Category Archives: Teaching

Only Connect

Governor Ron DeSantis’s website includes a page devoted to his proposed Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees (W.O.K.E.) Act. Florida’s tax dollars are paying for courses that make kids hate America, he says. Critical race theory has invaded … Continue reading

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The Buzz on Vergil

(for Trevor Thoms) I can’t close out our week of bees without sharing what is possibly my favorite poem, The Georgics, by the Roman poet Vergil. I know, this might strike you as a stodgy and obscure choice, but believe … Continue reading

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Teaching Vietnam Vets

I was a naïve girl of 24 teaching English 101 in the spring of 1975 at Kent State University. I had already taught freshman composition for a semester, and I had been a student teacher at McKinley High School in Canton, … Continue reading

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What I Learned Today

I was looking up Latin words for Christmas songs to share with my class tomorrow, our last regular meeting before the holiday break. For “In Dulci Jubilo,” (commonly sung in English as “Good Christian Men, Rejoice!”), I kept finding Latin … Continue reading

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Latina Vivit?

In case you haven’t seen it, here’s a column I wrote for the Cleveland Plain Dealer and its online version,, regarding the election. As you might guess, the responses have been very interesting. I received a weird and bitter … Continue reading

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Iste Est Magister Stultorum

Wheelock’s Latin, the textbook my students and I use, quotes a lot of Roman wisdom. Today a student and I were translating this sentence, which frequently gives students trouble: Non solum eventus hoc docet—iste est magister stultorum—sed etiam ratio. It … Continue reading

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Operant Conditioning

You most often train dogs with treats to reinforce their behavior. My husband has a habit of “dropping” bits of food for our dog Roxie when he’s eating. Then he acts disappointed when she begs. “John,” I say. “She was trained. … Continue reading

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Getting Things Done!

Today being one of my first days off from school (the semester actually ends on Friday with my last final, but it begins to feel like vacation already), I had a mental list of nagging things to attend to. How happy … Continue reading

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“Stories Matter. Many Stories Matter”

  While reading Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s epic novel Americanah, I checked out YouTube for a glimpse of her and found two TED talks. One’s on feminism, and the other is called “The Danger of a Single Story.” In the “story” … Continue reading

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On Rape, Date Rape, and What Sensible, Well-Mannered Girls Do

  In about 1995, I was writing a profile of the education writer Jonathan Kozol (Death at an Early Age, Savage Inequalities) for the alternative weekly Cleveland Edition. I was and am a big fan. I had read all his … Continue reading

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