Ant Farm, Day 1

One Busy Ant is taking the lead in clearing out the tunnel. The other ants are chowing down on a piece of pear. And it was evening and it was morning, day 1.

Butterflies Then, Ants Now

We set up a new Ant Farm (which took about a month to receive). The ants were a little too live coming out of their testtube when I tried to spill them into the farm, so some of them had to be mashed inside… some survivors are missing body parts.

Implicit Bias Training Crash

The whole school – and possbly the whole DOE – was obligated to take an online course today. Naturally it crashed the website. Here are some different screen shots of error messages.

Butterfly Life Cycle

This was a fun, four-part activity. First the eggs on a leaf (stickers on foam leaf; then making a foam caterpillar of different colors; then twisting a pipe cleaner to make the pupa/cocoon and taping it to a foam twig; then using highlighters to color in in the butterfly. It took exactly 45 minutes, so yeah.

Baby Butterfly!

I bought painted lady caterpillars, to somehow incorporate them into the April=Animals curriculum. They came.

At first they were littles.

Then they ate

and ate

and got big

and bigger,

then cocooned.

I clipped the cocoons to the big mesh butterfly habitat.

Then we waited.

Sometime today, the first butterfly emerged. I feel like a proud papa!

Quick to Judge

I was looking for a science book and found this in the closet: The Elements by Ron Miller

Cover is pretty, right? However, the pages are mostly black and white. The few illustrations there were did intrigue me though:

Well, I am a toothpaste snob, and am currently using Marvis toothpaste. I have never heard of “fluoridine.” Google tells me it is a British brand.

OK. But what about “Black Cat Brand Salt?” I have never heard of it and neither has Google.

Same with the Black Cat baking soda:

and Bettcher’s Best Milk of Magnesia:

I feel like I have stumbled upon an alternate reality of countertop medications, like in any PK Dick novel.

A little research left me with the stunning conclusion: Ron MIller, the author of the textbook, created the illustrations himself, to use as examples for the chemical elements. Crazy, right? So I googled him.

Ron Miller is a superstar writer, illustrator, college professor, consultant, USPS postage stamp designer (!), comic book creator, and much, much more.

So there you have it.

Face Masks for the Fancy

Honeywell-brand face masks, er, Procedure Masks with Earloops, will not only prevent exposure to covid germs, but will also bring your vocabulary up a notch.

Instead of putting on and taking off the face mask, I mean, procedure mask, you don it and doff it. Classy words, if you ask me.

Hello, Alexander Graham Bell?

Nothing like an old school building to discover antique technology.

Feast your eyes on the old and the new, side by side (well, below and above).

These two telephones…what stories that would tell.

This Book is the Property of:

I came across this label in a classroom book the other day. Anyone old enough to remember school textbooks probably remembers these labels affixed to the inside flap:

I remember that we defaced that label wth extreme prejudice, although I cannot recall the exact phrases we invariably used…Maybe something like State: Mental; Province (can’t recall); County: Jail; Parish (can’t recall), etc.

I am curious as to the origin of the label. Why these categories and not others, such as “school number” or “name?

The Scream


Real screaming, real tantrum. Adjust speakers accordingly.

Imagine having to listen to this while you are teaching a class.

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June 2021