• musings

    on making

    This Atlantic article examines tech culture’s celebration of creation (often at the expense of teaching and caretaking). It delves into how society values the traditionally male domain of “making” and devalues the traditionally female domain of caregiving (e.g., teaching, healthcare). Before I finished reading the first sentence, I immediately thought of What Teachers Make, a poem by Taylor Mali. What Teachers Make by Taylor Mali He says the problem with teachers is What’s a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher? He reminds the other dinner guests that it’s true what they say about teachers: Those who can, do; those who…

  • parenting

    interoperability and baby social media

    In my old life as a consultant, I supported operational and technical solutions for a Department of Justice High-Risk Metropolitan Areas Interoperability Assistance Project, which provided federal, state, and local public safety agencies with emergency intersystems communications in 25 areas at risk for terrorist attacks. I haven’t had the word “interoperability” pop into my head for a while (except for regarding school data and gradebook systems) until my recent ponderings about baby social media. I’ve been pondering how to share pictures and video of Parker via different systems to various stakeholders (grandparents, immediate family, friends, acquaintances) and with different technologies (iPhone apps, Android apps, websites, printed paper books or calendars).…

  • fitness

    blogger flywheel class

    Today was another big post-baby fitness milestone: the first spin class! I took a blogger class via Blog and Tweet Boston, opting for the spin one with Catie Macken. I’d taken Azure Campbell‘s Flybarre class with Jen and my sister the week before, and that kicked my butt just as much as it did when I tried it for the first time earlier this year (with pregnancy modifications). It was great to see familiar faces like Danielle, Jessie, and Elissa when heading into the studio. I chose a bike in the back–was really glad that they let us choose our bikes this time. Spin felt a lot better than I expected it to. It really is…

  • instruction

    shaped houses

    “Want to live next door to the famous “round house?” ;-)” A lot of condo listings and sublets often pop up on the Somerville Moms email list that’s so popular around these parts. This one intrigued me, so I hit the Google. Turns out the round house has some interesting history. There is also a hexagonal house in Jamaica Plain and Octagon House in D.C. I’ve had students design their dream houses before–might add on a historical research or current real estate / house design aspect!

  • instruction

    technology to try

    Day 2 Write about one piece of technology that you would like to try this year, and why. You might also write about what you’re hoping to see out of this edtech integration. I first heard about Plickers at EdCamp Boston and put them on my “to-try” list for 2015-2016. This year, two awesome math bloggers posted about them on one good thing (misscalcul8 and Sam Shah). I’ve found it hard to incorporate edtech that needed constant access to the computer lab, Chromebook cart, and school Internet. I’m hoping to cut down on the transition time usually inherent with such integration. I’m also hoping to improve my formative assessment.

  • instruction

    goals for the (second half of the) school year

    When poking around my blogroll for blogs to comment on today, I found this challenge linked from Everybody is a Genius. I know it was meant for September, and I’m not in the classroom right now, but I want to think (and write) about teaching. Day 1 Write your goals for the school year. Be as specific or abstract as you’d like to be! This is for when I come back from maternity leave on February 1. 1) Figure out how to get my lesson planning and grading done efficiently so that when Parker is home from daycare, I can have quality time with him and my husband and get…

  • instruction

    catapults

    This post is a shoutout to my father-in-law, who recently had kids (aged 4-12) make catapults out of Dollar Store materials at a school open house. He made one working model as an example in case students really needed help starting, but otherwise aimed to not tell students how to make them and encouraged them to put together what they wanted. The art teacher also had a center set up for the kids to decorate their catapults. I love the incorporation of both art and the design process. I’ve used catapults for quadratic modeling before, and would love to modify that activity with some of the aspects from this one: Using the bigger…

  • parenting

    babywearing

    Babywearing is amazing for being able to get things done around the house while holding a (sleeping or awake) baby, for commuting on the bus or T, or for taking the baby on outings where a stroller would just be too bulky. I registered for the Ergo360 and infant insert, thinking that it would cover all my babywearing needs. I had to wait to use the Ergo until Parker weighed over 7 pounds, and was a bit nervous about using it at first, so I ended up trying a few wrap carriers around the house and then on short outings before trying soft structured carriers. I would tell expectant or…

  • appetite,  instruction,  parenting

    on math, date nights, and yummy food

    My husband’s boss gave us the following sage advice for new parenthood: go on a date night once a week. I didn’t realize how important and effective that advice was until last night’s date night (our first since September 1st). We’d gotten into more of a parenting routine over the past three months, including getting out and about with the baby to events such as a Halloween party or to a sushi restaurant for my birthday. However, we were always “on.” Watching one kid used to seem theoretically easier to me than watching 29 at a time in the classroom. Now, teaching a packed classroom would feel like relief from the…

  • appetite,  parenting

    mom-meals: pulled chicken tacos

    The first few weeks of parenthood filled our trash can with almost as many takeout containers as dirty diapers. Now that we are getting back into cooking, I’m trying to make more meals that require as little active time (chopping, stirring, assembling) as possible. It’s been a gradual improvement from eating random things out of the fridge with one hand while holding Parker with the other arm to cooking pasta with him in the baby carrier, but I missed my old Sunday meal prep routine and the time it saved during the week. People have recommended Blue Apron as a way to make cooking easier. I think I’d feel more…