Showing posts from January, 2010

Watch Video and Read Declaration

Today I spoke with some very good third grade students in Council Rock, Pennsylvania about U.S. Government. Watch the video.

We also worked together to write our own Declaration of Independence:
1. Because of our lack of rights, we are dependent on adults and thus vulnerable to being bossed around.

2. Without the right to vote, we lack a medium to share our opinions.

3. We’re part of the population too, and we’ll be affected by the laws and decisions that elected candidates make.

4. Adults have the right to choose to go to bed whenever they want to—we want freedom in time of sleep too!

Washington State Geography

Disaster in Haiti

Hi everybody,

I was really struck by the immensity of devastation the Haitian earthquake caused, and I set up two webpages with UNICEF (the United Nations Children's Fund) and Mercy Corps to donate money to help those affected by the disaster. I hope that you will donate and support the people of Haiti.

If you would like to make a donation to Mercy Corps, please visit

If you would like to make a donation to UNICEF, please visit

Thank you,



Today I was connecting with an East Coast school over the internet for a presentation, and it was a nightmare. My audio was choppy; theirs was worse. They couldn’t stream video from their webcam. My projector made a humming noise in the background. It was a litany of problems all in a row. My mom and I were joking about the reliability of systems, and she says, “It shows you that even great systems aren’t always reliable.” (Duh.) I said,“Mom, no system is reliable—not even life. The only reliable system is Death. It at least never fails you.”Thought I would just add my Morose Quote for the day. :)

Ohio eTech

Just wanted to let everybody know what's up next on the travel list! I will be doing the Opening Keynote at the Ohio eTech conference in Columbus, Ohio on February 1st. If you are in that neck of the woods, be sure to come and see me present both the opening keynote and a featured speech. Take a look at some of the keynote speakers:

Adora Svitak
A twelve-year-old author and teacher, Adora has been teaching writing workshops since she published her first book at age seven. Adora is an American child prodigy known for her essays, stories, poems, blogs, and full-length books. She has been featured on Oprah, CNN's Young People Who Rock, NBC Nightly News, and countless other programs. In January 2009 she appeared in a UK public service television documentary, The World's Cleverest Child and Me. Adora's presentations feature live writing demonstrations, interactive activities, and storytelling. Adora provides kids with a tangible and exciting example of where writing can take…


Usually I post a reminder if I’m about to go to a conference, but I got a little absent-minded—sorry about that! Over the past week, I’ve been in Orlando for the Florida Education Technology Conference. I’ve gotten the chance to see speakers like Tammy Worcester, Ed Begley, and Scott Kinney. I gave my own “Eye-Opening Keynote” on Friday morning, bright and early at 7:45 AM. Ken Royal, Tech Editor for Scholastic Administrator Magazine and founder of the Educators’ Royal Treatment blog, was kind enough to introduce me and later conduct an interview—watch below. Thanks!

The Problem with Dinosaurs

I really don’t have anything against dinosaurs (aside from the fact that many of them are large, ugly, and fearsome) but I do think that museums tend to focus too much on them. I was recently in Orlando, FL for the Florida Education Technology Conference, or FETC. Along the way, my mom and I visited the Orlando Science Center. Like many other science museums we’d been to, the Orlando Science Center had a large exhibit on dinosaurs. This would be fine if there were more exhibits on other things, but it seemed as though the dinosaurs took up most of the museum’s space.We’ve faced similar exhibits at other museums. Dinosaurs, dinosaurs, dinosaurs…it might be just me, but I think that museums are trying to cater too heavily to the under-fourteen-year-old boy demographic, since they seem like the crowd who like dinosaurs. While I understand the museum’s need to attract visitors and revenue, can’t you be a little more innovative than mere dinosaur exhibits? Maybe whales or sharks or other l…


I was watching giant shuttle buses (or is it busses?) crawling by and I thought of a little snippet, perhaps, of a new poem:

"If the road is a giant forest,
Then buses are the beasts of the road,"

which now developed into:

"If the road is a giant forest,
Then buses are the beasts of the road,
The Prius is a panda bear,
And the Jeep is the frowning toad,
The sleek towncar is the waiting shark
In the waters off the shore,
The Hummer is a grizzly with its bulky heavy fur,
And I? I am a hiker--a pedestrian, on tour."