Tag Archives: New Tech Network

Critiquing Uptown Funk Teacher

So this video by a teacher and school in the New Tech Network went viral this week. I can’t help but make some criticisms. Where is the content in this? How does this relate to the Common Core Standards? What are students learning? How is this preparing kids for college and careers? How is this activity helping students on their test scores?

Actually I realize that it is a theatre teacher and he is doing his job here (although shouldn’t we cut arts and humanities classes and spend more time propping up math and ELA skills).

So why, if this does not meet all of the things that teachers are constantly being told we must do has this video gone viral?

Because this video is about connecting with students, sharing passions with students, being weird with students, and having fun. It is about relationships with kids. The only videos about standards and testing that would go viral would be people critiquing them.

I guarantee that Scott Pankey’s students love him and I would gladly have my children in his class. So I say congrats to him and A. Maceo Smith New Tech High for showing the world what learning really can and should be!

It’s Time to Party Again!

Copyright by New Tech student Adrian Harris

Copyright by New Tech student Adrian Harris

This one goes out to all of my friends that teach in Michigan (although if anyone wants to “copy” and use in another state feel free and please let me know). We are bringing back the election project this fall. It will be called #MyParty14 and will focus on Michigan students designing their own political parties while studying the Gubernatorial election.

After picking the issues that they are passionate about, students will create their own political party, party platform, and make a 30 second commercial. Participating schools will host “primaries” to determine their school winner. School winners will compete in a state-wide election hosted by the New Tech Network and #michED.

More details will be forthcoming, but for right now reserve time in your class calendar for this project in October. There will be many resources and optional activities associated with project for you to choose the depth that you want to go. We also encourage schools to collaborate with each other through things like an online debate. Watch the #MyParty14 hashtag for details.