26 November 2009

Ben is a genius

My friend's briliant idea for his 4 month old's first Halloween.

24 November 2009

paradigm shift

This morning I came to work and my classroom seemed different. Alot of my decorations were missing, my books were not the subjects they usually are, and there was all sorts of quadratic looking rubbish scribbled on my white board.

I commented on this strange phenomenon to a few of my boys who instantly burst into snickering laughter. You guessed it. I was a victim of a high school senior prank. And so was the math teacher!

When my linear teaching associate came later we all had a jolly laugh about the whole thing. But then as school time and the rest of the boys started to arrive, we decided to have a little fun. Right as school started, the math teacher looks at me and asks "What am I teaching today?"

I responded without a pause, "The Berlin Wall just fell down. What do I got?" "Algebra II" was the answer. Got it.

So, while my buddy taught the Czech factory workers revolution and Tienanmen Square, I taught the square roots of irrational numbers and 'factoring' irregular equations. This proved slightly difficult since the last math class I attended was nigh unto a decade ago. However, I did manage to pull off some pretty nice off-the-cuff Algebra.

It was a blast, and the boys had no idea how to take it all. Some of them were amazed we could teach both subjects. Some of them just kept asking questions like I actually knew math. It was a riot. Chew on that senior pranksters!

04 November 2009

A Poetic Rant

It is not enough to complain, you need to be heard.
You won't be heard by just speaking. You need a message clear enough to hear.
You won't be heard if you use only words. Your actions personify your message.
Can you see what I am talking about? Am I being clear?
Understanding precedes appropriate action. Do you understand?

Questions help build the bridge of understanding.
Just don't assume you can already see what is on the other side.
If we are honest, we will admit we don't.

The truth is you may find yourself on the same side after the bridge is built
The side that doesn't know how to solve the problem

Problems are solved with solutions, not by yelling at them.
I never met a math equation that backed down after I cursed at it.
People are not problems. Don't yell at people.
Most problems always have multiple solutions. Most solutions, have names.
People have names
Like you

I know your name
I wish I knew your problem
Either way, they need us to find a solution
What do you have to say about that? Will that be a problem for you?

Working with me?
And not against me
To create a solution
And understand the problem
To see our voices in our deeds
The bridge that answers our true question:
"Can you hear me?"

In the end, I sometimes hear the "no." But I still live for the "yes."
And that is enough for me

03 November 2009

haha #5

"Keep hand higher on the lady's back."
-First line on my buddy's Dance 180 foxtrot evaluation form