teaching & learning, in a fancy dress


Well, folks, it looks like Secretary DeVos is having a hard time getting her head around the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Hey, we’re all been there, right? That’s why I created these handy dandy postcards for us to send along in support. Feel free to share, print and send away! Don’t forget:

  • Make sure you trim them down to 4″x 6″ or you’ll have to pay full postage.
  • Page 4 has the address side of the postcard already filled in. Just flip and print!
  • Disclaimer: I am making fun of her, not our children.



This month, I packed 16 years of traditional teaching in four boxes and brought them into my home. They are still there. Like a threat. I can’t unpack them.

Continue reading


Student: Beth, what did you say you have again? OCD?

Beth: Nope! Though I understand your confusion. I have AD/HD.

Student: Huh? But you’re not all, “Blaaaah!!!”

[flaps arms, runs in a small circle with tongue wagging]

Beth: That’s not what hyperactivity looks like in everyone.

[student accurately senses a lecture, flees to his next class]

Continue reading

Work Mink for Blog

This past month, I took the state exam that would officially allow me to teach students with disabilities. This is huge news for several reasons: Continue reading

On my commute home tonight, “How was school today?” was taken to another level. Through a series of question and answers, a son explained to his father that he joined the “Identity Exploration” group during his affinity group class. He said, “That’s where kids who aren’t sure about how they self-identify yet and can learn more about it. I mean, on one hand, it’s easy because I’m Jewish. I know I’m not going to join the Christian group, but what about sexuality and other identities? I’d like to know more about those so I’m going to explore.”

Yup. Tears of joy all the way home. We’re getting there, folks.

January 28, 2016

MLK Meme

My previous post pointed out the dearth of time dedicated to educational planning for students with learning disabilities, prompted by Tracy Thompson’s piece in the Atlantic, The Special Education Charade. The article spoke many unfortunate truths, however the words that rattled me most were those in the commentary below it:

Continue reading

Captain Kirk

For the past 16 years, I have been one of those “good” teachers: the one parents request, the one administration knows will not only keep issues to a minimum, but also manage to teach even the toughest student a thing or two in nine months. Even as a post-undergrad newbie, my “at-risk” students would score surprisingly high on standardized tests and they still liked coming to school every day, which is today’s equivalent of an educational unicorn. Continue reading


The federal government recently reminded school districts that they are allowed to use the word “dyslexia” when documenting a child’s special education needs. For you lay people, that’s like your doctor being reminded that she can use the word “insomnia” when you routinely cannot sleep. They may prefer the term “sleep disturbance” but they’re allowed to say insomnia. Regardless of what word your doctor uses, you are most likely to respond, “No shit, Sherlock.”

Continue reading

It’s that time of year again. Time for calling upon the executive skills of a ninja if one wants to dress as a ninja. For us creative types, Halloween is our New Year’s Eve. It is that swoony time of year…rife with ideas for what could be, when anything is possible…that comes with a clearly established deadline. Thank god. It’s a downright conundrum for divergent thinkers who wow us at parties with costumes like “Papal Towel Dispenser” by my friend Alex (think the pope with a roll of Bounty hanging around his neck) or Laura’s “Windswept”.


My very creative friend, Laura

Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: