Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2016

Day 25: Just Stop

Source:  Gonzales, J. (2015, September 3). 5 common teaching practices I'm kicking to the curb. [web log] Retrieved from
What is Sacred: Students are sacred. Do no harm, even with good intentions. This article is about some of the things that I will raise my hand to say that, yes, I did that, and I apologize. I meant well.
One of the things is popcorn reading, which I stopped doing over ten years ago, but that means I had it in my arsenal for over ten years. Again, I meant well. I am into coaching for fluency and prosody but I needed to give the readings to people ahead of time so they could practice. 
I also used popcorn reading so that I could stop and model thinking, but again, there are other ways to model thinking, like my actually reading or again, giving people time to practice. 
What I learned and still use from Linda Reif who came to work with us one year, is to create plays with my novels by highlighting dialogu…

Day 24: Be Wrong

Source: Kamenetz, A. (2016, Aril 16). Why teachers need to know the wrong answers. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: First, the picture is freaky. It is from the website and it depicts the flat earth theory, but why legs? Anyway, this is about how in cognitive thinking, if you don't understand why their answer is wrong, or rather their logic is faulty, then you are unable to address the misconceptions in order to then teach them the right answer. 
There were also some scary examples of all of our (ok, my) faulty logic misconceptions regarding science. Here is the sacred. In a study they did with teachers,  They found that teacher knowledge of common student misconceptions was weak: They knew 85 percent of the right answers, but only 41 percent of the "right" wrong answers. But, among teachers with stronger knowledge of student weaknesses, their students learned significantly more science, based on a retest at the end of the year. And so, what?
The first s…

Day 23 Just Dots (Thoughts)

Source: Rubio-Cortes, G.(2010). Educators make the case for community engagement. National Civic Review. DOI: 10.1002/ncr2011
What is Sacred: What I thought I was going to get was an insight in what it takes to make a meaningful school-community bond. I sort of did but it was not anything I can immediately implement and not anything that I didn't already know.
The big ideas: Schools are a valuable community resourceSchools can be more successful if they educate and involve the entire familyCommunity dreams can result from school leadershipSchools play an important role in promoting youth civic engagement and preparing youths for their global role in solving society's challenges The rest of the article gives examples from the author's work in this engagement as well as other principals. It also gives big props to Met Life for helping.

Connections to Current/Future Work:
I think sometimes dots are not really connected. They are just dots. What it does make me think about is the…

Day 22: Common Formative Assessments

Ainsworth, L. & Viegut,  D. (2006). Common Formative Assessments: How to Connect Standards-based Instruction and Assessment. Corwin Press.
What is Sacred: The benefits of common formative assessments:
• Regular and timely feedback regarding student attainment of most critical standards, which allows teachers to modify instruction to better meet the diverse learning needs of all students • Multiple-measure assessments that allow students to demonstrate their understanding in a variety of formats • Ongoing collaboration opportunities for grade-level, course, and department teachers • Consistent expectations within a grade level, course, and department regarding standards, instruction, and assessment priorities • Agreed-upon criteria for proficiency to be met within each individual classroom, grade level, school, and district • Deliberate alignment of classroom, school, district, and state assessments to better prepare students for success on state assessments • Results that h…

Day 21: Rethinking Teacher Evaluation

Source: C. Danielson (2016, April 20). Charlotte Danielson on rethinking teacher evaluation. [Web log]. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: Charlotte Danielson, author of Framework for Teaching weighs in on the ideals originally set forth by her first book and researched by the Danielson Group as well as the Gates Foundation's Measures of Effective Teaching project. What has happened to her original framework is that administrators and systems have taken her growth framework and turned it into a punitive numbers system to evaluate teachers rather than to help them grow and improve student learning. Here is what she continues to say: It's time for a major rethinking of how we structure teacher evaluation to ensure that teachers, as professionals, can benefit from numerous opportunities to continually refine their craft.Connection to Current/Future Work:

I …

Day 20: Creating Case Studies

Source: Zucker, D. (2009). How to do case study research. School of Nursing Faculty Publication Series. Paper 2. University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: This paper does a good job of giving concise definitions for different types of case studies as well as some cited research on frames to use to teach students how to conduct case studies. 
an intrinsic case study is undertaken to gain a deeper understanding of the case. Although this is a nursing paper and the case studies are medical in nature, there is one sentence about education  and that in education, we are able to study the individual as a unit of analysis, and use the case study method to develop rich and comprehensive understandings about people.

Connection to Current and Future Work:
After meeting with my colleague, we decided to change our introduction to middle and secondary education course to include a case study so I am boning up on my case …

Day 19: Ancient GPS

Source: Kingley, T. (2016, March 17). The secrets of the wave pilots. The New York Times Magazine. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: This is an article about the wave pilots of the Marshall Islands. Ri-meto is a wave pilot. It may be a dying cultural practice but some western scientist have been trying to record the process to see what the science is behind it. What is not said, but what I was looking for is the idea of ancestral knowledge that is in a practitioner even if there is no one left to teach it. 
What seems clear is that our ability to navigate is inextricably tied not just to our ability to remember the past but also to learning, decision-making, imagining and planning for the future. Being lost — assuming, of course, that you are eventually found — has one obvious benefit: the chance to learn about the wider world and reframe your perspective.Connection to Current/Future Work: 
We are using the…

Day 18: What is Culturally Responsive Education

Source: Hattori, M.T.P. (2015). Culturally responsive education: What is culturally responsive education? Unpublished article, University of Hawaii Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii.
What is Sacred:
This article, written by my friend and fellow Mana Wahine, Dr. Mary Hattori, gives a great mini lit review of what culturally responsive education is and who are the researchers that talk about it. I wish this were published so I could store it online, but I guess I will just need to scan it in. 
Here are some quotable quotes: using the cultural knowledge, prior experiences, and performance styles of diverse students to make learning more appropriate and effective for them; it teaches to and through the strengths of these students. (Gay, G., 2010)
Indigenous Learning Theory is about cultivating cognition and consciousness via spiritual awareness and reflection on lived experience. They direct us toward realizing that human awareness is a part of lifeʻs web. They connect us to smaller and lareger elem…

Day 17: How To

Source: Pautasso, M. (2013). Ten simple rules for writing a literature review. PLOS Computational Biology 9(7), 1-5. 
What is Sacred: I don't know about sacred. This article gives readers ten simple rules. You know, the Captain Obvious thing again. The little nuggets that I already use - take notes while you are reading and keep track of the sources. I found that out the hard way during my dissertation because well, I'm lazy.
Connections to Present/Future Work: This is another article for my chapter 2 literature review class this summer. Show them to the water. They get what they need. 

Day 16: A Different Kind of Case Study

Traister, R. (2016, May 30). Hillary Clinton vs. herself. New York Retrieved from
What is Sacred: This is not an academic reading. I started reading this weekly newsletter from Ann Friedman and it is about what she is reading for the week. She reads a lot, so it makes sense that she has a successful weekly newsletter. Slow, narrow readers like me crave information from the well read. 
Any way, this is a profile about Hillary Clinton and the writing is really both objectively balanced and subjective at the same time. I am not sure how to describe it but it is a no holds barred look at the former first lady, former New York senator, former Secretary of State. It gave me a good glimpse of being female in my mother's time. Most importantly, it paints a clear picture but leaves the reader to look in and leave with one's own interpretation, even though the author makes her own analysis of what she is …

Day 15: Reflect Yourself

Something short. Source:  J. Kobialka. (2016, May 10). Reflection: A tool for assessment, empowerment, and self awareness. [Weblog]. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: I think reflection is something that I always want to do, something I try to carve out time for, but I am always looking for new ways to do reflection. If teachers are more reflective about their own practice, they are more effective. So this is just a short article on reflection tools. Nothing is new for me, but it's a good reminder. The link is good for further reading. 
Connection to Current/Future Work: I am thinking about adding some of these reflections for my introduction to middle and high course next semester and I was thinking about making a chart notebook like the calendar I got from my son. It has about five lines, a date and a year. You just reflect with one sentence. It's like a reflect with shout outs and it wou…

Day 14: Research on Teaching About and With Informational Texts

There is no clever spin to this article. It's an article on research. It's a gasp literature review (wait I'm teaching a class on literature review next month). As far as dissertations go, people who do this type of article well find that their chapter 2 is a snap. That was my worse chapter. This is why I must read more of these. I need to discipline myself to read these and give honor to the work that others do to value research done by others in order to make connections for the reader.

Maloch, B. & Bomer, R. (2013). Teaching about and with informational texts: What does research teach us? Language Arts, 90 (6), 441-450. Retrieved from

What is Sacred:
This article talks about both the effect of bringing informational text into elementary classrooms as well as what research says about the types of informational texts that work best (regular versus hybrid). It…

Day 13: Bring In Captain Obvious

Captain Obvious is the spokesperson for which is the site I like to use for booking my hotels, but not because of Captain Obvious, still, it's a good site and I don't have complaints. The thing about that service, though, is that yes they obviously have good intel, but it also helps to check other websites to find out more information. In the end, I usually go with the prices on
Education is like that. Sometimes educators do their own action research and find that hey, this intel is obvious, but it's true. Still, even if it matches my own gut reaction, it is nice to hear other people say a rock is a rock. 
Source: P. Ripp (2016, June 2). The one thing that made the biggest difference (according to my students). [Weblog]. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: This teacher is a scaled down version of Donalyn Miller, the Book Whisperer. Donalyn Miller i…

Day 12: The Place for Song in Methodology

Lopes, R.K. (2016). Ua noho au a kupa i ke alo. In Oliveira, K. & Wright, E. (Eds.), Kanaka ʻōiwi methodologies: Moʻolelo and metaphor (30-41). Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.

What is Sacred:
This article is exactly why we need spaces within our university to have dialogue around and define in a very broad, layered, nuanced sense what we see as waiwai, valued, and how we can take away the lessons of our ancestors, ʻike kūpuna and create methodologies and frames for ourselves. Each of us are "heard," in small circles, but how can we create those spaces where we can dialogue together in order to be thought agents in the world of research and philosophy, venturing outside of ourselves to be the change?

In short, this article is about taking the lyrics for the "Kaniakapupu Song," more commonly known as "Ua Noho Au a Kupa i Ke Alo" and melding it with the author's moʻolelo about his mentor Uncle Kimo to create a definition of Hawaiian meth…

Day 11: The Place of Poetry

Source: Lehman, D. (2014, July 18). Sing to me o muse (but keep it brief). The New York Times. Retrieved from
What is Sacred: This article/essay by David Lehman is about the changing face of poetry. We no longer buy poetry books. Poetry readings have turned into spoken word contests. The poetry I read online is more likely to be on a tweet or on Instagram. So Lehman's point is that poetry in our society is found in different places. The idea of reading a poem in the traditional sense is as obsolete as a journalist writing on a typewriter. The article even hints at the demise of the humanities, liberal education and canonical literature, all results of the death of poetry. But is poetry dead or are the places where poetry live just different? So what is sacred? Have the conservators of culture embraced the acceleration of change that may endanger the study of the literary humanities as if — like the clock face, cursive script and the rotary phone — it, too, can b…

Day 10: The Ropes of Resistance

Source: Goodyear-Kaʻōpua, N. (2016). Reproducing the ropes of resistance: Hawaiian studies methodologies. In Oliveira, K. & Wright, E. (Eds.), Kanaka ʻōiwi methodologies: Moʻolelo and metaphor (1-29). Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.
What is Sacred: Goodyear-Kaʻōpua offers up four principles, single chords, or ʻaho, that when braided together form a metaphor for Kanaka ʻŌiwi research. The four ʻaho are: lāhui, collective identity and self-definition; ea, sovereignty and leadership; kuleana, positionality and obligations; and pono, harmonious relationships, justice and healing. 
I think as Indigenous researchers, our thoughts converge across different space and time and this essay just reconfirms that. The author looks at Hawaiian studies and Kanaka ʻōiwi research in a broader, multi-disciplinary sense,  and the metaphor of the ropes of resistance as dialogue starters for other Indigenous researchers. She embraces the multiplicity of possibilities that are created when we are a…

Day 9: Writing Literature Reviews

Baumeister, R. F. & Leary, M.R. (1997). Writing narrative literature reviews. Review of General Psychology 1(3), 311-320.

What is Sacred:
This is another stone soup article, but this time I am using this article for an assigned reading for my ED612 literature review course. I am sure that it would have been easier to use a textbook, but I do not believe in one way for all or one frame for all, so I am building several articles and like other stone soup articles, the reader needs to weigh what they need with what the article is giving them to create their own source material.

Therefore, what is sacred just depends. Here is what I pulled out with the understanding that I am looking at this article as a possible source as the instructor of the class and not someone who actually needs to learn how to write my own literature review.
Authors aspiring to write such reviews [literature reviews] must therefore recognize that their task is not simply assembling and describing past wo…

Day 8: Mana Full

Source: Waitere, H. & Johnston, P. (2009). Echoed silences: In abstentia: Mana wahine in institutional contexts. Women’s Studies Journal, 23(2), 14-31.
I am labeling this article as source material and at this point, at this time, this article is here for a purpose, as source material for me to contemplate, to cite and to write in response to. The notes therefore, look crazy. I am breaking protocol and revealing my true writing process that is messy and disorganized. I am not an outline person. I always felt that English teachers who made me write outlines first were just being mean and trying to punish me for writing and collecting source material like this. It's a good thing I outwitted them by writing my outline last to comply while still doing things my own way.
What is Sacred AND Connection to Current and Future Work:
“Putting the onus on indigenous peoples to speak, then, without a concurrent focus on the social conditions that afford a hearing, in effect, renders the spe…

Day 7 Sacred Reading: Reverberations

Source: Ah Nee-Benham, M. (2016). From the Dean. In K. R. Oliveira & E. K. Wright (Eds.), Kanaka ʻōiwi methodologies (pp. vii-viii). Honolulu, HI: University of Hawaii Press.
What is Sacred:  This is a two-page introduction to a book I am reading every day until I am done, but I am reading this because Maenette Ah Nee-Benham's name keeps coming up this month in different conversations so I am following some of her writing and she is currently the dean for Hawaiʻinuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge at Mānoa, but there are rumors that she is on a short list for something closer to me. I last wrote about her on Day 4, again just an introduction. I hope I am not following a pattern here. 
the authors contributing to this book have intentionally engaged in learning, exploring, and teaching through stories. This very courageous act of framing and articulating knowledge regenerates ritual (knowledge and wisdom of ceremony), responsibility (role and obligation), and reciprocity (the…

Day 6 Sacred Reading: Conscientization - Resistance - Transformation