The Edge of Education Carnival. Issue 1

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The-edgeWelcome to the first issue of The Edge of Education Carnival! Obviously, this is a new venture for us at We Teach We Learn. So, we’re learning a lot about running one of these things.

The idea of this carnival is to share experiences of “edgy” teaching and learning. There are a lot of great things happening out there in the edusphere. More and more, we’re beginning to understand how to blend the art of teaching with the science of learning. It’s a balancing act, and this carnival is the place to share our triumphs and failures walking that tightrope.

It’s about the risks we take, and the new stuff we try, and the stories we bring back from the adventures of blazing new trails.

Knowing this, it makes sense that stories of personal experiences will always be get links before other kinds of submissions–like list posts, for example.

Frankly we were was shocked at the number of lists of 100 that we received. We ignored most of them. Indeed we were about to delete all of them, but when we looked closer, a select few were actually interesting. Upon further review, we came to the conclusion that some of these submissions actually delivered quite a bit of value. Especially to the teachers at the “edges” of technology and education innovation. So we kept four list posts–out of 57.

Understand that not all original posts were accepted either. We’re setting the bar pretty high. In order to be accepted, posts must be valuable, interesting and honest. Action research is held in the highest regard, but interesting best practices and insightful reflections on educational literature and/or personal experience also qualifies as “Edgy.”

Our guiding intent is to maintain the highest levels of quality, value and integrity here. Teacher’s should expect nothing less.

Okay, we’ve rambled on enough now. Let’s get to the good stuff.  In no particular order:

The following paragraph from her entry hits the nail on the head:

While I was tutoring the other day, my student asked whether I’d ever used Calculus in my ‘real life’ (which I assume meant away from the classroom – he’s a bright student who has realized that teachers sometimes have a life away from school). I had to answer no, I never had – after all, if you chuck a rock off a cliff, it’s easier to just estimate where it will reach its highest point and where it will hit the ground than it is to pull out a pencil and paper and work out the equations.

  • Jeremy Burman presents Update: Baby Einstein DVDs to be refunded posted at Advances in the History of Psychology. Jeremy writes about the recent offer from Disney to refund the money of those who purchased Baby Einstein DVDs, saying that this begs the question: what do parents and teachers have to do to encourage giftedness in their children? He then offers a brief annotated bibliography of sources related to this topic.
  • We all know how important novelty is to stimulate attention and motivation. Rachel Lynette has supplied a great list of ideas we can use to provide that spark of surprise to engage students again. Get out of that Rut! posted at Minds in Bloom. We couldn’t agree more with this, from her post,

Yes, routines have their place, and you need them to keep your class in order and to get things done. But they are also so very boring and they don’t do a thing to stimulate creative thought. So, every so often (at least once a day!) shake your kids up and do something different.

TIC writes,

You’ve experienced it before: you teach the same lesson to two different classes. In one class it’s the best lesson you’ve ever taught. In the next class the lesson bombs. Have you ever sought to discover the reason behind this mystery?

  • Twitter has taken social media by storm, and individuals as well as corporate America are scrambling to understand how to capitalize. Shelly Terrell presents a great article explaining how educators can utilize this new tool to ramp up their professional development. PRESTO: How to Build A PLN Using Twitter posted at Teacher Reboot Camp is a great introduction on how to build a Personal Learning Network.

By way of introduction to this fabulous article, Shelly writes, “I hope educators will be able to learn about the usefulness of Twitter in this very short presentation.”

  • Jim McGuire has created a simple assignment that rewards students for reading. The problem is that, based on the documentation he’s getting back, some students are lying about how much they’ve read. Jim thinks it’s a motivational issue and shares a great video he plans to use to help motivate his students. Fake Reading, Will Smith, and Being Successful posted at The Reading Workshop.

And now for the list posts. These posts aren’t original, but collections of original ideas. If you’re looking for inspiration, browsing these links is great way to find some

That concludes our first edition of The Edge of Education Carnival. Want to submit to the next one?  We’d love to hear about your “Edgy” teaching.  Just use this handy submission form.

Image credits:

Front Page: Woman on cliff

In article: Climbing man

Thank You!


  1. Thank you for including me! This is a great read! I enjoyed the different quotes highlighted from the various posts. Thank you for introducing me to some innovative blogs!

  2. Thanks for including me on your carnival. Love the idea of a carnival that features “edgy” ideas! So many interesting posts, and like Shelly, I love the little quotes from each post.

  3. Hello, my friend! It’s been a long time.

    So this is where you’ve been and what you’ve been up to!……Very impressive, Chris. Your talent never ceases to amaze me.

    A big congratulations on the Masters, by the way. Experience and credentials in the hands of such a progessive and innvoative educator just has to be good for everyone!

    I’d love to catch up when you have time. In the meanwhile I’ll look forward to tuning in.

    As always, all the best to you and your family.


  4. Pingback: Edublogs 2009 Awards: Inspiration in Education | Teacher Reboot Camp