft a decent home-made cake and remember to reserve a pavilion at the play ground.  Creating labels to adhere to serving bowls as seen in this mom’s blog? Heck no! Yes, some have time for these things, but I certainly do not.  Am I tempted? Oh my gosh, YES!! Do I know that I will fail miserably? Yup. Will my 4 year old ever realize that I had considered it and think I am a horrible human being for not even attempting? Nope.

Sometimes keeping things basic is key. That’s what I’m going with. So what is the point of this post? I guess I’m just thinking out loud as to what I’ll do for my daughter’s birthday party. I’ll use Pinterest to get some basic ideas…and then I’ll just go from there. I certainly don’t want to end up on a “nailed it” image search!  LOL

Thoughts on the 1:1 Initiative?

June 4, 2016

Our school district just made a HUGE jump into the 1:1 initiative (each student in the entire district–yes, including kindergarteners–is getting an iPad mini at the start of next school year). I have mixed feelings about this. While I am ecstatic that there will be a lot of underprivileged students who will now have the same access as their more privileged peers, I wonder if we are getting ahead of ourselves.

The Apple representative made an excellent presentation on the final day of our school year to the teachers (our last in-service day). He spoke for just under two hours about the laptops each teacher will get and the iPads we will use to help familiarize ourselves with the technology. He showed us some awesome apps (many of them were kind of pricey), and then that was it. No training. No talk about training. Our superintendent was very nice in saying that a person can’t walk without crawling. He expects us to be crawling by the end of the next school year.

The representative told us that what we think of as technology is not the same as what our students think is technology. Let me explain: I was born after electricity in the home was commonplace; after every home had a television in it; so do I consider that advanced technology? Nope. I take it for granted that they are there. The same goes for our students. Cell phones were around before they were born. Smart phones were around before they were 4. They grew up with this stuff, much like I grew up with electricity and TV. It is commonplace for them. We have to accept it and move forward, using tools students expect to have access to.

But then there is this blog that makes some great points, too. If teachers are not trained, how much use can a 1:1 initiative help the students?  I guess my head is all over the place, and my thoughts on the program are jumbled and confusing.

Trying Podcasts

April 1, 2014

A few years ago I took a course about building online collaborative environments, and now I am facilitating it.  Each year in my high school English classes I have my students orally interpret a piece of writing (i.e. children’s book, famous speech, section from a novel, poem, song lyrics). Every year I give the students the option to complete a podcast rather than standing in front of the class. Maybe if they actually heard me create one, they might jump on the chance to do one themselves. It’s been years since I’ve listened to this, but it all came back to me when I listened to it last night.

http://spring14-bce-01.wikispaces.com/5B3+Podcasts+Placement

Step 4 for Assignment 2-D-1

March 15, 2014

Now that I have posted to my blog about a student project blog, and I have commented on that blog, I am supposed to provide a link to my comment to that blog (http://tinyurl.com/kvsquh4)

If the comment had not been accepted immediately (waiting for moderation), I would post the comment here: 

The layout of your blog looks interesting and fun! More importantly, it looks like something I could use with small groups for literature circles in my English classroom. I am involved in a course that discusses the use of blogs in the classroom, and I posted to my blog about your blog project. My post can be found here: https://jennhund.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/example-blog-post-for-2-d-1/
Happy blogging!

(This is the comment I left on the blog. Notice that in the comment, there is a link to my original blog post.)

Example Blog Post for 2-D-1

March 15, 2014

The following serves as an example for steps 1&2 for the 2-D-1 Assignment:

 

I recently came across a blog for students to use to discuss books.  This specific example: http://sarahplainandtall.blogspot.com/ was about Sarah Plain and Tall, but it could easily easily be transferred to many novels.  I think I could use this with Jane Eyre in my classroom; it would give more reticent students a chance to speak and be heard in a class environment.

Another HuffPost Favorite

March 11, 2014

This next article was the original post I wanted to look at the other day (when someone had ‘liked’ it on Facebook). It was after I had watched it that I came across several other articles (including the one about the celebrity who refuses to use a cell phone).

This girl in this video speaks gibberish in several different languages, and the accents all sound pretty legit.  I’m not an expert, but I have listened to French, Spanish, American English and British English being spoken, and I think her renditions sound pretty accurate.

If you check the video out, you’ll see that she is actually just speaking nonsense words (when you hear/understand the languages you are fluent in), but her accents and animation are fascinating to watch and listen to.

The Cost of Connectivity

March 10, 2014

The online course I am involved in right now has been discussing some of the social media that is necessary for our online learning.  One medium that has been mentioned is the Huffington Post as a news source to get quick, news related material.  While I am not subscribed to the HuffPost, I can say that it pops up quite frequently on my Facebook feed (see my post about Paper).  As with a lot of online sources, I find that I tend to get “trapped” on the site.  I see one article, and I read it.  At the end of that article, I see something that catches my eye, so I read it as well. Then another article, and another, and eventually, an article that was supposed to take 5 minutes of my time has taken up 20 or more minutes!

The most recent article that caught my eye is about a celebrity who refuses to have a cell phone. I found it relevant, as I was just joking about a teacher I work with who absolutely refuses to ever use one. I like a lot of what Shailene Woodley has to say about not owning one. In fact, I think going out with a friend who is not constantly looking at her phone for the next available text would be a refreshing change.

Maybe Shailene Woodley, star of the upcoming Divergent film, is the celebrity that my fellow teacher is aspiring to be like…nah. He is just a stubborn man who wants nothing to do with something that causes him so much frustration throughout the school day (he sees the kids using them, so therefore, they must be evil!) If anything, it’s good that he has a sense of humor and that we can pick on him for being so stubborn.