technical difficulties...

i am writing this post on behalf of our school's internet access. i am frustrated and upset that if you try to view this blog while you are here at school, you may not be able to actually SEE all of the content (such as videos or other links) due to random blocking of entire categories of sites, without regard to who uses them or how they are used.

for instance, line rider may or may not work, depending on the time of year and what kind of access your user log-on has been granted. it keeps getting blocked, then cleared for access, blocked, then cleared for access. the same thing goes for leaving comments here on-line. sometimes it works, other times, BLOCKED. we like line rider. it's a game, but you draw lines that a little guy rides along. i teach art! we draw lines! this is something educationally relevant to us! should we NOT also get to have fun while we are learning? i guess not... :(

i was talking with another teacher yesterday and discovered that YouTube is now blocked, under some general category named "K-8." does that mean that the high school can access this, but us lowly underlings cannot? is that fair? granted, there is a fair amount of YouTube content that is inappropriate - i understand that. but a lot of content there can also be extremely relevant, useful, and educationally sound. i personally use Google video to upload content for use here at school. how long until that, too, is blocked?

lastly, if you are here, you have NOT been blocked from my blog (obviously). however, you may not be able to get to anyone else's blog! last time i tried, i couldn't get to Mr. Leban's blog, or to Luisa's pock-it palz blog. that's just ridiculous, since Mr. Leban's blog is his school site that he uses with his students (just as I do with mine!), and Luisa uses her blog to post images of her artwork, which she shares with students when she comes to speak to the sixth graders. neither site is in any way inappropriate. so why are they blocked???

it's very frustrating for me as a teacher to try to integrate technology that you students use on your own at home outside of school, only to be thwarted by some vague general block. we COULD be doing things at school that are exciting and new and motiviating, but instead we'll just stick to the same old stuff that's been going on for years. what do you think about that?!


is this art?

...so, Mr. Leban and I got some of those "grow-your-own" toys from some friends of ours way back at Christmastime, and we finally decided to try it out. (The one on the left is a "grow-your-own cowboy", and the one on the right is a "grow-your-own fashion police" character...)

I'm watching these weird little creature-things expand and contort as they grow to "600 times their original size!" (as the package claims - but I am skeptical), and I was staring, wondering who actually spends time thinking up this kind of stuff? There has to be some kind of product designer/artist who makes up the original concept and draws out sketches (or tiny test-sculptures) for these weird expandable figures...

So I guess what I'm wondering is - is this art? And then I thought, "Hey, what a great question to ask my art students!"

Want some extra credit? Post here! Tell me what YOU think.


Check this out!

Check out this stop-motion video by Jake & Julian. They did it all in ONE night - at our Evening with the Arts celebration here at school last night:

Let me know what you think!



This is a test post of a video I uploaded to google video. It should be my airplane home from NYC taking off. Let's see if it works:

Yayy! It worked!
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