Benjamin Banneker, Mathematician

He built the first clock made in the United States, and he built it from memory, using parts he carved by hand. It kept perfect time for 50 years. He planned the entire city of Washington, D.C. in two days. His publications were mailed around the world by presidents and kings. Well, actually, probably not. […]


Cyber Bullying – An Increasing Online Threat

A little over four years ago, right here in this journal, we addressed a kind of bullying that was relatively new on the middle/high school scene – cyber bullying. Even though it was not a universally prevalent problem as yet, we speculated how and why it was on the rise and what measures would need […]


Black Friday and the GDP

‘Tis the season for retail discounts! If you participated in Black Friday, we hope you found a great deal – and gave a little boost to the GDP. Some U.S. shoppers had to head for their post-Thanksgiving nap a little earlier this year to be ready to participate in the Black Friday rush, as many […]


Christmas around the World

Can you imagine celebrating Christmas during the summer? What would you think about celebrating the holiday on January 7 instead of December 25? What traditions come to mind when you hear the word Christmas? You might think of Christmas traditions like the decorating of the Christmas tree, the hanging of stockings, the arrival of a […]

Growing a Poetry Tree

“I think that I shall never see a poem as lovely as a tree” is from the poem “Trees” by Joyce Kilmer. Imagine growing a Poetry Tree in your classroom to investigate and celebrate poetry. Cultivate the soil by studying the elements of poetry, fertilize your plant by examining poetry, and admire your Poetry Tree […]

Hypatia of Alexandria

Dangerous beliefs. Rule breaker. Murder! Now, what ten-year-old would not be interested in that? A woman literally a millennia ahead of her time, Hypatia of Alexandria, was raised to be a scholar in a time when women were generally thought to be of lower intelligence than men and therefore not fit to study. She was […]


Hurricanes: A Welcome Event?

Hurricanes are among the most destructive forces in nature. Ask yourself this, are tropical cyclones always really an unwelcome event? Engage students by using some of the exciting Web tools and lessons to learn about these dynamic systems to find an answer to our question. This summer has “featured” high temperatures and drought across a […]


Open Courseware

Do you have an English literature topic that intrigues you? Want to learn more about the works of Shakespeare, Melville, and Morrison? What about writing genres, reinventing fairy tales, or appreciating poetry?  What if you could learn more about the topic of your choice…but without the constraints of scheduled classes? Open courseware is the answer. […]

Put a Little Poetry in your Life (or your Pocket)

When is the last time you read a poem? It is easy to overlook the genre; poems are often so short they could fit on slips of paper, tucked in a pocket like a secret. Novels carry the weight of pages, non-fiction texts the importance of facts. To some, poetry seems insignificant, but poetry expresses […]

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