Rep. Lasee: teachers should pack heat

5 10 2006

Wanna bet he calls himself a pro-life pol, except packing heat and shooting folks who seem to deserve it should be considered personal choice? And it’s FOR THE CHILDREN of course . . .
From the Univ. of Wisconsin Badger-Herald:

In the wake of school shootings in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Colorado over the past two weeks, one Wisconsin state representative devised a plan he thinks will help keep children safe.

Rep. Frank Lasee, R-Bellevue, announced legislation Wednesday that would allow teachers, principals and other school officials to carry concealed weapons on school property.


“This is too important to leave our children in danger,” Lasee said in an interview, calling it another useful tool to help keep Wisconsin students safe.

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Ban the Book-Burning Book for Banned Books Week?!*

5 10 2006

More bad news from Banned Books Week:
Irony, thy name is Unthinking and Ignorant Parent . . . Scott, here’s a dad (and mom) who need to be disengaged, if not from their own child’s education, then certainly from “public education!”

A Caney Creek High School dad is fired up because the Conroe Independent School District uses the book “Fahrenheit 451” as classroom reading material.

Alton Verm, of Conroe, objects to the language and content in the book. His 15-year-old daughter Diana, a CCHS sophomore, came to him Sept. 21 with her reservations about reading the book because of its language.
“The book had a bunch of very bad language in it,” Diana Verm said. “It shouldn’t be in there because it’s offending people. … If they can’t find a book that uses clean words, they shouldn’t have a book at all.”

Hmmm, maybe if we piped in a clean smell while they look at dirty words in books, parents would like it better?Or would the opposite work better? Cognitive science is so interesting to those of us who think . . .

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Evolution and ‘Pod People’

5 10 2006

I don’t do podcasts (yet) but I might have to start — both as personal entertainment AND as education research. Will podcasts turn our kids into “pod people?” A stretch perhaps, but not so far-fetched as Darwin’s Radio, which wasn’t that far-fetched itself when you think about it.

Darwin's Radio book cover

If culture changes like the Internet can actually change individual brains, those changes will in turn change institutions and obsolesce the ones it can’t –this morning I heard NPR guests discussing the extreme need for institutional change by Congress, the Supreme Court, and our whole system of governance (presumably schools too, hey! See if you can check it out on a podcast.) As our population hits 300 million this month, each Senator represents 3 million of us. How well represented does that make you feel as an individual? No WONDER government institutions are foundering and as individuals, we’re mad as hell, not gonna take it any more. Mucho maladaptations that can’t be helped just by changing the color scheme of the decor from red to blue, or back again . . .

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Mary Poppins was an Artist?

5 10 2006

Seen browsing Dan Pink’s page just now:

Mary Poppins meets Mary Cassatt

tn_sittersinthecity_74758.jpg Iconoculture discovers yet another Conceptual Age job: The high concept baby sitter. Sitters in the City, a New York venture, supplies actors, painters, and dancers to care for your kid.

Defining Disgust

5 10 2006

And now for something completely different: What makes foods disgusting?

So I’m designing a study in my head to parse disgust factors in SCHOOL. Has anyone already nailed this down? – there’s my homework.

Also thinking about disgust in politics other than education and family politics, if there’s any such thing. Which creepy Congressman disgusts us more, and why, on a precise 12-point scale?

(Hopefully not including smell as this study does!)

If you don’t follow the link too close to mealtime, I predict Cognitive Daily’s discussion will not disgust . . .

Blog-vangelism Saves Minds

5 10 2006

Think our national choir of schoolfolk will start singing from this hymnal?

“The new Internet isn’t about technology anymore . . .it’s about your imagination,” Richardson said, “about thinking, quite literally, ‘out of the box’ of the traditional classroom.”

. . .A self-confessed “blogvangelist,” Richardson is focused on converting teachers and administrators to his viewpoint. He believes the Internet and the right software tools will liberate students from the anachronistic traditional classroom. They’ll then become self-motivated learners and creators, driven by their own passions.

“Right-brainers are going to rule the flat, wired world,” he told the educators, paraphrasing the subtitle to Daniel Pink’s best-selling book A Whole New Mind. “Kids will become designers, or

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