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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in IIMSE Blogging Veterans (2006)'s LiveJournal:

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Monday, June 18th, 2007
5:20 pm
Not sure what the plan is.  Do we post here or in our personal blog?  Just rounding out my first day here at Salesforce.com.

Funny story:  If you forget to lock your computer when you walk away from your desk, there is a standing security procedure here that if someone else walks by and notices your unlocked computer, then they log onto your e-mail and send a message to the entire floor saying "I am a dork."  

Have a good first week.

Current Mood: amused
Sunday, August 20th, 2006
11:11 am
Two weeks off...
I had to take a couple weeks off from everything. I was in such major overdrive that my body shut down. I'm still tired.

Today I'm going in to paint my classroom. I'm fortunate that I have my spouse and a couple of friends who will be helping me. I don't know what I would have done if they were not available.   I guess I would have had to do it myself.  This is so disheartening.  I still have to get my classroom ready - providing an enriched and encouraging classroom environment that stimulates learning.  Right...

I have been so disappointed/discouraged with how I've been treated by the OUSD system as a teacher. I find it very unreasonable that I have to paint my classroom one week before school begins. Painting is only part of the job - I have to patch holes in the walls of this classroom. There is graffiti on the walls and windows. There is a telephone installed inside a portable closet - where it shouldn't be. I look around the room and all I can think is that no one cared about this room or the environment the students and teachers were supposed to work in. It reflects a ghetto mentality that has become a way of thinking and living. There is such a low level of expectation of how things are supposed to be.

To get people out of that mentality the level of expectation has to be raised. People who work in Oakland Public Schools must be taught to have a high level of expecation for the students, teachers and themselves. Parents and students have to be taught to care about their environment and themselves.

I suppose I shouldn't grip, after all, I chose this.  I was offered a position in Fremont, that I wrote about a couple of weeks ago. It would have been a cush job.  I turned it down because I had already accepted this position.  I'm beginning to feel that my loyalty was misguided.  

Oh well, I strongly believe in the saying:  "You must be the change you want to see in the world."  It is from Mahatma Ghandi.  Perhaps I will be a small force to implement a bigger change.

See you around Cyberspace!

Current Mood: and discouraged
Tuesday, August 15th, 2006
9:00 pm

All the rage in blog poetry! Read all about it at Linda Sue Park's blog.
Monday, August 14th, 2006
6:59 am
The saga continues
I wish I was able to say "hi" one more time to each of you at End of Summer, but alas it was not meant to be. There were so many people at EOS that I wanted to talk to that I ended up missing many of you... I regret that I could not have stayed longer, but I had already made plans to go to the Oakland airport to pick up my gf's brother, and then drive to their parents house in Sonora for the extended weekend.

... and in no particular order (except for Diane), some "shout outs" to my posse:

Diane - blog queen incarnate - thank you for putting up with my OCD and needing constant feedback - I know I'm high maintenance so thank you for putting up with me (especially when I use too many or too few commas). You also helped me get through a rough patch I had this summer, and I can't even thank you enough for just being there to listen to me. And EOS, what was up with that?! I had no idea there was such a thing as a "Distinguished Fellow", and I was even more surprised that you chose me when I could easily count 3 others in this blog crew who I would bow down to for their insights and support besides yourself. I was very touched with your presentation - I just want you to know how much that meant to me - somehow I'm finding room for that poster in my classroom!!! Good luck with gaggle.net this year!!!

Andy M - Thanks for your kind ear whenever I needed it. Your spirituality helped keep my often nervous temperament at ease throughout the fellowship.

Jim V - You never cease to amaze me with your enlightened, and often humorous, stories about a variety of subjects - if you were being serious about running for mayor and it still looks feasible, look me up and I'll help campaign for you.

Gina - You rock girl! I can't say I envied setting up an entire conference for 1000s of people, but I do regret not having made time to go see it (always dog tired when I got home from work - not physically tired, but mentally exhausted). I will definitely go next year though!! Good luck with that guy Diane approves of (TGDAO - was that the acro we made for your bf??)

Andy S - Thanks for all of the help with my techno babble and helping me realize I'm not alone in the educational technology abyss.

Tom - I know we didn't see eye to eye much but you definitely helped me realize things I was too narrow-minded to see. For that I am eternally grateful.

Harj - Aggies 4 Lyfe!!! I need to learn how to be as cool, calm, and collected as you always seem to be. Congrats on your triathalon and surpassing your own expectations! (I agree with Diane that your name is BY FAR the easiest indian name I've ever had to learn)

Wanda - how did you come about writing a screenplay for STNG? I checked you out on IMDB - extremely cool... ka'pla!!

Sammy - I feel like I've gotten to be a part of your extended family just by reading your posts. Despite the stress and doing jumping jacks when you close your office door, I hope IISME was fun for you :)

Ken - my pi buddy (3.1415926535897932384626433..) Your posts seemed to generate the most comments from anyone - I think that goes to show how you can make these experiences reach all of us, despite where we are or what our background is (age, sex, culture, etc). Your students are very lucky to have someone who can reach out to all on different levels.

The rest - thank you for sharing your lives with me - you brought additional levity to my otherwise boring cube job.

I think IISME is one of the greatest summer experiences a teacher could have. When I compare how excited I am to go back to my classroom compared to my other teacher friends who didn't do IISME, I am very thankful to have been a member of this prestigious group.

I hope you all have a great 06-07, and I really hope we can keep in touch. I'm not just saying that - please do email me and let me know how you are and what you've been up to - cjohns@fremont.k12.ca.us, also in the IISME summer directory Alicia B emailed us earlier in the summer. I look forward to hearing from you, and hopefully I'll see you next summer (or at least read about you on another installment of the IISME blog!)

With much love,

-Clint Johns, aka ucdteach80

Current Mood: happy but equally sad
Friday, August 11th, 2006
12:53 pm
The Sign Off
I realize that sitting here that probably few of you will see this. I am still sitting here at my desk and I will be here until next Wednesday, making up hours. I just to say thank you to all of you out there. Yet once again I want to thank you for another wonderful summer in the virtual world. Good luck to all of you in the upcoming school year. Below is a short excerpt from my summer experience in the blogging community.

To me, blogging is like the coffee house of the 60’s, where the beatniks used to stand and recite their thoughts through poetry to a crowd. This poetry was used to reflect the speaker’s own take on the state of the world. Blogging has turned us into the beatniks of the modern millennium. These coffee houses have given way to the online communities. These online communities are organized to bring a group of like minded individuals together, so that they can share their thoughts and feelings. Through out the summer, I have shared my many thoughts on a variety of topics. The topics have varied from comparing drips in the ceiling to students in the classroom, to wondering why at times we are afraid to admit that we teach for a living.
11:47 am
Auf wiedersehen! Auf wiederhoren!
It means, until I see you again (sehen) and until I hear from you again (horen), unless my thirty years ago German class recollection fails me!

Thank you, IISME, Alicia, Julia and Shari! Thank you, Diane! and thank you fellow bloggers, wherever you may be!

I have one week in Vegas, and one week of ramp up meetings before the kids arrive the week after that. I'm going to cram a summer into the week in Vegas. After all, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!

Current Mood: melancholy
11:22 am
Thanks Everyone
Thanks everyone for truly enriching my summer.  I have thoroughly enjoyed all the interaction, encouragement, and support.

Diane, you are the best coach I have had at IISME.  You have a great balance of making blogging fun while holding our feet to the fire at the same time.  I hope you continue to coach the bloggers; it really is the best IISME experience.

May we all have a great year with awesome coworkers and amazing students.

9:45 am
Yesterday's Event
My mentor went to the EOS event and was very impressed at the number of businesses and teachers involved in IISME. We had a conversation regarding my experiences and I suggested that next year he may want to have a teacher set up a professional development sequence to improve the written communication in his company. He employs a lot of ESL workers and said that would be a good idea. I hope he follows through with it and takes advantage of the talent that is so apparent with the teachers in this program.

It's back to school world for me, this afternoon. Still have lots to do to prepare for the upcoming school year. I decided not to take that position offered to me at Fremont. There are too many unknowns. Even though it's a prep position, which can best described as cushy, there are too many unknowns. If the district is having financial the first thing to go are preps and electives. Also, I would be giving up 10 years of my experience on their salary scale.

Well, TTFN everyone! It's been a wonderful experience on and offline. I'll see you around the universe!


Current Mood: content
9:33 am
IISME bloggers,

The time, sadly, has come for us to say goodbye. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for opening my eyes and ears to the world. I hope that we can keep our posts open and our professional ties close.

Altogether, I think we've bonded in a manner atypical of other CG groups. You guys will be dearly missed.

Thank you, Diane, for making this CG group the best ever... no other CG group can compare. You've been an inspiration and a delight to work with (and you're pretty quick with those comeback one-liners!). I'm sure we'll stay in touch throughout the year. Just leave out the details of diaper-changing please.

Click on this link to view my favorite video about "Saying Goodbye":

- Ken

Saying goodbye, going away
Seems like goodbye's such a hard thing to say
Touching a hand, wondering why
It's time for saying goodbye

Saying goodbye, why is it sad?
Makes us remember the good times we've had

Much more to say, foolish to try
It's time for saying goodbye

Dont want to leave, but we both know
Sometimes it's better to go
Somehow I know we'll meet again
Not sure quite where, and I dont know just when
You're in my heart, so until then
Wanna smile, wanna cry
Saying goodbye

Current Mood: nostalgic
Thursday, August 10th, 2006
10:03 pm
I am so happy that you got the award for one of the Best Fellows!! You totally deserve it.

Diane, I thought your visual was hilarious -- nicely done. Although I would expect nothing less from the Blogging Queen!!

It was a fun time tonight at the EOS.
11:40 am
Here are some more links for donation sites:



Current Mood: contemplative
11:19 am
Compuer Teacher Position

A principal at an elementary school in Fremont approached me about a computer teaching position. It's a prep position, grades 1-6, and they are looking to fill it asap. I am tempted to bail out of Oakland but have this strong sense of duty. They are looking for a person with the Computer Concepts and Applications or Multiple Subjects credential.

If you are interested, I can give you particulars. Contact me at my email, jensaxa@sbcglobal.net.

10:41 am
Website for Donations
I hate begging for stuff. However, I've come across a website that others may find useful. It's called donorchoose.org. You list a proposal for an item you'd like to have or an experience you'd like your students to have. You provide information regarding pricing and hopefully a company or individual will donate the items to your classroom. There is, of couse, a registration process. They suggest that you keep the amount small. The smaller the item, the sooner it may be filled. I submitted two proposals for my classroom for two class sets of MindStorm projects focusing on robotics and renewable energy. Hopefully these will peak the interest of a mysterious benefactor!!!


Current Mood: contemplative
9:08 am
Important Stuff for the Last Days

I have so enjoyed getting to know all of you this summer. We really must have a karaoke/margarita party sometime!

Couple of things before we all go:

MICRO CENTER! I don't work for them, but I get their e-letter. They currently have 1Gig flash drives and SD cards for 17.99. I buy as many as I can afford to give out as prizes during teacher trainings. Another popular choice is the highlighters that erase...

www.girlsgotech.org The Girl Scouts of America have a really cool web initiative for getting girls more into math, science and technology. PLEASE check it out. Scouting changes lives!

again, I have really enjoyed knowing you all and intend to keep journaling, we'll see how that works out!

8:39 am
today's terrorism attempt from London airport
After reading the news about the thwarted attack, terrible tragic memories of 9/11 came to mind. I didn't know anybody personally that was affected by the attacks, but of course I knew people whose families were affected.

I'm so glad that this attempt was foiled because this was supposedly going to be bigger than the attacks from five years ago.

I'll try to keep this posting brief and refrain from talking about the somber feeling I'm sure we've all shared from 9/11. Ironically, I was planning on watching the movie
"World Trade Center" this weekend. Now, I definitely will.

When I travelled to New York three years ago, my girlfriend visited Ground Zero and paid homage to those who were victimized. As a fellow American and fellow human being, I recommend you to visit the former site of the Twin Towers someday. There are many mixed feelings when you approach the site... from sadness to awe to hope. At first, I had a hard time believing the media hype of "the 9/11 attack made us Americans stronger." But after visiting Ground Zero and seeing the physical and mental reconstruction, I'm now a believer.

I'm sure we all remember the initial shock from 9/11. We were all on our way to our classrooms getting ready to teach another day. My principal told my staff to go about our normal business without mentioning any of the attack to our students (of course, many of them were already informed). Did you guys make any special accomodations to your teaching on that day?

For those of you travelling (Molatte, especially) in the near future, please be careful.

- Ken
Wednesday, August 9th, 2006
11:14 am
Free lunch
Since my project was turned in last Thursday, I have no work to do. Today, I came in just to be taken out to lunch by my mentor and the not-so-scary ex-colonel. Tomorrow, I'm coming in to be fed lunch by and have a discussion with Mark Crowley the VP of the SBIRS program here at Lockheed. Fun stuff. I REALLY need to go to my classroom and make room for the dude I am sharing it with!!! Tomorrow is my last day!!!

Current Mood: ecstatic
9:55 am
CCPA Retreat
Well, we're all back home now and I'm a bit overwhelmed about what needs to be accomplished actually before Aug. 21st, when we meet with our advisory students. As we finished up yesterday, our principal outlined what we would have to do before the 21st and I watched our collective brains implode. One of our new teachers realized yesterday that she would be teaching Language Arts and Reading along with Social Studies. She thought she'd only be teaching Social Studies. She comes from teaching high school where she only taught one subject. I thought she was going to faint from the shock! We have three teachers who are new to the profession (emerging teachers). The rest have 1-10 years among them.

This retreat was a team building session. Actually, it was the first time we'd met each other and been together in the same place. I discovered that I am the veteran teacher on our staff w/ about 15 years experience in my pocket. I have been teaching the longest. I now feel that I have a responsibility towards my teaching community to assist our new and emerging teachers. What a responsibility!

Current Mood: and anxious
Tuesday, August 8th, 2006
11:54 pm
New group for IISME Bloggers using Gaggle.net this year
Follow this link: http://community.livejournal.com/iisme_gagglers/profile and click the link where it says "to join this community" or whatever.

Current Mood: enthralled
9:13 pm
One of these will be my newest baby!
Check em out! Here are the puppies~~

Shiba Inu is the breed. I am so excited. I saw them today and still smell like puppy breath (the sweetest smell in the world).

3:26 pm
the Lord giveth and Intel taketh
FYI... another round of layoffs here at the land of Intel.

Both of my cube neighbors got the axe. I tried to make them feel better by saying that I'm leaving the company too on Friday. Unfortunately, they won't make it to Friday.

They laughed halfheartedly when I told them that I'm being laid off. Then they said that at least I have my full-time job to look forward to in a few weeks. They both have nothing else to fall back on... except a semi-respectable severance package.

- Ken

Current Mood: sympathetic
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