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Showing posts from February, 2019

Easily Offended? Don't click!

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I am often amused at life's peculiar twists and turns. The way seemingly unrelated events transpire to create mischief at a later date often makes me smile when I look back. I had no idea what was in store for me today when I woke up. I'm glad it turned out the way it did. Also, I have never considered myself the easily offended type. I feel that I have a fairly realist view of the world. I also believe the power of words lies not in the words themselves, but rather how they are used, or misused. I hope you feel the same.

Today started like any usual Sunday. Church. Home for lunch. Put the boys down for nap time. Put the wife down for nap time. Circumstances dictated that I would need to take an unexpected road trip about two hours up the road to a meeting spot in South Carolina. I considered my options, and decided that rather than take out the T-tops and blast the stereo, I would purchase my first audio book.

Hi. My name is Itsthemitchell, and until today, I had never purch…

Fearless Teachers?

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Fearless: without fear; bold or brave; intrepid

The question I have been pondering today; do we need fearless teachers?

You know what... I think no. Hear me out.

Before I jump too far into this, I'm not talking about mortal fear. I do not think that kind of fear should be a normal part of your classroom experience. If you fear for your safety while at work, something needs to be done. Speak up to someone that can help.

Bold, brave, intrepid teachers all sound great to me, but fearless? I've got to say that every time I try something new in a class, there is a bit of fear. Fear of how will this be received by the students. Fear of if this will work the way I have it planned. Fear of the pacing taking too much or too little time. While these fears may not register on the same level as bungee jumping or flying cockroaches, it is fear nonetheless.

Fear is something that is normal, and is hardwired into our brains. The limbic system controls much of our emotions, including fear, an…

Get Your Creative Students Excited About Programming with CS First

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Back on December 23rd of 2018, I published a blog post about teaching coding with Google. It was basically a bullet point list of things I saw as I was looking at the website for the first time. Now I have had the time to implement it with my classes for a week. Here's my thoughts.

First, this is a very well laid out platform. There are videos with screencasts showing you exactly what you need to do in order to get started. They frequently use starter projects in Scratch. The starter projects typically include code that is either too complicated for where the students are, or is trivial for their ability if they have made it that far. Often the starter projects will include sprites or backgrounds premade for those particular projects.

The videos are high quality. All videos have captions available (in English, I have not looked for other languages) and have the ability to play back at a faster speed, as well as a lower speed. The instructions were clear, and incredibly easy to fo…

How to choose a STRONG password.

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tl;dr 1. Don't use a garbage password.  2. Use a strong password.  3. Use different passwords for each account. 4. Consider a password manager.  5. NEVER give your password to ANYONE!  6. Check out howsecureismypassword.net.  7. Check out haveibeenpwned.com
Hello Internet. I hope you are having a beautiful day. I'd like to talk to you about your passwords for a minute. I don't mean to be ugly about it, but I need to put this in no uncertain terms. Some of you have awful passwords. Terrible. Awful. Get your act together.
First, we're going to talk about what makes a terrible password. Splashdata, an internet security company, maintains a list of the most common passwords each year. Let's take a look at some of the perennial greatest hits.
#1. 123456 #2. password #3. 123456789 #4. 12345678
Let's jump around a bit...
#8. sunshine #9. qwerty #10. iloveyou #12. admin #18. monkey
#20. !@#$%^&* - This one looks interesting, but it's just 12345678 with the shi…