December 06, 2008

Less is More?

My previous post generated a lot of traffic and comments. It’s good that many are concerned about a fellow colleague teacher blogger, and even more are outraged at any attempt to censor our collective freedom of speech rights. Clearly there needs to be some rules concerning the confidentiality of teachers, students, administrators, and schools, but most of the blogs and edu-sites I frequent are already very careful about what is written and how individuals are represented. So I say we teacher bloggers keep writing about teaching because it’s not only good for the soul, it also makes us better educators.

As you should know by now, the “Best of…” season is upon us. This blog was overlooked, again. In my previous post I pointed out a few of my personal favorites. I believe that lists like mine (and yours) are the only ones that really matter. Not in a wholly narcissistic way, but the Internet is a big place full of great stuff and it’s just not realistic to try and narrow the choices down to a “top ten” list. It’s as absurd as Dave’s nightly contributions. But then, maybe I only feel that way because I was left out.

Speaking of being left out, I am just now getting started on Twitter. Do you tweet? You should. My twitter id is KevinBibo. For those of you who have not yet got started, here and here are two good articles I found via Alfred’s Computer Science blog. Twitter allows you to communicate to individual or whole groups of people in short bursts. It can be used as a giant announcement board, or as a way to just keep those concerned posted about what you are doing, what you’ve discovered, or what you want to share.

I write a bi-monthly column over at The Apple you can read here. Since I now have two exclusive venues to pour my thoughts into I have decided to change the tone and format of Cal Teacher Blog just a little. Anyone who has read anything that I have ever written knows that I can be somewhat, what’s the word, verbose? Ok, fine, I like to talk. Can you imagine what my students have to endure? Believe it or not I had to take the written English PRAXIS (CSET) test four times before I passed. Can you figure out why?

So I'm taking my cues from all of the above. From now on I promise to write fewer words. Perhaps an abridged blog post will go down easier? To quote one of my all-time favorite films by Milos Forman of Peter Shaffer’s script from 1984:

Emperor Joseph II: My dear young man, don't take it too hard. Your work is ingenious. It's quality work. And there are simply too many notes, that's all. Just cut a few and it will be perfect.
Mozart: Which few did you have in mind, Majesty?

And again:

Emperor Joseph II: Well, there it is.


  1. Thanks for the link and for following me on Twitter. I'm finding Twitter a great way to feel a part of the larger community of people in education online. There is a lot of good sharing of ideas and a good bit of fun in the conversations. I think it will only get better too!

  2. Hi Cal Teacher,

    I found your blog at teacherlingo. I'm working on a community service project at MIT to run a nationwide contest in which students compete to create funny, creative videos teaching SAT vocabulary at

    I think we have the right incentives in place:
    we're giving away $600 in prize money & 1 free iTunes song for every 5 videos a contestant submits or refers (up to the first 1,000 video submissions). But we really need to get the word out for the Jan 1 start date.

    You seem like a popular voice in the internet education community, so I was hoping you would be 1) interested in getting your students/colleagues involved and 2) willing to publicize our event with a link at your blog. I realize this last request is a bit forward, but please do not be too offput by it.

    I'd be happy to provide more info about our event if you want to email me directly. Look forward to hearing from you.


  3. You're always on my "Best of" list!

  4. Kevin, thank you for including me in your Band of Bloggers -- it is always an honor to be on your list. I am also gratified to see that we both discussed brevity recently. If only it were as easy to do as to discuss.