Misc

Angels in the Architecture - when they used to build schools like cathedrals.

One of the side benefits of visiting high schools is that I end up going all over the city. This takes me to neighborhoods that I normally wouldn't have reason to visit. For a New York History wonk that can be pretty cool even if you just limit yourself to looking at the schools. A few of the schools I visited in the last couple of weeks before the new year were self contained whole building schools:
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Happy New Year 2019

I've never been much of a New Years person. I get up really early and so don't usually stay up late and more to the point, as any teacher knows, the year really goes from September through June with that really long much needed weekend that you regular folks call July and August tacked on to separate years. This whole January first thing is really more of a half time break or perhaps an intermission.
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Catskills Conf - Knitting for Good 2018

Two weekends ago I took a group of my first year students up to Catskills Conf, an annual event that I describe as "light tech conference with a focus on diversity and inclusion meets summer camp." I've written about the event before if anyone's interested in more details. As in past years, Devorah ran her knitting for good project. In each of the first two years of the project, attendees of Catskills Conf learned how to know and collectively knit, crocheted and assembled a blanket for Project Linux which provides hand made blankets to children in crisis.
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Advent of Code 2016

Once again, it's time for Advent of Code - a series of small programming problems released once a day. I wrote a bit about it last year and you can still find last years problems here. It's only day three but so far, all of the problems look really nice for students in APCS-A or any similar intro course. I'm thinking of looking at a couple of the problems this week with my class at Hunter.
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Hunter College - Honors CS

div.center {text-align:center;} It's been a while since my last post and a while since I started at Hunter. Time to share a bit about what I've been up to. One of the better kept secrets in New York City is Hunter College's computer science program. It's been around for years and it's been that way for years. In fact, when I was looking to get my masters degree back in the mid nineties I carefully researched all of the area's MS in CS programs.
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Leaving Stuyvesant

div.center {text-align:center;} Almost twenty six years. That's how long I've been a NYC public school teacher. Most of that time at my alma mater, Stuyvesant. A couple of years ago, the school paper wrote up an overview of my career. I re-posted it here. I'm somtimes amazed at where we are now and how we got here. Regulars here also know my frustrations. To Stuy, I'm an interchangeable, generic math teacher and the DOE has shown no interested in supporting what we've built.
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Advent of Code

div.center {text-align:center;} Has everyone seen Advent of Code? It's a site with a series of programming problems that are being revealed one a day, a la an advent calendar. You can read more about it here. I came to the party a little late so I'm only up to day 6. Each problem comes in two parts. The second is revealed after you complete the first.
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Finding the Bell Tower

No Edu-Rant today nor a clever lesson plan. I just thought I'd share an email exchange that cracked me up. We're out in Ann Arbor visiting our son Natan who is in his first year at Michigan. Devorah sent an email asking where we should meet. It turns out that Natan's last class of the day is Music Composition. Here's what followed: Natan:
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Something growing in the Hudson Valley

The Hudson Valley's a beautiful place, particularly during the Fall. We don't get up there as much as we should - usually just for apple picking and then for the New York Sheep and Wool Festival. It's a region with great food, hiking, natural beauty, history and more. So, what exactly is growing? The Hudson Valley Tech community. I first heard about what Hudson Valley was doing around Tech back at the August New York Tech Meetup.
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Coding schools - or why I chose NYCDA

Some of you might have noticed that a few months ago, I decided to affiliate myself with The New York Code and Design Academy or NYCDA. I took on the role of "Academic Director, Youth Programs." It's a part time gig, at least for now and I'm helping them develop their programs for middle and high school students. Why did I choose them? There are a number of coding schools with varying levels of hype around them.
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