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A Different Narrative of American Education (from 7-13-2013)
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I recently joined a group on Facebook called the Badass Teachers Association. I joined it because I, like the other 20,000-plus people who joined in the group’s first couple of weeks, am fed up with teachers being blamed for everything that is wrong with society. I started a thread there, about changing the narrative of Read More >>


Intellectual Distancing (written during the pandemic of 2020)
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We are social distancing to avoid the spread of something bad. But I also feel that we are intellectual distancing, and doing so is preventing the spread of something good, or rather, of a multitude of good things.  I’m not talking just about the “distance learning” that teachers around our country have been asked to Read More >>


Defining School During a Pandemic
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I left for Spring Break, as many of us did, expecting to be back in a week. Obviously a week became two, and then two weeks became a month and a half, and that is likely to become the remainder of the year for us here in Florida as it has for much of the Read More >>


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 >>


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