By Joe Dempsey | Sunday, January 18, 2015
Some days, you just get lucky.
A day or two ago, I made a swing by Saracen Lake here in Pine Bluff, and it looked like a major “Shoveler” convention was well under way. The best corner of the lake was swarming with them. More properly known as the Northern Shoveler, this is a pretty duck — the males with a green head, black bill, bright orange feet with black, tan and white wing and tail feathers accented by some rusty feathers on the side. These dudes look like high-end aquatic sport models.
There's Time to Teach:
Making Poetry Sing with R.E.M.
By P. L. Thomas | Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Writer, teacher and editor P. L. Thomas
of Furman University tells us why and how song lyrics and music videos by the alternative rock group R.E.M. can help students learn to read and appreciate poetry and develop a lasting love of reading and language. Traditional education often has a way of ruining poetry, but Professor Thomas through his practical classroom techniques shows teachers how to rejuvenate the joy and power of purposeful language. There's time to teach, he writes, and the entry point into teaching and studying poetry is music. Once inside, the journey can often lead to rich and complex experiences with language.
No Birds. No Butterflies.
By Ebenezer Baldwin Bowles | Monday, October 13, 2014
Anxieties at the Limestone Banquet Tables:
The birds aren't feeding at their banquet rocks outside my study windows. They shall alight soon, the birds: the hungry cardinals, chickadees, turtle doves, sparrows, jays, wrens, and other species I'm too droopy to identify. What if, I wonder…. What if one sunny autumn afternoon the birds never arrived to dine? What if the butterflies didn't float from the heavens to sip sweet nectar from the marigold, the dianthus, the lantana, and the daisy? What if these flying creatures never returned?
Dr. Roca Presents Ideas on Teaching Heritage Speakers of Spanish.
By Freddie A. Bowles | Wednesday, September 17, 2014
I love languages — plain and simple.
I love the sounds, the ability to communicate with someone who has a different world view, and the challenge of decoding a complex system of sounds and patterns that mean something in an entirely new way. Living in northwest Arkansas, I have the opportunity to practice a number of languages, but most of all, I have an obligation to keep my language learning current in order to share the knowledge with my future teachers in the MAT program.
Writing a Bio Poem
In the Target Language:
The 2014 Poems.
By Freddie Bowles | Thursday, July 24, 2014
We are pleased to announce the publication
of four new Bio Poems written by students in the Special Methods of Instruction in Foreign Languages 2014-2015 cohort in the Master of Arts in Teaching Program at the University of Arkansas. The Bio Poem assignment serves many purposes. For in-service teachers, it provides biographical information about the student and information about the student’s proficiency in the target language — information useful for all of Danielson’s domains. Students can share their poems to establish a sense of community in the classroom. They can peer-edit each other’s poems for an instructional task. And they can publish them to share with parents and community.
A Shadow and Type.
By Ebenezer Baldwin Bowles | Wednesday, June 25, 2014
To the dreamy wayfarer,
at walk along a familiar garden path in the dark of a summer night, each step is lifted into space as an act of faith. The walker knows through experience the ground ahead and believes the earth will be there to support his feet, which are bound downward by gravity and must by necessity push off into the void.
Bridging the Opportunity Gap
At the 2014 Multiculturalism
And Social Justice Symposium.
A Planet Gnosis New Release | Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Award-winning author H. Richard Milner IV
will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Multiculturalism and Social Justice Symposium scheduled for June 23-24 at the University of Arkansas. Professor Milner, the Helen Faison Professor of Urban Education at the University of Pittsburgh, received praise for his book, Start Where You Are But Don’t Stay There: Understanding Diversity, Opportunity Gaps, and Teaching in Today’s Classrooms, published in 2010 by Harvard Education Press. The symposium is sponsored by the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education and Health Professions.
Dispatches from Peru and Sweden
Offer Insights into Language Teaching.
Special to Planet Gnosis | Wednesday, April 30, 2014
Isela Mercado-Ulloa and Susan Moreno,
Spanish language interns in the University of Arkansas Master of Arts in Teaching program (MAT), are finishing their internships in lands afar. Isela is hosted by the University School of Education in Jönköping, Sweden, but teaches at the Erik Dahlbergsgymnasiet, a municipal high school with approximately 1380 students. Susan teaches at the Peruvian North American Abraham Lincoln School in Lima, Peru, founded in 1950 as a cooperative of 103 families in a house in the San Isidro district. Both students have sent dispatches about their experiences for Planet Gnosis. We invite you to have a look.
Advancing Teacher Education
Is Not a Private Affair.
By Freddie Bowles | Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Talk Back, Push Back, Hold On....
When the Association of Teacher Educators met recently in St Louis, the hot topic focused on positive solutions for a profession under coordinated attack by private interests. This conference report by Freddie Bowles includes descriptions of talks by Dr. Marilyn Cochran-Smith, Dr. Diana Hess, and National Teacher of the Year Jeff Charbonneau. It also addresses the propagandists of reform and their false images of public school failure, which are cynically designed to promote the privatization of public education and turn America's schools into profit centers for corporate capitalism.
Bird of the Reedy Margins.
By Andrew Hardacre | Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Our study of the Baillon's Crake
delves into the taxonomy, habitat, and lore of this remarkable species. John Gould's The Birds of Europe and F. O. Morris' A History of British Birds provide the historical foundation of an in-depth analysis of the several taxonomic and name changes foisted on the species over the years. We also visit Hong Kong Park to see a beautiful human-made pond that provides a refreshing urban oasis for the occasional straggler crake. The first winter female of our study was photographed in Long Valley Hong Kong last winter. Take a look!
Frosted Fading Sacred Lotus.
By Stephen Gingold | Wednesday, December 4, 2013
I've visited the lotus pond
in our town countless times over the years and, like many, have been drawn mostly to the rich, deep pink of the blooms as they open during the late summer months. Come October when the warm season ends, the leaves of the lotus fade quickly into a sere brown paper….
But, if you time it right….
A Day among the Fringe Scholars.
By Ron Fritze | Monday, June 17, 2013
After a day with the fringe scholars
at the Ancient Mysteries International Spring Conference, Ron Fritze is left wondering, "Why?" The answers are "legion, for we are many," and add to our understanding of pseudo-history and pseudoscience. Step inside and hear Stephen Knapp's take on ancient Vedic culture, Frank Joseph's ideas about Lemuria, Gary David's notions about the Orion Zone in the desert Southwest, Wayne May's speculations about ancient Mormons, and fringe superstar Michael Cremo's thoughts about forbidden archaeology.
I Got the Writin' Blues.
By Will Sewell | Wednesday, March 6, 2013
With its emphasis on relating
blues music can be the perfect vehicle to inspire writing for the adolescent experiencing the joys and heartbreaks of growing up. "I Got the Writin' Blues," a unit of three lessons, introduces students to the blues genre through the wit of Conan O'Brien and the lyrics of bluesman Danny Chicago, and then leads them through the process of writing a blues song. For the classroom teacher with an eye toward innovation and the development of new lessons, "I Got the Writin' Blues" also provides good seed for the study of poetry and cultural history.