Saturday, March 12, 2016

Educational Links 3/13/16

According to Zeman, “Some people say it is impossible to reconcile science and art, but new brain imaging technology means we are now seeing a growing body of evidence about how the brain responds to the experience of art. This was a preliminary study, but it is all part of work that is helping us to make psychological, biological, anatomical sense of art.”

Teaching Is Trying New Activities

Improve Learning with Hands-On Classroom Games, Activities 

Engaging Classroom Games for All Grades 

STEM/STEAM Lessons, Activities and Ideas 

Greta's Game Station 


10 simple activities to encourage physical
activity in the classroom 

Classroom Activities 

Activity Ideas for Middle School Students 

Games We Can Play in Middle School 

Kagan Professional Development 


Teachable Moment: Danny Boy, The Soul of Melancholy, The Soul Of Ireland

Danny Boy - Finbar Wright

 Oh Danny boy, the pipes, 
the pipes are calling.
From glen to glen, 
and down the mountain side.

The summer's gone, 
and all the flowers are falling.
'Tis you, 'tis you 
must go and I must bide.

But come ye back 
when summer's in the meadow,
Or when the valley's hushed 
and white with snow.

And I'll be here
in sunshine or in shadow.
Oh Danny boy, oh Danny boy,
I love you so.

But if you come, 
and all the flowers are falling.
And I am dead, 
as dead I might well be.

You'll come and find 
the place where I am lying.
And kneel and say 
an "Ave" there for me.

And I will hear, 
though soft your tread above me.
And all my grave 
will warmer sweeter be.

And you will bend 
and tell me that you love me.
And I shall sleep
in peace until you come to me. 

But if I live,
and should you die for Ireland,
Let not your dying thoughts 
be just of me.

But say a prayer to God 
for our dearest Ireland.
I know she'll hear
and help to set her free.

And I will take your pike 
and place my dearest,
And strike a blow, 
though weak the blow may be.

T'will help the cause 
to which your heart was nearest 
Oh Danny Boy, Oh, Danny boy 
I love you so.


Educational Links 3/12/16

New SAT Receives Positive Feedback From Students Thus Far - See more at:

Teaching Strategies to Promote a Self-Directed Classroom 

Coordination and Motor Skills: What to Expect at Different Ages

Researchers link inequality to high school dropout rates 

Is Immaturity Mistaken for ADHD? 

Design Thinking in Education: Empathy, Challenge, Discovery, and Sharing 

Students Who Lose Recess Are the Ones Who Need It Most 

Lesson Plan: Teach Students How To Rebuff Terrorist Recruiters 

New SAT Receives Positive Feedback From Students Thus Far
 Learning Disabilities: Myths and Realities 1-12

Myth 4: Children with LD are just lazy or unmotivated.

This myth plagues children with ADHD, too. A learning disability is not a character flaw, and children who struggle with LD are often trying as hard — or harder — than their peers. It’s important that parents and teachers offer support and understanding; otherwise, children with learning disabilities can develop low self-esteem or set low expectations for themselves and become apathetic about school and their future.


Friday, March 11, 2016

Monet and Vivaldi: Tulips, Music and Spring

Claude Monet Tulip Field with the Rijnsburg Windmill

Here is the first cousin of Monet's tulips in my garden.
I was hoping to give you just a little blast of Spring--the brilliant blue sky after a spring shower, the shocking, vibrant red, yellow, purple of bulb flowers blaring through the winter's end grey, the enthusiastic chirp and twitter of the birds now activated for the season like an army just getting out of boot camp. I can just about do it with Monet and Vivaldi--but I can't send you the still-chilly-but-not-freezing breeze on a finally sunny day or the scent of earth unfreezing. You'll have to go outside for that.

Wish you could smell these narcissus!



Oh those spring showers!

Vivaldi Spring







Women's History Month: The Bronte Sisters

Anne, Emily, and Charlotte Brontë, by their brother Branwell. He painted himself among his sisters, but later removed the image so as not to clutter the picture.
The three daughters of a minister in rural England almost two hundred years ago do not seem like candidates for authors of strong female characters in near-horror gothic novels-but there you have Emily, Charlotte and Anne Bronte.

Their real lives in the moors of Yorkshire germinated the seeds for Jane Eyre, Cathy and Heathcliff, and what some consider the first feminist novel, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. 

The unusually bright girls were surrounded by nurturing, attentive adults. But life in the beginning of the 19th century was difficult. At a young age, the girls lost their mother and two older sisters, had a difficult experiences at boarding schools, and their beloved brother suffered from alcoholism. However, they had been permitted creative outlets, and despite the social expectations to become a governess, teacher or wife, the three Bronte sisters adopted nom-de-plumes and wrote extraordinary novels.

Brontë family

If you travel to England, you can visit the sister's home.

The Bronte Society and Bronte Parsonage Museum

Jane Eyre was published in 1847 by the eldest sister, Charlotte. It is the compelling life story of a girl orphaned and navigating through a treacherous series of difficult relatives, boarding school tragedies, a Byronic figure making for tense moments while governess, stressful marriage proposals, and a denouement of  crashing finality. Jane proves an indomitable taking-charge-of-her-life female character. Charlotte Bronte initiated literary insights that influenced James Joyce's stream of consciousness almost a hundred years later.

Jane Eyre has been produced in film and miniseries. This is my favorite version:

Jane Eyre (2006 miniseries) /wiki/Jane_Eyre_%282006_miniseries%29  


Linton/Earnshaw Geneology

Encouraged by the success of Charlotte's novel, Emily published Wuthering Heights. This is another doozy of a book. The story takes place in an isolated location on the English moors. Intense emotions ferment between and within the two families in the story, one fairly normal (the Lintons) and one pretty much dysfunctional (Earnshaws). Of course romance is involved. Also, profound unforgiveness, jealously, rage and several more of the seven deadly sins that makes for an enjoyable and memorable gothic novel. Heathcliff and Cathy are unforgettable. 

Sadly, Emily Bronte passed away shortly after the book was published. It is considered a classic of English literature.

Heathcliff and Cathy. (1992 version with Ralph Fiennes)

This is my favorite production of Wuthering Heights, even more than Olivier as Heathcliff. Guess you can tell I like my Masterpiece Theater.

Wuthering Heights (2009 television serial) 82009_television_serial%29 

Anne Bronte's novel The Tenant of Wildfell Hall is considered the first feminist novel. Her protagonist, Helen Graham, is an abused wife who chooses to defy her alcoholic husband and takes her son with her as she flees, breaking several English laws that prohibit any women's rights. The story includes a shocking scene in which Helen slams the door in his face. (Remember, this is 1847 in Victorian England.) Where would Anne get such ideas? Interestingly enough, her father, although an Anglican minister, at one time had counseled an abused wife to leave her husband. There were many instances within the 'dissenting' churches of the time that empowered women more than traditional churches, and Anne's aunt was a Methodist. Though even now, sadly, many churches of many faiths would not support this move. So, this is still a shocking novel. The main character encounters a variety of interesting persons, observing hypocrisy in both male and female. Helen maintains her strong mores and even comes out with a happy ending. This Bronte sister also died almost immediately after her book was published. (Tuberculosis was rampant.) There was such a hubbub about this book that Charlotte Bronte did not want it republished, thinking to preserve her sister's reputation.

Surprisingly, I have not seen this production. It was on Masterpiece Theater while I was working on my masters and not watching much television.

But Netflix has it! It is now at the top of my queue. (Update--it is very good.)

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1996)

 After meeting the Bronte sisters, we will watch how our little girls play make believe with more interest.



Teachable Moment: Brian Boru in the Irish (Brian Bóramha in Gaeilge)

Brian Boru united Ireland. Quite a rare feat! Around a thousand years ago, he drove out the Vikings. The language of this song is the ancient Irish tongue still spoken and learned in Irish schools: Gaelic. The Irish also created their own written language about the third century, which is an unusual accomplishment in the history of the world. The British worked overtime to forbid the speaking of Irish. It obviously didn't work

 The Irish Language Today

Alan Stivel and his harp.

This music is from Alan Stivel, who is a Breton from France.

Alan Stivell - Brian Boru

Here is the translation, which is from the Irish as well as Breton.

The following information about the six Celtic nations is from Wikipedia
The six territories recognized as Celtic nations are Brittany (Breizh), Cornwall (Kernow), Ireland (Éire), the Isle of Man (Mannin), Scotland (Alba), and Wales (Cymru). Each of these regions has a Celtic language that is either still spoken or was spoken into modern times. In addition, areas of north-western Spain and Portugal, particularly Galicia, Cantabria and Asturias and Minho, Douro, Tras-os-Montes (Northern Portugal) are oftentimes identified as Celtic, due to the unique culture of the region. Unlike the others, however, no Celtic language has been spoken there in modern times. Before the expansions of the Roman Republic and Germanic tribes, a significant part of Europe was Celtic.

Here is a comparison of English and Irish, using the Lord's Prayer. Irish is how St. Patrick would have spoken it (if he wasn't using Latin.)

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

Ár nAthair atá ar neamh, hallowed a bheith thy ainm. Dtaga do ríocht, beidh agad a dhéanamh ar an talamh mar a dhéantar ar neamh, tabhair dúinn inniu ár n-arán laethúil, agus maith dúinn ár bhfiacha, mar a mhaithimidne siúd a bhféichiúna dúinn. Ná lig sinn i gcathú, ach saor sinn ó olc. Amen.

Here is the English ranslation of Alan Stivel's song:

Brian Boru

Brian Boru will die for the life of Ireland
Peace in the province of Ulster and in Dublin
Family unity, tribal unity
Unity in the world of the Celts
From so much battle to so much peace
From a world of divine blessings, love
From so much battle to so much peace
From a world of divine blessings, love
They said that this was a (funeral) procession
That people would be solemn
But we were not sorrowful
Brian Boru will die for the life of Ireland
Peace in the province of Ulster and in Dublin
Family unity, tribal unity
Unity in the world of the Celts
Brian Boru will die for the life of Ireland
Peace in the province of Ulster and in Dublin
Family unity, tribal unity
Unity in the world of the Celts
From so much battle to so much peace
From a world of divine blessings, love
From so much battle to so much peace
From a world of divine blessings, love
We are like the weather
Especially the sun
And we chose a soft place by the river


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Women's History Month: A mighty GIRL
Where has this website been all my life? Well, of course, for 95% of it, it didn't exist, but I have to say, once I liked A Mighty Girl on Facebook, I share every outstanding, excellent post everytime. Which is several a day.

The writers and researchers find so many interesting, encouraging treasures for girls, women, moms, sisters, grandmas, aunties, cousins, husbands with wives, boyfriends with girlfriends, brothers with sisters, uncles with nieces, dads with daughters, grandads with granddaughters, and the public in general, that I feel a loss I have not had this feed on FB from the start!

Resources of the marvelous contributions of females past and present, influencing females in the future. Books for females of all ages. I am astonished. There is so much I don't know! We ladies have been busy!

Here are a few posts that blew my mind.
These last two teens invented an effective bomb detection system. Mighty Girls are not always scientists, but this can definitely encourage lasses to go into STEM.

Thank you, folks at A Mighty Girl. We appreciate it.

Educational Links 3/11/16


9 Rules For Digital Citizenship 

Top Educators Lament Poor Teacher-Retention Efforts 

Report: Inclusion On Rise In Nation’s Schools 

5 Tips to Help Your Students Write More, More, More! 

Best of Teacher HELPLINE!: 6 Interactive Reading Strategies to Boost Student Engagement!-6-interactive-reading-strategies-to-boost-student-engagement 

The Difference Between Sensory Processing Issues and ADHD 

When Integrating A School, Does It Matter If You Use Class Instead Of Race? 

To be clear, there's evidence that socially as well as racially integrated schools benefit all students. When a school reaches a stable level of about 30 percent middle-class students, the lower-income students achieve at higher levels and the privileged students do no worse, says Halley Potter, the author of one of the Century Foundation reports. Similarly, the racial achievement gap shrinks in schools that have less than a "supermajority" of 60 percent of any one race.