Saturday, October 30, 2004

"Motivating High School Students in Biology and Chemistry with Pharmacology"

Reserve your seat for a full-Day Workshop at the NCSTA Conference on
Friday, November 12, 2004:

The Pharmacology Education Partnership (PEP) Presents
"Motivating High School Students in Biology and Chemistry with Pharmacology"

A Full-Day Workshop
NCSTA Professional Development Institute
Koury Convention Center
Greensboro, North Carolina
November 12, 2004
9 am - 4 pm

The Pharmacology Education Partnership (PEP) provides teachers with tools to teach biology and chemistry using topics (e.g. the chemistry and biology of cocaine, nicotine, and steroids) that captivate high school students. In the short course, teachers will learn about the exciting world of Pharmacology and will be introduced to the PEP teaching modules such as, "Acids, Bases, and Cocaine Addicts"; "Military Pharmacology: It takes Nerves"; and "Steroids and Athletes: Genes Work Overtime!" Participants will receive instruction on using the interactive PEP website and how to integrate PEP modules into their own teaching.

The Pharmacology Education Partnership has just finished a two-year national research study in which ~10,000 students were tested after using the PEP modules. Preliminary research from a pilot study
indicates the more modules used by teachers, the better the students performed on a multiple choice test of basic biology and chemistry principles, compared to the standard curricula.

To reserve a space for the workshop and COMPLIMENTARY lunch at the NCSTA
Institute in Greensboro, please email:
by November 5, 2004.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Textbook Caravan Hits the Road

Textbook Caravan Hits the Road - The North Carolina Textbook Caravan will hold presentations and have samples for K-5, 6-8, and 9-12 Science; Foreign Language 6-12; English Language Development, (ESL) K-12; and Agricultural Education 7-12 at the following eight regional sites:
Nov. 1, Asheville;
Nov. 2, Boone;
Nov. 3, Winston-Salem;
Nov. 4, Durham;
Nov. 8, Greensboro;
Nov. 9, Fayetteville;
Nov. 10, Wilmington; and
Nov. 11, New Bern.
Schools are encouraged to organize teams of teachers to attend. There is no charge for registration. For additional information call Wandra Polk, Instructional Services, DPI, 919/807-3816, or by email,

New No Child Left Behind Flexibility: Highly Qualified Teachers

"Under No Child Left Behind, our nation made a commitment to ensuring that every student has a great teacher. These new policies will help us keep that promise so that every child can reach his or her potential."
-U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige

States are now preparing to meet the 2005-06 deadline for ensuring all of their teachers are highly qualified. Ahead of that deadline, the Department is providing three new areas of flexibility for teachers to demonstrate that they are highly qualified. This flexibility will benefit teachers, local and state administrators, and most importantly--students.
New No Child Left Behind Flexibility: Highly Qualified Teachers

Cyber-Cheating by Mary Ellen Flannery

Years ago, I was called to the media center and was surprised to learn that one of my students had turned in a research paper he had just printed out. I had to hold my breathe to keep from laughing in the students face because he had not even removed the URL printed on the bottom of the suspect document. After a lengthy lecture from the media specialist, and a phone call to the principal, the bottom line was the student earned a zero and was referred to the office for violation of copyright policies. Now, that student owns half the county and makes more before he finishes a hot Krispy-Cream doughnut than I will make the rest of working life. Our students today are even more sly and crafty. A lightening quick text message and deliver the correct answers for all the multiple-choice questions on a final exam that counts one-fifth of the year's grade. High stakes testing requires high tech monitoring. Does your school offer technology training to combat this or are you like most-- still got your head in the sand. Might be time to assess this issue on our campuses.

NEA: NEA Today November 2004

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

HP Tattoos: Personalize Your iPod with Student Art

Want a great new project? Try this idea: Poll your students and determine first if they have an iPod or knows anyone with one. This could be an idea for a special gift. Put a special person on your wiped, or even one of your scanned sketches anything that can be made into a digital file can be used to create your HP Tattoo. Make sure you've got the tattoo supplies and then just follow these steps. In my class, I used the template and had my students design a iPod tattoo for my iPod using what they were learning in class. I will post some examples soon.

HP Tattoos: Personalize Your iPod

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

NCLB Burn-out Blues

Da Dhan Da Da..Got those NCLB Bluuuues
Da Dhan Da Da..SACS plaque on the wall,
Da Dhan Da Da...AYP met and not a call,
Da Dhan Da Da...No Time to teach at All

I Got dim NCLB BlUUUES....
Vote Kerry and Edwards you all.....

Monday, October 25, 2004

Meeting the Needs of All Students

It has long be a best practice to involve students in project based learning. A three-year 1997 study ( To view this study, you must be a registered user on the Edweek site. Registration is free.) of two British secondary schools -- one that used open-ended projects and one that used more traditional, direct instruction -- found striking differences in understanding and standardized achievement data in mathematics. The study by Jo Boaler, now associate professor of education at Stanford University, found that students at the project-based school did better than those at the more traditional school both on math problems requiring analytical or conceptual thought and on those considered rote, that is, those requiring memory of a rule or formula. Three times as many students at the project-based school received the top grade achievable on the national examination in math. Several other studies support this pedigogy. This week, I am trying to have my students think about how they can prepare a three minute radio show to post here on The EduBlog. I have been learning about Podcasting and hopefully, I will be able to use a little xml magic to podcast their "lessons". Each of my student will be picking a topic from a list of science objectives. They will then research the topic and prepare their story/promo. I will be out until mid-week, and our school has a 1/2 day Professional Development on Wednesday. Therefore, it may be next week before they post their intial podcasts. In the mean time, I plan to test this feature. Check back tomorrow for my hopefully my first podcast.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Service Learning

Originally uploaded by The Blake Slate.
This is a photo showing the back of our school. Students and teachers designated a day in October to restraw our azalea beds. We removed weeds and also planted several beds of pansies to add color. Students practiced good character traits such as responsibility and respect.