Welcome to The 134th Carnival of Education

The 134th Carnival of Education

Cooperstown, NY is a busy place in the summer. Every week 96 youth baseball travel teams [and their families] come to the Cooperstown Dreams Park to play a week-long tournament; just a few weeks ago The National Baseball Hall of Fame’s 2007 Induction Ceremony dragged over 70,000 more into a village of 2,000; this weekend the National Soccer Hall of Fame in nearby Oneonta hosted 5,000 who welcomed Mia Hamm’s enshrinement.

I thought I’d host the Carnival of Education once all this summer hoopla died down. After committing to the 134th Carnival, I realized that I was in direct competition with the New York State Fair in Syracuse.

We have 44 booths in this edition of the Carnival of Education – here’s hoping we draw more people than Wednesday night’s Hilary Duff concert at the Fairgrounds.

And now for the Midway…

  • Trials and Tribulations of the New School Year

Mrs. Bluebird spent a chunk of her third full day of school outside the building. Fire drill? Nope, real emergency.

Frumteacher gives us a solid first-day report: what went right, what went wrong and what to improve on tomorrow.

Mister Teacher at Learn Me Good has sent home a ‘welcome’ letter to parents. It’s got tips for a successful year and a few ground rules; my favorite is, “Dogfighting, convenience store robbery, and “making it rain” will not be tolerated.”

Siobhan Curious has a thoughtful submission regarding discipline at the beginning of the school year. Maybe you can help her decide… should she be “Mean ’til Halloween?”

Mamacita of Scheiss Weekly picked up her instructor’s ID today. She appears to have come to a harsh [and probably undeserved] realization.

  • Movers and Shakers in Curriculum

JD2718 has banned FOILing in his NYC classroom. You know, that tried-and-true method for multiplying binomials? It sounds radical, but he’s got plenty of reasoning behind his decision.

Terrell at Alone on a Limb tells us about the interaction between a nonagenarian and a class of 10-year olds. This article runs the range from funny to touching – it’s a must-read.

Henry of Why Homeschool read Ben Franklin’s autobiography and muses on an American institution important both then and now: the library.

Jacque at Seeking Rest in the Ancient Paths has been researching pioneer life and can’t help but ask, “How did pioneer women do all of this?!”

Shay at Life Without School tells us about how sailing was a part of her childhood. She’s passing that knowledge – and more – on to her daughter.

Jocelyn, blogging out of Lothlorien, is writing her own e-book called “How to Build a Hope Chest.” She wants to know why you have a hope chest and what it means to you.

Darren of Right on the Left Coast has to teach geometry this year from a textbook he hasn’t used. Other teachers have, so he can use their lesson plans… right?

Denise at Let’s Play Math is hooked on writing to learn math. She’s put together an excellent list of resources to help you explore math journaling.

Amanda at The Daily Planet shares her fiction reading list that ranges from Jane Austen to Lord of the Rings. If her forthcoming non-fiction list is as good, we’re all going to have to pencil in some more reading time.

  • Policy: For Better or Worse

Dave Saba of the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence website spent a day on school beautification in DC. He came away with some first-hand insight on the state of DC public schools: he’s got evidence, albeit anecdotal, that some things have improved and others haven’t.

IB A Math Teacher has a problem with his state’s ruling that Algebra I won’t count toward 3 required years of math.

Matt Johnston of Going to the Mat thinks that Maryland’s murky allowances for “test-taking anxiety” to bypass the MD high school exit exam isn’t much different than social promotion.

Old Andrew at Scenes From the Battleground details the muddled philosophy and practice behind teaching civics/politics in tough British schools.

The Education Wonks are dismayed by falling reading scores in the United States. They want to know what happened and how we might fix it.

NYC Educator lays out 6 steps to solving that pesky teacher recruitment problem.

Thespis Journal respects the coverage of Dayton-area schools, but he can’t help but feel that public education has been reduced to simplistic statistics and rankings.

Bill Ferriter at The Tempered Radical takes on a very interesting question: Should spouses and relatives of teachers be allowed to vote?

Education Notes Online has identified a pattern in NYC: clueless officials who don’t know how to fix the system blame the teachers and close the schools. Re-organize. Rinse. Repeat.

Maria Marien knows that music makes our kids smarter. She’s compelled to ask: If so, why aren’t we committed to providing it?

Batya at Shiloh Musings doesn’t think much of Yuli Tamir’s education reforms in Israel, and she tells you exactly why.

  • The Ever-present Money Issues

Finance is Personal reminds us what student loans are for – and what they aren’t for.

Millionaire Mommy Next Door is worried about an epidemic that plagues even our children: Affluenza.

Dave of Friends of Dave runs some numbers on the cost of school supplies at the household, local and state levels. He should feel lucky, says Staples, but he doesn’t.

Saving Advice delivers a must-read on how to save money buying school supplies. If you’ve already gotten yours, read anyway – there are excellent tips to keep your kids and classrooms well-stocked on the cheap throughout the year. [And, as much as you may not want to hear it, there's always next year.]

  • Technology, Technology, Technology

The Homeschool 2.0 Blog took advantage of two free web applications to help her daughter collect and analyze survey data on all 50 state governments. Was it effective? Well, just ask the Wall Street Journal – they reported on it Thursday!

Sylvia at Generation YES takes some lessons from a recent study about McDonald’s, marketing and children and applies them to technology.

Tom Kim has a well-considered, comprehensive plan for implementing blogs in his English classroom. I like what I see.

  • Teaching and Classroom Management

Right Wing Nation has updated his excellent, easy-to-follow guide on how a teacher can use basic statistics to evaluate curriculum, tests and compare classes.

What It’s Like on the Inside considers grading policy, implementing student/teacher contracts and “help” in completing assignments.

30PlusTeacher offers 5 sage tips for classroom teachers looking to avoid clutter.

dy/dan shares a quick, easy and cheap way to make gigantic posters for your classroom.

Jose Vilson reviews Gary Rubenstein’s Reluctant Disciplinarian and then adds 10 disciplinary lessons he’s learned.

Ms. T. at Lasting Peace tackles the complexities of childhood belonging, a child’s relationship with parents and how she manages everything in between. She isn’t comfortable with how her CIs are handling the kids, but I have a feeling she’ll be the last to lose hope.

  • The Electives in That Liberal Arts Degree

Chanman had to dust off his anti-aircraft guns to deal with a helicopter parent attack on Buckhorn Road. She escaped this time, but he’s not too worried if she comes back.

Joanne Jacobs is skeptical about Harvard Business Online’s answer to the question, “Is College Necessary?”

Eric of Secondhand Thoughts is a retired soldier, full-time student and future history teacher. He tells us why he loves history and why he wants to teach it.

The Brain Fitness Blog offers up 10 Habits of Highly Effective Brains. I have a feeling we can all use these tips.

Judy at Consent of the Governed weighs in on the prosecution of two hardcore criminals – or relatively normal 7th graders with, well, 7th grade bad judgment, depending on how you look at it.

And, finally, Matthew K. Tabor reviews edublogger John Pearson’s literary debut, Learn Me Good.

Not enough? Thirsty for more? Feel free to sate those desires in the Carnival of Education Archives.

And a quick note regarding next week’s Carnival:

Next week’s carnival will return to home at The Education Wonks. You can email your posts by 11:00 PM (EDST) to owlshome [at] earthlink [dot] com or you can use this handy submission form.

It’s been a pleasure handling this week’s Carnival. Any thoughts, suggestions, criticism or errors/omissions? Just send an e-mail to and let me know.

16 Responses to “Welcome to The 134th Carnival of Education”

  1. Darmok says:

    Just a clarification: FOIL is used to multiply binomials, not for factoring (that’d be the opposite operation).

  2. Matthew says:


    Noted – embarrassing correction made! Thanks for pointing that out before 10 billion people saw it and shook their heads in disgust.

    And on that note, I do believe it’s time to sleep. Mixing up factoring and expansion doesn’t bode well for getting more work done.

  3. Judy Aron says:

    Beautifully done carnival! Thanks for hosting!

  4. Denise says:

    Very well done! Your organization is simple, but effective, and I think the white space between sections makes a big difference. This is the first ed carnival in a long time that hasn’t left me feeling overwhelmed at the number of posts to read.

  5. Frumteacher says:

    What a great read for the first weekend of the new schoolyear! I must say that I really appreciated your e-mails, both for reconfirmation and for announcing the new carnival. Thanks!

  6. Tom Kim says:

    Great job with the carnival! It was really easy to browse through all these great posts.

  7. Maria Marien says:

    Very well organized! Congratulations for a job well done. Cheers to education!

  8. Jacque Dixon says:

    Great Carnival! Thanks for including my post! This was very nicely put together. I am going to post it on our Carnivals and Contests blog, if you don’t mind.

  9. NYC Educator says:

    Great job. Thoughtful, clever and interesting presentation.

    Thanks for including me.

  10. myrightword says:

    Wow, some job. I’m impressed. Thanks for including me.

  11. Excellent Carnival, Matthew! Thanks for including me, and thanks for reviewing Learn Me Good as well!!!

  12. Amanda Dixon says:

    Nice carnival. Hope you got more hits than Hillary Duff!!
    Thanks for adding me in. Glad you liked my list too.
    Great job!!
    As Always,

  13. Thanks for including my post! I’ve linked back here in The Million Dollar Blog Carnival Roundup (August 31, 2007 Edition) at:

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