The seminar.

To recap: Turns out that someone at the district office was looking at our AP United States History pass rates and thought it might be a good idea if we could talk to some of the newer teachers… Read More

“Good Economics.”

A few days ago I received an e-mail from a former student who’s gone on to major in economics. Hopefully said student won’t mind that I’ve published my response online. [Parts of the original message have been edited… Read More


This morning I received an e-mail from my principal. It was short, sweet, and to the point: go see him because he had an “opportunity” for me. I didn’t have a chance to go see him until lunch,… Read More

The new year…

…begins Monday. The good: Paycheck on Friday. Paperwork’s ready to go, plans are laid out. The new room is bigger than the old one. More windows. More sunlight. It’s as decorated as it’s going to be all year… Read More

A pack of godless communists.

A few days ago, I gave my AP Government students one of my favorite essay prompts: If you had to remove one of the following protections of civil liberties from the Constitution, which would it be and why?… Read More

This is a job for…

This past Monday, I stayed after school for a meeting of the creative writing club I sponsor, except that apparently there was no meeting. One girl showed up. I told her to have a seat and we’d wait,… Read More

“Vacation” thus far.

Last week I attended a four-day Advanced Placement Achievement Institute (also known as a “seminar”) that was facilitated (“done”) by the College Board (“the SAT and AP guys”). Attendance was not mandatory, but I figured that a little… Read More

A teacher triumphant.

Today I bumped into a young man who took my microeconomics course long ago, back in aught-four. He mentioned that he was studying accounting in college, was trying to become a CPA, and that he was taking a few… Read More

The last day of school.

This morning I slept in all the way until five after seven. I showered, shaved, and then cursed myself for shaving because I’d forgotten that today was the last day of “post-planning.” The day we’re untouchable because the… Read More

Samples of Student Art #1.

For the “free response” part of their AP exams, students are given green booklets that contain the questions and pink booklets in which to write their answers. They can scribble whatever they wish in either book, but the… Read More

“Only in education,” part two.

Evidently several school districts are moving to the “Minimum 50” grading system, in which the lowest possible grade on an assignment is 50%. The first quote in the article is perhaps the most egregious: “It’s a classic mathematical… Read More

On the occasion of the AP economics exams.

Greg Mankiw, an economics professor, wrote the textbook that I would like to use in my economics courses (sadly, the district has adopted a heavier, more verbose and more confusing text). Mankiw’s text is celebrated enough within the… Read More