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  1. Scottsboro Boys Rally Poster
  2. Jim Crow Laws Song
  3. Letter Sent at the Advent of Segregation
  4. Editorial About the Spread of Jim Crowism
  5. 1920 Article About Self Segregation
  6. WPA Work Program (New Deal)
  7. Laughing on the Street
  8. Family Singing on a Sunday
  9. Old Monroe Courthouse - Interior
  10. Old Monroe Courthouse - Exterior

Above are the primary documents and images I have collected to use during the teaching of To Kill a Mockingbird. This is one of my all-time favorite novels to teach and I love going beyond the page in our discussions.  In my pursuit of primary documents I also found this wonderful resource from the New York Times (note: some of the links are old so you have to do a second search in the new Learning Network blog format) that has a lot of information attached to it.  

Just Give him the whale

Anonymous asked: Would you discourage a current junior in high school from becoming a teacher? Or do you feel the benefits outweigh the negatives for a person who would like to teach?



I would discourage everyone from becoming a teacher. 

NO WAIT!! Hear me out… this job is thankless. No, really. The money is obviously not there, and I’m not even talking about lavish trips or even a trip down to the movie theater, I mean you will literally be living from paycheck to paycheck, if that. The educational system itself is ruthless and at this point probably even more savage than politics. The one thing that makes it all worthwhile is seeing your students succeed… but that won’t happen every day, every week, or every month. If they do though…. it’ll probably be years down the road and you may or may not know about it. Are there beautiful moments in the classroom? Absolutely. Do I enjoy teaching? Yes. Would I break my back for my students? I do. Every day. Even when they cuss me out, when they talk over me, when they sleep through class, when they just… won’t. But I would NEVER, EVER, EVER encourage anyone to be a teacher. 

Because the kind of person that has the strength, conviction, ambition, intellect, and passion needed to be a teacher…a great teacher… CANNOT be the kind of person that needs encouragement to do the job. It needs to be the kind of person that is ridiculously INSANE and maniacally ANGERED about the current state of our youth that they will do whatever is necessary to change their life…. despite people telling them to NEVER, EVER, EVER be a  teacher. 

Perfection. A must-read.








22 more days.

25 and a half


I thought it’s 27, Stardust…

22 over here!

Um we don’t know when we are done.

10 Poverty Myths, Busted | Mother Jones



1. Single moms are the problem. Only 9 percent of low-income, urban moms have been single throughout their child’s first five years. Thirty-five percent were married to, or in a relationship with, the child’s father for that entire time.

2. Absent dads are the problem. Sixty percent of low-income dads see at least one of their children daily. Another 16 percent see their children weekly.

3. Black dads are the problem. Among men who don’t live with their children, black fathers are more likely than white or Hispanic dads to have a daily presence in their kids’ lives.

4. Poor people are lazy. In 2004, there was at least one adult with a job in 60 percent of families on food stamps that had both kids and a nondisabled, working-age adult.

5. If you’re not officially poor, you’re doing okay. The federal poverty line for a family of two parents and two children in 2012 was $23,283. Basic needs cost at least twice that in 615 of America’s cities and regions.

6. Go to college, get out of poverty. In 2012, about 1.1 million people who made less than $25,000 a year, worked full time, and were heads of household had a bachelor’s degree.

7. We’re winning the war on poverty. The number of households with children living on less than $2 a day per person has grown 160 percent since 1996, to 1.65 million families in 2011.

8. The days of old ladies eating cat food are over. The share of elderly single women living in extreme poverty jumped 31 percent from 2011 to 2012.

9. The homeless are drunk street people. One in 45 kids in the United States experiences homelessness each year. In New York City alone, 22,000 children are homeless.

10. Handouts are bankrupting us. In 2012, total welfare funding was 0.47 percent of the federal budget.

Oh my word…this one is obscene. 7. We’re winning the war on poverty. The number of households with children living on less than $2 a day per person has grown 160 percent since 1996, to 1.65 million families in 2011.

My future husband.

(Source: stupidfuckingquestions, via edukaition)



So, I tend to be very optimistic about things…especially kids. I firmly believe there is good in every kid. The other day I was eating lunch with other special ed teachers who were just railing on kids. They brought up this one kid, and I smiled and said,

“Oh, I love him. He is such a good kid.”

Crickets around the table. Until one replied,

“You sound like the director every kid is good blah blah. You know you don’t have to believe that. Some kids aren’t good.”

It was awful. I couldn’t even reply. I was being judged for believing in kids. I can’t imagine being in this profession and not believing there is good in kids. It was so disheartening to hear my colleagues say that. I worry so much for the kids when I am gone. If their advocates don’t believe in them…who will?


All sorts of dramz

They extended the school year already, but then today said maybe not. Yikes. We would have to be there the other day anyways, so we would rather have kids. They would add 5 minutes on both ends of the day to account for the minutes. Adding 1 minute of instruction is not the same as 4 days of instruction .

Guess What?


I’m no professional artist, or scientist, and heck even saying I’m a professional teacher would be debatable after some of the answers my students put down on tests…. But I want students to seriously learn and be seriously scientifically literate! So I did my part and made some things to help!



The best Syracuse journalist, Sean Kirst, teamed up with a local historical society and found the woman who was Eric Carle’s friend more than 82 years ago, and inspired his new book, FRIENDS.

She is alive and well and they might be able to meet up again soon. Read the story for a joy-filled start to your week!!

photo credit: Michael Greenlar,