Online Writing and Culture

What my students and I are talking about in Writing for the Internet often intersects with current events and ongoing issues. Here are a few such issues and reflections. Palin’s Private E-Mail HackedBloggers have alleged that David Kernell, 20, is the one who has claimed responsibility for breaking into the Alaska governor’s e-mail account. (Background and snarking via- Metafilter) Zounds! New “Dit-Dah” Lingo of Telegraph Operators Threatens Standard English! ;-)I…


A former student sent me a link to a Republican spoof of FaceBook, BarackBook. It’s an interesting piece of new media campaigning, where the RNC has created an entire Facebook parody displaying the social network of Barack’s friends. I know you go to great lengths to remain unbiased in the classroom (which is awesome!) but I thought you would enjoy looking at this from a social networking standpoint. It’s really…

Test Links

My son created a game in Scratch, “Hector’s Catch and Avoid.” Here’s a short video showing what Scratch looks like from the inside: Hector.swf My Son the Science Teacher

Sparking the texts instead of reading them

A student in my “History and Future of the Book” class today referred to how some students in a different class got caught “sparking the texts instead of reading them.”  I knew she was referring to Spark Notes, but I’d never heard the name being used as a verb before.

''You Can Always Look It Up''… or Can You?

E.D. Hirsch (2000) The progressive theory that students should gain knowledge through a limited number of projects instead of by taking courses in separate subjects is based on the following reasoning. If you learn a bunch of facts in separate, academic courses you will passively acquire a lot of inert, fragmented knowledge. You will be the victim of something called “rote learning. “But if you engage in integrated, hands-on projects…

St. Valentine's Day Gifts

From the University of Toronto’s Representative Poetry Online: “Poems to be memorized and spoken to your sweetheart.” They came to tell your faults to me, They named them over one by one; I laughed aloud when they were done, I knew them all so well before, — Oh, they were blind, too blind to see Your faults had made me love you more.— Sarah Teasdale, “Faults“