Monthly Archives: October 2012

Deep Questions about the Election

Deep Questions about the Election


How come we choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America? ~Author Unknown
Do you ever get the feeling that the only reason we have elections is to find out if the polls were right? ~Robert Orben


To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? That is the question…

Shocking! Vaccinated Monkeys Develop Autism

As a principal and teacher, there were many times that I worked with children who were identified as autistic.  I have teamed with teachers to develop plans to assist and support autistic children.  But a question that continually is asked is, “Have you noticed an increasing number of children who have autism?” In that same conversation, another question is, “Are there more children on the autistic spectrum due to our increased awareness and identification in the health and education field?”   What do you think?

While waiting in the doctor’s office, I came upon this article in a medical journal magazine.  Instantly, I thought back to all the families that I worked with to meet the needs of their children.  I also thought about my own children and my choice to vaccinate or not vaccinate my child.  In the following article I bolded  the author’s points that I did find thought-provoking.

By Modernteacher27

Vaccinated Monkeys Develop Autism

October 8, 2012 by Ethan Huff

Medical authorities have long claimed that vaccines play absolutely no role in the development of childhood autism. But if what they claim is true, why do some of the most popular vaccines that are commonly administered to children cause autism in animal primates? Many people are asking this question after a recent study conducted by scientists at the University of Pittsburgh (UP) in Pennsylvania found that infant monkeys given standard doses of childhood vaccines as part of the new research developed autism symptoms.

For their investigation, Laura Hewitson and her colleagues at UP conducted the type of proper safety research on typical childhood vaccination schedules that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) should have conducted, but never has. What her team discovered was groundbreaking, as it completely shatters the mainstream myth that vaccines are safe and pose no risk of autism.

Presented at the International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR) in London, England, the findings revealed that young macaque monkeys given the typical vaccination schedule endorsed by the CDC since the 1990s, and in appropriate doses for the monkeys’ sizes and ages, tended to develop autism symptoms. Their unvaccinated counterparts, on the other hand, developed no such symptoms, which supports a strong connection between vaccines and autism spectrum disorders.

Included in the mix were several vaccines containing the toxic additive Thimerosal, a mercury-based compound that has been phased out of some vaccines, but is still present in batch-size influenza vaccines and a few others. Also administered was the controversial measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine, which has been linked time and time again to causing autism and various other serious, and often irreversible, health problems in children.

“This research underscores the critical need for more investigation into immunizations, mercury, and the alterations seen in autistic children,” said Lyn Redwood, director of SafeMinds, a public safety group working to expose the truth about vaccines and autism. “SafeMinds is calling for large scale, unbiased studies that look at autism medical conditions and the effects of vaccines given as a regimen.”

Vaccine oversight needs to be taken from CDC and given to independent agency, says vaccine safety advocate

Adding to the sentiment, Theresa Wrangham, president of SafeMinds called out the CDC for failing to require proper safety studies of its recommended vaccination schedules. Unlike all other drugs, which must at least undergo a basic round of safety testing prior to approval and recommendation, vaccinations and vaccine schedules in particular do not have to be proven safe or effective before hitting the market.

“The full implications of this primate study await publication of the research in a scientific journal,” said Wrangham. “But we can say that it demonstrates how the CDC evaded their responsibility to investigate vaccine safety questions. Vaccine safety oversight should be removed from the CDC and given to an independent agency.”

Be sure to read this thorough analysis of the study by Catherine J. Frompovich of

For more information:

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Cartoons Put To Good Use

I don’t know about you, but between phone calls and television commercials, I have seen my quota in media with the upcoming election.  How can we use this important event to assist our children in developing higher level thinking skills for their future as citizens, without bringing our own views and opinions into place in the classroom?  The following is an article about the use and creation of (political)cartoons in the classroom to develop thinking and creativity. 

Political Cartoons- A Teaching Strategy

Bob, an eighth grade student, loves art—so much so that he sometimes gets in trouble for doodling in class. His mom may not be too happy about that. But she is happy that his teacher was able to help him put his interests in drawing to good use by taking part in a project on political cartoons that was online and in the classroom. In assessments given to students, questions will include document based-questions—otherwise known as DBQs—that require students to analyze and synthesize primary source documents, like political cartoons.

Political cartoons in the classroom can help kids express themselves, develop their thinking skills, and explore their artistic sides. Cartoons can be important tools in helping teachers talk to their students about politics and world affairs. Students may have a different frame of reference than adults. Most of us don’t think twice when a cartoonist draws a donkey our mind shifts to  a Democrat. But a student, might wonder, “Why do they use donkeys in a cartoon?” Classroom discussions will try to see into the mind of the cartoonist and interpret what he or she is trying to say. Students can use higher level thinking skills.   A student may inquire, “Where is he or she coming from? What’s their perspective?   Students will need to research and analyze to find out answers.

Younger students can create cartoons that focus on topics they understand or want to learn more about, such as making friends to joining sports.  They can become more familiar with symbols in cartoons and how they often represent other things. A shark, for example, could refer to a sports team, or someone out to make money at another’s expense.

Based on his experience with the political cartoon project, thirteen-year-old Bob believes political cartoons are a good way to help kids his age talk and become more engaged in current events, such as the conflicts in the Middle East.

Information taken from the following resources •Tips for getting kids reading newspapers are available from Newspapers in Education. •Connect for Kids’ ‘Uncle Sam’s Kids •Connect for Kids’Pop Culture

Sense of Humor

Today I posted a lighter look on education.  I posted videos that look at education through a different lens.  As educators we all need to laugh and not take ourselves so seriously all the time.  Your students will be thankful if you not only have a sense of direction but a sense of humor.  Smile today, it feels great!

Quotes that make you think

Humor has a way of bringing people together.  It unites people.  In fact, I’m
rather serious when I suggest that someone should plant a few whoopee cushions
in the United Nations.  ~Ron Dentinger

Every survival kit should
include a sense of humor.  ~Author Unknown

Humor is the great thing,
the saving thing.  The minute it crops up, all our irritation and resentments
slip away, and a sunny spirit takes their place.  ~Mark Twain

Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds.  A
sense of humor is just common sense, dancing.  ~William James

What you need to succeed!

Here is an overview of the 5 min. University.  Things that you need to remember to succeed in life.  Does it take you back to some of your experiences in the classroom?  If anything it will put a smile on your face.

Bloom’s Taxonomy with a Twist

In our practice, we are always referred back to Bloom’s Taxonomy for higher level thinking skills.  Did you ever wish that you could give the adult version with sound and pictures so they can vividly remember and apply each level of learning.

Bloom’s Taxonomy According to Seinfeld and Andy Griffith- “The Adult Version”.

Enjoy!  I bet you will now visualize Bloom’s levels differently, with a twist and a chuckle.

( Please excuse any language that you find offensive.)


Andy Griffith

I will survive!

Even though Thanksgiving is a month away, turkeys everywhere are preparing- you go girl!

Check it out!

New Adventure

Another chance to spread my wings…

This week I decided that I will be writing entries for a website called, “Teachers’ Count”.  This avenue will allow me to provide an question/answer format about a variety of topics for either the educator, parent, or community member.  Next week a survey will be going out to this website’s followers to see what and how they would like to be involved as a reader or participant.   I will also be sharing and presenting education information.

I’m looking forward to this new adventure and I’m hoping that you may consider reading not only my blog but taking a peek on….

Here’s an overview for the site

Welcome to  TeachersCount is a national, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to raise the status of the teaching profession and provide resources to the education community. has three main sections: I’m a Teacher, I’m a WannaTeach, and I’m a Teacher Booster.

If you’re a teacher, you’ll find many free resources in the I’m a Teacher  section. For substantive educational content, check out TeachersTopic, which contains interviews with education experts, and Education News, which features news briefs about the most important news in education.  If you’d like a boost in morale, visit the TeachersPet Honor Roll  and StudentStories—two places where students past and present can honor and thank the teachers who have made a difference in their lives.

If you’re a prospective teacher, please see the I’m a WannaTeach section for many helpful resources, including How to Become a Teacher, Why Become a Teacher, information on teaching certification programs  and scholarships, and FAQs.

What is your lasting impression with students?


Education Quotes

“The whole art of teaching is only the art of awakening the natural curiosity of young minds for the purpose of satisfying it afterwards. ” — Anatole France

“The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.” — B. B. King

“Too often we give our children answers to remember rather than problems to solve.” — Roger Lewin

“The [person] who can make hard things easy is the educator.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A master can tell you what he expects of you. A teacher, though, awakens your own expectations.”