Think Create Share Grow

Archive for March, 2012


NARA to Release 1940 Census Records on April 2nd


The 72-year wait is over.

On April 1, 1940, there were 132,164,569 people living in America. And today, 87 percent of Americans can find a direct family link to one – or more – of them.

When the 1940 U.S. Federal Census is opened to the public this April, you’ll have a window into every one of those 132 million lives. Their names, where they lived, who shared their house, even where they were five years earlier.

Visit your local NARA or your public library.


Lake Nipissing

I have decided to go to Lake Nipissing, Northern Ontario, Canada this August, a farewell bow to my former life. I know little about this place. A Frenchman, Etienne Brule visited it in 1611; he was an associate of Champlain. I am on his trail and the trail of all those people who jumped off cliffs to discover new worlds. I am ready to do that. I am so ready.


Apple Research

This post is dedicated to my mother who taught in California from 1929 to 1966. I remember her bringing home research projects done by her elementary students. She spread them out on the dining room table and I watched her work through them as she talked to me about each one.

Hard to measure ’em isn’t it?

In front of the whole class, my algebra teacher in 9th grade said that I was the student with the lowest scores and yet, she added that I had tried harder than anyone else. It was one of those red-face moments for me.

She was approachable, my algebra teacher. I would visit her to get help. No matter how much she wanted me to do well and she worked with me, I didn’t get it until I took Algebra twenty years later. I got As then. My brain had matured and so had I.

I got the low marks in 9th grade; I was responsible for them. Not my teacher!

I read the words “lifelong learning, ” “learning outcomes,” “powerful predictor,” “effective teaching,” over and over again in commentaries and discussions on education and students and teachers.

What are we all doing?

We have at best 100 years, any of us, in this most magnificent place.

I am glad my algebra teacher didn’t get held responsible for my C in her class. I remember her until this day yet I don’t remember her name. I remember her kindness and caring. That is what it is all about: kindness, understanding, helpfulness, and most important love.

I don’t see those words thrown around in educational conversations. Hard to measure ‘em isn’t it?


“Once you learn that you will never be the same again…”

One Small Change

My great grand nephew needs help in school. My best friend’s granddaughter needs help in school.

 My grand nephew lives in Berkeley, California. My friend’s granddaughter lives in Atlanta. I live overseas and work at an international school. I am retiring.

 My son, who now works in Ohio attended the school where I work. At the time, it was a miracle because class size was about 15 across the grades. He would have needed help too, if the class size had been larger; but he made it through, studied oboe, got fantastic scholarships, and went back to the United States for college. In first grade, he had ten in his class. First grade is important.

 Class size matters. My friend’s granddaughter is in a school, in a fancy neighborhood with 25 to the class. It’s fine if you aren’t dealing with dyslexia. The little girl, second grader, has all the social skills you would ever want but she has difficulty reading.

 My grand nephew will succeed. His grandma has always been a fighter and for him she will fight until the battle is won and he has an aide in his class. Grandma is retired. She has the time , the inclination and the lawyer. Bless her.

 I am retiring. Class size matters. It matters more than anything. Ask a teacher. For all those children who need help in school, we can help them. Easy. Don’t worry about curriculum; don’t worry about textbooks; don’t worry about technology; don’t even worry about aides if the class size is small enough.

 My great grand nephew needs help in school. My best friend’s granddaughter needs help in school. How many more? Just how many would be affected by a simple change in the amount of children in every class. It costs money. So does Iraq. Which is more important?

Tag Cloud