Avoiding Americanization of Aussie Rules

Since I mentioned my beloved Detroit Red Wings in my last blog, I suppose that some of you are wondering how I feel about them missing the playoffs for the first time in a quarter-century this past season. First of all, given that Mom passed away less than a month into the regular season, it was pretty much impossible for me to feel any kind of emotional attachment to the team in the wake of everything else that was going on around me. Honestly, I…

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Stunting Students’ Growth

College Access Index Shows Shrinking Levels of Economic Diversity (npr.org) Senate Republicans Reject DeVos’ Proposed Education Cuts (rollcall.com) DeVos Says More Money Won’t Help Schools; Research Says Otherwise (npr.org) I was teaching a composition class in Toledo a few years ago, and in that class I had a student who always wore sports-themed clothes. He was a Red Wings fan, so I was able to get him to talk whenever I brought up the team’s fortunes (at least they made the playoffs that year, grumble…

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Let the Circle Be Broken

I’ve mentioned before, on several occasions, that one of the most profound and affecting lessons I learned about being a teacher, back when I was still reading up on pedagogical basics, is that when you don’t teach that something is capable of being changed, then you teach — through your silence — that it can never be changed. This doesn’t mean that change is likely, or that attempts to change won’t be met with strong resistance, or that teachers shouldn’t caution students about the difficulties…

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Object Permanence

After one of the warmest winters in recent memory, trees are just now¬†beginning to take leaf here in Toledo. That event is normally a happy one for me, as I can finally relax about the perils of winter driving, hang my heavy coat up and get ready for the most tolerable of all the seasons in this part of the country. (I’m still a summer child, but great googly moogly, have they been getting too hot around here lately.) This year, though, the reminder of…

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Losing the Story

A few weeks ago, when Rachel Maddow released two pages¬†of one of the president’s old tax returns, many people criticized her for waiting until the second segment of her show to get to the actual release; even Stephen Colbert did a full-on parody of Maddow’s on-air style on his CBS show. For those of us who watch Maddow’s show regularly, though — I don’t always agree with her, but she does have the best prime time news show out there right now (which may be…

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