Higher EducationPedagogy

I am teaching a class right now that sucks balls.

Hey, at least I didn’t make the mistake of saying it “literally” sucks balls, right? Because that would be weird. But seriously folks. This class is awful, and it’s breaking my heart. It’s an intro to the English major for sophomores, so we cover genres and fields of criticism at the …

Critical ThinkingCultureEducationReligionSecondary Education

High School Assemblies, Rife with Prayers and Other Assorted Woo?

I went to high school approximately two millennia ago, in the 1980s. Back then, I guess we didn’t think kids needed so much inspiring or guiding or straight-scaring or whatever, because I don’t remember anything like the number of all-school assemblies my son now has at his high school, at …

Critical ThinkingHigher EducationReligion

Some Really Crappy Advice at the Chronicle of Higher Education

Do non-religious college administrators suffer a particularly high amount of workplace discrimination? Should they hide their lack of religious affiliation and also ask the same of their spouses/partners? Writing for the advice section of the Chronicle, “Madalyn Dawkins” (NOT HER REAL NAME) says yes. I respond, “ORLY?” The author’s primary …

Critical ThinkingEducationReligionSecondary Education

Newsflash: Art Might Make You Uncomfortable

A few years ago, a textbook I used in freshman composition included a chapter on film studies. The final essay for the unit (and for the course, as it worked out) asked students to choose one of two prompts. I don’t recall the exact questions, but one was about Sydney …

EducationPrimary EducationSecondary Education

Guns in Schools May Mean No Insurance. Oops! Awkward.

Insurance companies are starting to refuse coverage to public school districts that allow teachers to carry guns in class. From USA Today, linked above: A new Kansas law allowing gun owners to carry weapons in public buildings, including schools, has thrust a major Des Moines-based insurer into the national gun …

FeaturedSecondary Education

The Oatmeal’s Running Strip and the Morality of Sport

I am a runner. I have one of those self-congratulatory 13.1 stickers on my car and hope to add a 26.2 sticker later this year. I love running even when I hate it, if that makes sense. So last week, almost everyone I know (it seemed, anyway) either posted this …

Higher EducationReligion

Rise of the “Nones” and Young Secularists on Campus: An Interview with a Secular Student Alliance Chapter President

A recent poll shows that 50% of respondents find the rise in numbers of American “nones”–the new term for people who tick “none” for the religion question of census polls–a troubling trend. However we feel about it, the phenomenon continues, and young people appear to be the driving force. The …

Critical ThinkingPrimary EducationSecondary Education

In Honor of American Independence Day, A Post about How Creepy The Pledge of Allegiance Is. Happy Birthday, America!

I guess I had better start with a disclaimer, though the necessity annoys me: I like America. I mostly like being an American. There are some areas in which we could use an upgrade, no question, but overall I feel fortunate to have been born and raised here. /disclaimer Now …

A shelf full of books.
Primary EducationRequired ReadingsSecondary Education

Required Readings: 16 June 2013

Happy father’s day, to our American readers! There is a theme to today’s RR: the Common Core Standards. CCS is a topic we are going to have to tackle around here sooner or later, my friends. May as well familiarize yourself with the basics: Official Website of the Common Core …

FeaturedReligionSecondary Education

Girl-Type Graduates! Congratulations! Now Go Make Babies Like Proper Lady People!

Did you miss me while I was on holiday? Allow me to make up for my self-indulgent absence by self-indulgently using some vacation slides to illustrate this triumphant return post! To wit, get a load of this guy, Mr. Peter Heck, social studies teacher, “conservative motivational speaker,” and 2 June …