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The Tale of Phineas: Based on Real Events
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After my recent announcement about moving from six strips a week to just three, I received a message here at this blog from someone who loved the strip. Interestingly, the series he brought up as his favorite was a series from three years ago that wasn’t even set in the classroom or at school. It Read More >>


Quicksand River – A Learning Experience
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Many years ago I worked at a summer camp in the Adirondack Mountains called Skye Farm. I was a counselor, and one of the group-building activities we did there was called Quicksand River. It involved a group, in this case my cabin group, trying to cross a fictitious river of “quicksand lava” as I recall. Read More >>


SCHOOL WARS! An educational a. allegory b. satire c. parody d. all of the above (from 12-30-15)
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As my students will attest, I am a Star Wars fanatic. I have been since I was 10 years old in 1977 and saw the original movie from the front row.  As I began to think about the politics within the Star Wars universe, the role the Jedi Knights played in the Old Republic, and the role Read More >>


Mr. Fitz Gets Depressed: a graphic novella with commentary
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There is an epidemic of teacher depression, demoralization, and stress in this country, and for a while I was part of it.  The series of comic strips I have assembled below, is, at least for me, the most important series I have ever done. Drawing it meant I was past the events that inspired it. Read More >>


What Is Teaching?
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Back when I was still in the classroom (it seems like months already), I taught a unit I’ve been using for several years about the power of definition. One of several things I allow students to discover in our reading is that definitions help us to see to the essence of something. Using an exercise Read More >>


The Purpose of Education in a Time of Quiet Crisis
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This week will mark the 20th anniversary of Mr. Fitz, the comic strip. I won’t be having a party. It goes without saying that we are living through a strange and historic time right now – including in education. My spring break ends tonight, and tomorrow I take the first steps into the world of Read More >>


The Tell Tale Wrists: a short story (from 7-10-13)
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(Another fictional take on education that I’m still pretty happy with… DLF 2-20-20) It’s fiction time again. In case you hadn’t heard, the Gates Foundation is one of the investors in experimental bio-metric bracelets that would measure student engagement and attentiveness through electrical signals in their skin. As Dave Barry would say, I am not making this up.They Read More >>


The Common Core Workplace (from 7-9-13)
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I recently wrote about my journey, my experience with the Common Core, by turning the stages of grief upside down and beginning with Acceptance of the CCSS and ending with Denial. I’d like to delve into a few additional ideas in my next few posts. In this post, let’s take a look at the future Read More >>


A Mr. Fitz Graphic Novella: SCHOOL 2031 – The Future of Public Schools? (from 5-25-13)
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The series below may be the darkest series I’ve ever done for the strip (aside from A Teacher Gets Depressed, which follows immediately after it). It’s dark, but I think it makes valid points – and sadly none of those points seems any less valid today… (2-19-20) This February I decided to take my comic Read More >>


The Standards Shift Again: Maybe Derek Zoolander Had It Right
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In a feat of spontaneous irony (my irony is usually calculated and planned), this week I reposted blog posts from 2013 about my reactions to the Common Core Standards. I reposted them on Wednesday night – the very day those same standards were ousted here in Florida in favor of their new “B.E.S.T.” standards. So Read More >>


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