April is Poetry Month
The National Council of Teachers of English recently posted a lesson plan on poetry activities. This activity allows students to play with words and letters in an imaginative way. Ogden Nash once wrote, “ Cows are of the bovine ilk. One end moo the other milk.” A great introduction to poetry for kids, Ogden Nash can win over any poetry hater. The site presents alphabet poem examples. To learn more about the universality of poetry appreciation, surf over to http://www.readwritethink.org/files/resources/lesson_images/lesson988/modelalphabetpoems.pdf. For more generalized poetry info click on http://www.readwritethink.org/classroom-resources/lesson-plans/abcs-poetry-988.html. Now you, too, can help kids learn to appreciate poetry. N.B. Poetry serves as the basis of ‘Rap’ music as well. Enjoy. ReadWriteThink is a service provided to English teachers to improve teaching practice.
Another Education Topic: Can You Write Cursive And Other Questions?
An article in Education Week Teaching Now reports that a second grade Facebook request asking for comments on a number of questions such as can you write cursive went viral. Within 2 days, the question garnered more than 300 thousand responses. The teacher’s ultimate goal was to provide data for her students to study graphing. To learn more about the questions and the responses, click on http://blogs.edweek.org/teachers/teaching_now/2017/03/can_you_write_in_cursive_2nd_graders_survey_goes_viral.html. Keyboarding is quick and everyone learns it in schools, but cursive writing broadens options when computers are not handy.
Some Utah Courts Seemingly Hold Rapists in High Regard
According to The Daily Kos, Utah District Court Judge Thomas Low spoke in glowing terms about the prisoner he was about to sentence to prison for sexual abuse and rape. Judge Low said moments before sentencing Keith Vallejo to prison that, “The court has no doubt that Mr. Vallejo is an extraordinarily good man.” The judge made the comment while one of the two victims sat in court watching the proceedings. To read the complete post, click on http://www.dailykos.com/story/2017/04/14/1653236/-During-sentencing-judge-said-he-had-no-doubt-the-convicted-molester-is-extraordinarily-good? So much for judicial impartiality and integrity.
NYC Cops Exhibit Thuggery, Again
Last month several NYPD cops threatened to use Tasers against a group of black youth standing on a public sidewalk near Brooklyn’s Midwood High School. The officers began pushing and shoving and threatening the youths without explaining why the group should disperse. This is the most recent example of police behavior that the New York Civil Liberties Union cited as, “That confirms the all-too-frequent-complaints of NYPD officers abusing their authority to intimidate young people of color.” To read the complete post, visit http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/40171-nypd-officers-threaten-high-school-students-with-taser. It’s hard to sympathize with cops for the real threats they face when they behave in this manner.
Is Criticism of Israel Anti-Semitism?
This is the question that Rebecca Vilkomerson, director of the Jewish Voice for Peace, answers in her book On Antisemetism. The book compares the clear antisemitism of the Alt-Right with supporters of Israeli behavior in the West Bank who claim that criticism of Israel’s behavior amounts to antisemitism. Since the Trump election, Alt-Right supporters of white nationalism have committed acts of vandalism on the Temples and cemeteries of American Jews. According to Vilkomerson, a distinction must be made between criticism of Israeli actions at home and antisemitism in the U.S. To read more about this thought-provoking piece, visit http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/40207-antisemitism-and-support-for-israel-are-not-incompatible-we-must-confront-both. An expanded analysis of this work appears at http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/40224-israeli-government-is-petrified-of-boycott-divestment-and-sanctions-bds-movement. In the second link, the Israeli opposition to the BDS, Boycott, Divest, Sanctions, uses the charge of antisemitism to prevent and forestall any criticism of Israeli treatment of Palestinians in Israeli controlled territory. Given the apparent blank check President Trump has given the Israeli authorities on this issue, the topic seems very relevant.
The Daily Kos posted a hilarious piece listing 12 reasons why cats aren’t Republicans. Dems and Progressives will love this. Conservatives and Republicans not so much. To read visit http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/10/27/1339526/-Why-cats-aren-t-Republican. And so it goes.