Archive for BillFerriter SmartBlogs

So I have a bit of a confession to make: I’m addicted to reality television. While I can’t quote a “Seinfeld” episode or a Monty Python movie to save my life — and while I’ve never seen “Caddyshack,” “Airplane” or half the “Star Wars” trilogies — I have spent hundreds of hours watching “Ax Men,” “Swamp People,” “Flying Wild Alaska,” “Pawn Stars,” “Deadliest Catch,” “Dance Moms,” “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Ice Road Truckers.”

A part of me knows that should be embarrassing to admit.[…] Continue Reading »

I got an interesting phone call from my mom the other day. Like most of America, she has been swept up in the stories of the cheating scandal in the Atlanta Public Schools. “How could teachers do that kind of thing?” she asked. “It’s shameful.”

The answer to her question is actually pretty simple: Teachers cheat on standardized tests because the stakes are ridiculously high.[…] Continue Reading »

Poking through my Twitterstream the other day, I stumbled across a great quote from digital thought leader Marc Prensky. He wrote: “Technology gives kids power that people their age have never had. Let’s help them use it wisely.”

That’s an incredibly important point, isn’t it? The fact of the matter is that the kids sitting in your classroom — whether they are six or sixteen — don’t have to sit on life’s sidelines waiting until they grow up in order to make a difference in the world around them.[…] Continue Reading »

Ready for a quirky admission: I read Gawker, the slightly tawdry, pseudo-news site with the subtitle, “Today’s Gossip is Tomorrow’s News,” almost every night.

I know. I know. Gawker is nothing more than reality TV for the Web, and I’m probably frying brain cells every time that I waste my time there.

But a few weeks back, I stumbled across an article that actually has me thinking about our nation’s efforts to recruit and retain teachers.[…] Continue Reading »

A colleague who knows that Twitter is my favorite social space stuck her head in my room the other day with a complaint. “Bill, Twitter’s not working for me. No one ever replies to any of my questions. What’s the point of posting if no one is ever listening?”

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

Anyone who has taken the digital leap into the Twitterstream has felt lost and unloved at some point in their early work to use the short messaging service as a learning tool.[…] Continue Reading »