Getting More Edumacated

I’m taking two online courses in Educational Technology this semester, both of which go toward some graduate certificate or the other that I’d like to earn in addition to my MA. I probably wouldn’t be detouring into certificate land if there were any classes for my MA available, but there aren’t, so there we are.

Anyway, one of my classes (“Integrating Technology into the Classroom Curriculum,” although I keep trying to say Education instead of Technology) requires that I keep a blog with mandated posts each week. I hemmed and hawed, but ultimately decided that I didn’t want to use my existing edublog for this purpose. It wouldn’t be the end of the world if my anonymity over there got shattered, but I’d like to hang onto it as long as I can.

In conclusion: I’ve set up a dedicated EDTECH blog called Half-Bakered Ideas. (It was just “Kate Baker Thinks About Educational Technology,” but Mom made fun of my inspired title, so I had to get creative.) It isn’t likely to be very interesting, but it should be… uhm… informative? Educational? Technological? Full of… cupcakes?

Feel free to read. And please, forgive me if my posting (and noveling) gets a little sporadic. I’ve never taken online courses before, and I’m not sure what it’s going to do to my mental energy levels.

Excuse me while I pick up my jaw off the floor

I saw this over at Mr. McKnob and watched it during my lunch break. I about died – it’s fantastic, astonishing, and pretty dang funny. I guess this guy is a Delta Airlines pilot, and the video was shot at an air show. He pretends to be a drunken spectator who leaves the stands and gets into a Piper Cub in an effort to – what? Escape security? Be cool? Then he flies it in a series of death-defying stunts – one of the most dangerous of air show routines, in fact, because the entire thing is performed at extremely low altitude. You’ll need to see this:

Unread Books on My Bedside Table

Yeah, I know this probably isn’t very interesting. On the other hand, maybe the books “lying in wait” to be read by a person are more telling than the books actually read! So here you have it: the books I’m not reading while I’m devouring paranormal mysteries and romances. Er, grading and lesson planning and working on Wyrd. Something like that.

  • The Shut-Down Learner: Helping Your Academically Discouraged Child (Selznick)
  • In the Balance: An Alternative History of the Second World War (Turtledove)
  • Blood and Thunder: The Epic Story of Kit Carson and the Conquest of the American West (Sides)
  • Flanagan’s Version (Flanagan)
  • The Conquest of New Spain (Diaz)
  • Personal Fiction Writing (Willis)
  • When Elephants Weep: The Emotional Lives of Animals (Masson)
  • On Being a Teacher (Kozol)
  • The Highly Selective Dictionary for the Extraordinarily Literate (Ehrlich)
  • Caress of Twilight (Hamilton)

So, what’s sitting on your to-read list?

If You’re Bored…

I read the funniest survey-meme ever yesterday, and I copied it and started to complete it, but then I realized that I didn’t have answers for (or the energy to come up with answers for) about half the questions. It’s too good not to share, though. If you’re feeling meme-y, go over to The Blue Door and check out the coolest meme ever. And if you fill it out on your blog, tell me so I can check it out and grin at your responses. 🙂 Maybe my creative juices will fight their way through this fog of Dayquil and wake up!

Ten Questions

What’s the last movie you saw in the theater, and what did you think of it?

Avatar. I agree with the general consensus: worth seeing for being beautiful, not necessarily for the plot. Basically, it’s an PG13-rated Fern Gully seasoned with Medicine Man, The Matrix, and Rambo – maybe with a little Jurassic Park – all with astonishing visuals and lackluster music. And the bad guy looked like President Eisenhower.

Look up. What’s on the wall opposite you?

A bulletin board that needs updating, a whiteboard with the day’s agenda on it (framed with a string of miniature paper lanterns), a cardboard cutout of Dumbledore, and a poster with a Dalmation surrounded by Dalmation-spotted cats reading “In a world full of copycats, be an original!”

How many other living creatures (fauna, not flora) are currently in the room with you?


What magazines do you subscribe to?

Harpers (a free subscription that I regret, believe it or not), periodically the NEA magazine and the English Journal, and sometimes Newsweek. I’m thinking about subscribing to Wired. I still get copies of The Middle School Journal from time to time, too.

What kind of book do you like to read?

Implying, I take it, that there’s only one kind? Right now I’m slacking a bit – I’m on a paranormal mystery/romance kick that has lasted for several months and shows no real signs of letting up. Nothing wrong with that, except that it’s not terribly intellectual of me. I like books with great stories, whether fiction or nonfiction, but more importantly, I like authors with a great voice. I don’t like to read boring things – for me, a book or a movie or a song should be about entertainment, not about work, unless it is for work, in which case I’d better be getting a paycheck or a grade for it. 🙂

What color is your shirt?

I’m wearing an acid-green and hot pink argyle cardigan over a hot pink camisole. Sound loud enough? 🙂

What is your most embarrassing childhood crush?

Oh, this one is easy. Gadget Hackwrench, hands down. Far more embarrassing than Don Karnage. Who, as it turns out, has his own Facebook page. Why am I not surprised?

What websites do you frequent?

Google, Gmail, Google Reader, PowerTeachers, Facebook, Fark, WordPress, MSNBC, Idaho Statesman, Amazon. That’s really about it, actually, if I think about it…

What do you currently wish?

That the school day would hurry up and be over so that I could go to the restroom. How come teachers don’t get bathroom passes?

No one ever does these things unless they’re trying to put off doing something else. What are you currently procrastinating?

Writing the junior final.

It’s very junior high of me, I guess, but I’m TOTALLY tagging people because it gives me something to do other than watch the clock and dream of potties. I’d like Angela, Jenny, Mrs. Chili, Meredith, Jessica, and Sarita to answer these questions.


Okay, so, as it turns out, band trips aren’t the place for writing.

I didn’t write so much as a word. Now I’m home, and inundated with end-of-semester stuff, although that may let up a bit here before too long. Plus, I’m sick – the kind of sick that translates to EXHAUSTION. Makes it hard to feel creative…