Monthly Archives: March 2019

Please Consider Signing This…

It is time for Betsy DeVos to go. Please consider signing this petition from the Network for Public Education.

Ursula Le Guin Prescribes a Lifestyle

“When action grows unprofitable, gather information; when information grows unprofitable, sleep.”

Ursula Le Guin

The Left Hand of Darkness ch. 3 (1969)

Excerpted from: Shapiro, Fred, ed. The Yale Book of Quotations. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.

The Weekly Text, March 29, 2019

Today marks the end, on Mark’s Text Terminal, of Women’s History Month 2019. When I return on Monday, it will be April Fool’s Day. Here is a reading on JK Rowling and its attendant vocabulary building and comprehension worksheet.

I would think this is high interest material, as Ms. Rowling and her books remain interesting to kids.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Ruth Prawer Jhabvala

“(1927-2013) British novelist and short-story writer. Born in Germany of Polish and German-Jewish parents, Jhabvala lived in England for twelve years before marrying an Indian architect and moving to New Delhi, where she remained until she moved to New York in 1976. Her subject is India, which she views as both an insider and an outsider, and with increasing distress at the poverty and misery surrounding her own comfortable life. She is concerned with social mores and psychological power struggles and psychological power struggles, and employs wit, nuance, and evocative descriptive detail. Her first novels, To Whom She Will (1955; U.S. Amrita, 1956), The Nature of Passion (1956), and Esmond in India (1957), deal with Indian arranged marriages and an East-West alliance. She has written a number of screenplays. Her later novels, such as Heat and Dust (1975), later made into a successful movie, show the influence of cinematic techniques. She has also published several volumes of short stories. In Search of Love and Beauty (1983) is a novel about German emigres in 1930s New York. Poet and Dancer (1993) is a novel.”

Excerpted from: Murphy, Bruce, ed. Benet’s Reader’s Encyclopedia, Fourth Edition. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.

Everyday Edit: Anne Frank

Here is an Everyday Edit worksheet on Anne Frank. And let me say for the last time this month, to give credit where credit where credit is overwhelmingly due, that if you and your students like working on these short grammar exercises, the good people at Education World generously give away a yearlong supply of them–just click on that long hyperlink

DeVos Wants to Defund Special Olympics, Boost Funding for School Choice

[This is disgraceful. I don’t believe this smug, pampered heiress has a decent bone in her body.]

Diane Ravitch's blog

Betsy DeVos was grilled yesterday in Congressional hearings about her budget proposals. She was repeatedly questioned about her desire to increase charter school funding from $440 million to $500 million a year. The Network for Public Education report on the waste, fraud, and abuse in this program was cited.

While increasing the charter budget, DeVos wants to cut $18 million from the Special Olympics, which benefits 272,000 children with disabilities. 

To put it mildly, her priorities are wacky. She wants to cut the budget of a successful and valuable program while heaping money on charters that are likely to never open or quickly close.

DeVos said the philanthropic community already funds the Special Olympics. The same is true of charters. Billionaires and Wall Street heap hundreds of millions on charters. The Waltons alone have spent more than a billion on charters. Why does the Federal government add hundreds of millions more?

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The Algonquin Wits: Peggy Wood

Peggy Wood, actress and Round Table frequenter, joined the group one day when [Alexander] Woollcott was discussion the feasibility of reviving Macbeth as a Broadway play. Acknowledging the arrival of Miss Wood, Aleck said, ‘We’re discussing the cast. I don’t think you’d make a very good Lady Macbeth, do you Peggy?’

‘No, Aleck,’ she answered. ‘But you would.’”

Excerpted from: Drennan, Robert E., ed. The Algonquin Wits. New York: Kensington, 1985.