I’ve been asked to write my opinions about a number of pedagogical matters, fifteen pages max. I’m down to twenty-seven. They should’ve just asked me to give my opinion in person, I would’ve just shrugged and said, “Ah… you know.” But no, they asked me to write, and to write about matters I’m angry about. How the hell did I get to twenty-seven pages?

I just flashed back to first grade… my reading group was assigned to read the first half of a particular short story. I read the whole thing, and blurted out the ending without thinking (it had something to do with kids thinking a house was haunted; it was actually a bird–oops, ruined it again). Miss Tammany gave me a look that I have no doubt mimicked many a time in my career, and resignedly banished me from the reading area. @#^$*.

Now I’m flashing back to post-graduate Clemson life… coming home from work, my goofy Muppetish roommate and his pals watching a movie. I ask what movie, they answer Event Horizon. Without thinking, I asked, “Is that the one where the ship goes to hell?” The collective groan was so awesome it washed away any guilt I felt over having ruined the ending.

Not necessarily a logical thought process, but I got less than two hours of sleep last night. Cut me some slack. I’ll post parts of my pedagogical rant when I finish it.


  1. You never gave me a straight answer on WHY you became a teacher in the first place. Not that I’m complaining, I only had you for a semester and you’ve probably been one of my most influential and favorite teachers, just that I don’t see why you bother.


  2. The topic that raised my ire was accountability (who should be held accountable in public education, how it should be measured or evaluated, etc.). The files are on my work computer so I’ll have to wait until getting back to work before posting my response, which was pretty tame.


  3. Use the “Garamond” font, it’s the smallest one I know of and it helped get my 17 page paper back down to 15 pages. You can also change the spacing and size of the punctuation marks and letters if you’re still over the page count. Highlight what you want to change, right click, “font,” “character spacing.”

    And where on the scale of education-tameness?
    Kindergartner -> Arne Duncan -> Randi Weingarden -> Michelle Rhee?


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