Category Archives: Education

Friday, June 7, 2019 – Do You Ever Wonder?

Friday, June 7, 2019 – Do You Ever Wonder?

Do you ever wonder what the crime lab team would say if they had to come into your house if you had an accident while you were away?

Here’s what I’m thinking they might say upon entering my house.

  • Ooh, PHEW! She has a cat!
  • Not much of a house keeper, was she?
  • Did she have a date or is she just lazy and doesn’t pick her clothes up off of the floor? (I think we all know the answer to this one.)
  • Help, me! I’m stuck in the kitchen. To the floor!
  • Well, she did make her bed!

Stay cool this weekend. In Texas the weekend weather forecasts just post pictures of the hinges of Hell. Then again, God gave the Devil the choice of where to live – Hell or Texas in the summer. Heat index could be 107 degrees.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019 – “An Uncommon Ability to Inspire Men and Lead Them to Exceptional Achievement”

Wednesday, June 05, 2019 – “An Uncommon Ability to Inspire Men and Lead Them to Exceptional Achievement.”

Watch the news and see those WWII soldiers who stormed the Beaches of Normandy. They are now in their 90’s and return to the beaches where many gave the greatest sacrifice. You will see them tear up as they remember that day. They were 18 and 19 years old. They saw their friends and buddys blown away in front of their eyes. They took bullets. They will tell you they were scared, but doing what had to be done.

We owe these brave men our gratitude, our respect and most of all our freedom. He is the story of one.

James Earl Rudder

May 6, 1910–March 23, 1970

The German army considered Pointe du Hoc a perfect spot for defending the coast of France from Allied forces during World War II. From atop its hundred-foot cliffs, German guns could reach both Omaha Beach and Utah Beach. The Germans thought their position was secure. And it was—until June 1944, when Texan James Earl Rudder and his Second Ranger Battalion began to climb those cliffs.

Rudder graduated from Texas A&M University in 1932 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Army Reserves. He taught high school and college and coached football until he was called to active duty in 1941. He trained U.S. Army Rangers for one of D-Day’s most dangerous operations: taking Pointe du Hoc.

During the assault, over half of Rudder’s men were killed or wounded, and Rudder himself was shot in the leg. But the high ground was seized, and the German guns were silenced.

After the war, Rudder continued to take on tough challenges. As president of Texas A&M, he supported optional membership in the Corps of Cadets and helped open the university to women, despite great opposition.

When he died in 1970, Rudder was celebrated for his courageous leadership in both war and peace. An inscription on Rudder Tower, located on the A&M campus, remembers Rudder’s “uncommon ability to inspire men and lead them to exceptional achievement.”

For More about James Earl Rudder

In June 2011, Humanities Texas published an excerpt from Thomas M. Hatfield’s 2011 book Rudder: From Leader to Legend in our monthly e-newsletter. The excerpt details the Second Ranger Battalion’s first night on Pointe du Hoc.

The James Earl Rudder Collection, 1918–2001, is held by Texas A&M University’s Cushing Library. The collection includes materials from Rudder’s time in the service during World War II, clippings from newspapers, posters, magazine issues, memorabilia, and Rudder’s awards.

In recognition of the significance of Rudder’s tenure as president of Texas A&M University, the university erected a sculpture of Rudder in 1993. The statue, which was designed by Lawrence M. Ludtke, was originally located in front of Bizzell Hall, but was moved in 2009 to stand at the south end of Military Walk.

https://www.humanitiestexas.org/programs/tx-originals/list/james-earl-rudder

James Earl Rudder’s Legacy Was Born 75 Years Ago At D-Day

Thursday, May 16, 2019 – All Good Things Must Come to and End

Thursday, May 16, 2019 – All Good Things Must Come to an End

“…Math, science, history unraveling the mystery; it all started with a big bang.”

Tonight we bid a fond farewell to Dr. Cooper, Dr. Hofstader, Dr. Koothrapoli and MR. Wolowitz and all of the other fabulous cast members as The Big Bang Theory has its series finale. It is my favorite program. I hope it ends with a big bang. Thank goodness for syndication.

One of my many favorite episodes is The Shiny Trinket Maneuver. “Ohhh! It’s tiara! Put it on me! Put it on me!”

I am so Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler.

Do you have a favorite episode? If so, sing Soft Kitty.

 

Wednesday, May 8, 2019 – In Honor of Standardized Testing or STARR This Post

Wednesday, May 8, 2019 – In Honor of Standardized Testing or STARR This Post

In honor of standardized tests, let’s do a math word problem.

How much does it cost to score one assessment in one content area in Texas?

Let’s pretend the content area is English Language/Arts, Grade Five.

You will need to know how many fifth graders across Texas took the test. Call somebody at TEA and find an answer you like or Google it and figure a reasonable sum. Or just use 80,000. That is the current number possibly held back this year due to performance. Now that deserves an F-bomb!

Proceeding onward with the number of scorers. Remember, you are only looking at costs for scoring one content area for one grade level. Ready?

At one assessment site, there are two shifts of scorers.

1st shift clocks in at 8:00 am and clocks out at 4:30 pm. This shift makes $11.50 per hour.

2nd shift clocks in at 5:00 pm and clocks out at 10:30 pm. This shift makes $12.50 per hour.

Both shifts receive a non-paid 30-minute lunch and two non-paid 15-minute breaks.

If you are unable to meet your scoring daily and/or weekly quota, you are dismissed. If you miss more than three days during the testing period, you are dismissed.

There are five rooms of scorers, plus a number of supervisors and other ancillary people. Each room has 150 Dell Computers.

A standard scoring period is about six weeks – Monday through Saturday. One is not required to work on Saturdays so factor about 75 scorers for Saturdays. Saturday scorers make $12.50 per hour.

The amount you come up with reflects the amount paid to score one grade level, one content area, for six weeks. You can either show your work or just give an F-bomb to the world of assessment.

For extra credit calculate the costs for other content areas and grade levels being scored.

Keep your voter registration card current!

Wednesday, May 01, 2019 – I Am Afraid

Wednesday, May 01, 2019 – I Am Afraid

I am afraid and here is why. Last week I visited Magnolia High School. Of course, this is not the same facility from which I graduated many years ago.

Near the entrance were six really big photographs of outstanding graduates from MHS. There was Mr. Lester Goodson standing with a group, Mrs. Celeste Graves, riding a camel, Buddy Dial from his Pittsburg Steeler Days, a 1960 graduate whose name I forgot, but in his judge’s robe, Jerry Yelverton, riding a bucking bronco, and Dr. Cecil Groves throwing a shot put.

Congratulations to all of these trailblazers and graduates of Magnolia High School. Thank you to all of the outstanding teachers and coaches we had during those years. I hope we made you proud.

I am not sure how the selections were made, but I have been told “You are next.” Here is why I am afraid. They will use this photograph from my sophomore year at Magnolia High School. If you do, my Mother will come down from Heaven and make you do retakes, just like she made me back in 1965!

 

 

Monday, April 15, 2019 – Pick Seven for Literacy

Monday, April 15, 2019 – Pick Seven for Literacy

Here’s what I’m thinking about last week. Today is a summary of last week. First, I want to thank my friend, Shirley Crooks for challenging me to list the covers of seven of my favorite books. No reviews; no comments – just the covers. Then I challenged seven people to list their seven favorites.

The comments made by various people made me happy. For example, the number of

  • former students and people who said To Kill a Mockingbird was one of their all-time favorites,
  • the number of people who took up the challenge,
  • the people who said they went out and bought a book listed to read or reread it,
  • new books I learned about.

Listed below are titles of the book covers I posted on Facebook. But now I comment. These are a few of the books that I can remember where I was when I laughed out loud and cried softly – sometimes both in the same novel and maybe on the same page.

  1. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee – greatest  novel EVER!
  2. As I Lay Dying – William Faulkner – my favorite author of all time. Every August (As in a Light in August) I read a Faulkner novel.
  3. Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole – a Pulitzer Prize winning novel of New Orleans. Sadly, Mr. Toole took his life before seeing this greatness achieved.
  4. Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston – a must read novel by a strong, Black women. The novel was poorly received initially, partly because it was written by a strong, Black woman in 1937. However, it is now one of the great works African-American and women’s literature.
  5. Looking for Alaska – John Green – every high school teacher should read because we taught them all through their teenage angst and they taught us through ours.
  6. Catcher in the Rye – J. D. Salinger – needs to be read and reread at different stages of life.
  7. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte – Nobody does tragedy better than the Brontes.

As many of those I tagged said, it is difficult to limit your favorites to just seven. In my top seven, there is a theme throughout the list. The theme is the one who does not fit in or is unable to find them self.

With the exception of Catcher in the Rye and Jane Eyre, there is also a theme among the other five. I do love Grit Lit! I love to read about the old South from the antebellum stages to the Depression Era South. Looking for Alaska is a bit of a stretch, but hey Alabama is Alabama.

Those books that almost made it and should be on a must read or reread list:

Gone With the Wind – Margaret Mitchell – do I really need say anything about this book? I was 10 years old the first time I read it. It was also the first time I saw the movie at the Winona Theatre in Tomball, Texas.

Harry Potter Series – J.K. Rowling – Of course, name it after Harry, when the strong, highly intelligent Hermione does all the work. I am so Hermione!

Death Comes for the Archbishop – or anything by Willa Cather. She is one of the reasons New Mexico is enchanted.

Slaughter House Five by Kurt Vonnegut – all of his books, but especially SHF. The first time I read it I found Billy Pilgrim to be a funny, eccentric character. The second time I realized Vonnegut described PTSD long before it was diagnosed.

The Hand Maiden’s Tale – Margaret Atwood. Great social science fiction author.

From non-fiction shelf

Rising Tide – John M. Barry – an account of changing the course of the Mississippi River and the lives that were forgotten. If you have ever been to South Louisiana and traveled along the Mississippi, this is a must read.

Alaska and Texas by James A. Michener – long, heavy book, and always starts with the dinosaurs, but so worth the history the books contain. PS – I also read Poland.

The Devil in the White City – Eric Larson or any novel by him. His books are considered a new genre called hybrid history. This novel details two historical events that intersected in time.

I could go on and on just like all of us bibliophiles , but then I do not have time read. So READ ON! Spread the literacy.

Monday, April 01, 2019 – The Green Final Four

Monday, April 01, 2019 – The Green Final Four

Do you know why you are so tired today? You have just completed at 31 day March.

What a March of madness it was if you are a basketball fan. First on the men’s side of NCAA Division I. I am sure my Alabama buddies are as thrilled about Auburn reaching the final four as I am about Texas Tech reaching it. So let’s go Virginia Cavaliers. Beat the Tiger with the auburn fur. Let’s us remember that I picked Michigan State to win it all. Puffy Spartan! Please do not let me down. And finally, PLEASE anybody but Tech.

Now to the women’s side of NCAA Division I. Does anyone know the words to the Stanford fight song? Tonight Stanford will play the Girls of Muffetry – AKA Notre Dame at 8:00 on ESPN2. I wonder if Muffet will wear the lime green boa around her neck. Did you see those lime green stilettos she had?

Speaking of green colors. Baylor plays Iowa at 6:00 on ESPN2 tonight.

Speaking of even more green colors. The Oregon Ducks will wait for the winner of Baylor and Iowa State. Yesterday, against Mississippi State their uniforms looked like two of the colors in the Crayola Box escaped. It could be a semi-final of various shades of greens and yellows.

And not wearing green. The UConn Huskies will play the winner of Notre Dame and Stanford.

I am not wearing green to watch any of the games. I do not have any green pajamas. Sic ‘Em Bears! And what every the Dancing Tree of Stanford Cardinal (like the color, not the bird) says. Are we for certain really smart people go to Stanford?

If Baylor does not win, I will offer the following quote by one of my favorite, and so articulate heroines, Hermione Granger.

 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 – Poems of Spring

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 – Poems of Spring

Happy first day of spring to us all. To celebrate let’s write some poetic words of the season.

Let us open our books to Chapter One – How to Write a Poem of Spring.

  • When writing a poem of spring, select something that makes the season special.
  • Make it sound old. Use words that no one uses any more in ordinary language. For example, use words like “hark” or “Ye pilgrim.”
  • Always put a “th” after verbs.
  • Make it sound biblical, religious or spiritual. Use words like thee and thou.
  • Make it mysterious. Write about something few people even know what you are writing about and even fewer care.

Here is an example of spring poem utilizing all of the above suggestions.

Oh Ye Pilgrim Baller

Hark! My bracket doth already bursteth

Because I picketh Prairie View A&M,

Hence, I have selecteth the upset

And picketh the Spartans to win!

If you insist on writing about flowers, try this one.

Use Care in Where Thou Butt Doth Go

Doth not sit thou buttocks in bluebonnets

A rattler awaits thy nether region,

Hasten thy run through the fire ants for fun

To celebrate the spring season.

You have the rest of the class time to work on your spring poems.

The picture of Her Cuteness on a rabbit has nothing to do with the post. I just thought it was funny. Yes, that is Papa Ned.

 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 – Monday, Monday. Can’t Trust that Day

Tuesday, March 19, 2019 – Monday, Monday. Can’t Trust that Day

Here’s what I’m thinking about yesterday.

Every party needs a pooper that’s why we invited you, ESPN U Suck! ESPN U Suck!

In case you missed it or do not follow sporting events, ESPNU of the ESPN family released the NCAA Division I Women’s basketball bracket on TV two hours before its scheduled time. The announcement parties on campuses were scheduled for six o’clock central standard time. The announcement on TV was at four. It was like unwrapping your Christmas present to see what it was two hours before it was time and then trying to act surprised during the actual Christmas tree. ESPNU took away the element of surprise.

While this may not seem to be at the top of the world falling apart events, it was disappointing to all teams, coaches and fans. Your premature bracket release meant that teams were denied the opportunity to be with their fans when their team’s names were called. This is special to fans and teams. Teams that have never been to the tournament were denied the opportunity to be recognized.

Because of your blunder, the program at six o’clock was pieced together (and you could tell it was). You never even showed the teams from the Chicago Region where Texas A&M is the number 4 seed. Wait, you seemed to have enough footage of Notre Dame and Muffet McGraw.

I hope the persons responsible received a good ass chewing and perhaps the opportunity to seek employment elsewhere. This was a major SNAFU for women’s’ sports. Party pooper ESPNU! RL, I hope this was not your brother.

In other news I had an appointment to see an orthopedic doctor yesterday for my knee. It, like the rest of me, is 70 years old and falling apart. I am sure you know the feeling.

But while waiting for the doctor I had plenty of time read this sign on the wall.

I found three errors. Maybe the Grammarians will find others.

Even though the sign does seem to suggest I am their only patient, it did not inspire confidence in my experience at the doctor’s office,  Neither did the doctor when he said “orthoscopic surgery is the first step to a knee replacement.” I replied “Not on this knee. Thank you for the cortisone shot. I’ll get back to you. Good-bye.”

Since all things come in threes, I returned home to find a jury summons in my mail box. Monday, Monday. Can’t trust that day.

But today is Tuesday. The sun is shining. So make today a good one.

Peace out.

Friday, March 8, 2019 – International Women’s Day

Friday, March 8, 2019 – International Women’s Day

Here’s to every Bad Ass women on earth!

And especially to the Fighting Texas Aggie Women’s basketball team as the play their first game in the SEC Tournament tonight.

Yell it with me, Tide!  BTHO Auburn

Now, sing along Sisters and celebrate with these two Bad Ass Women!

Aretha Franklin and Anne Lennox