My Week Ending 2021-04-25

Here’s a summary of some of the things I learned and published this week.


You can follow my daily readings as they happen here.  Below are a selected few, with commentary, from the past week.


  • It was sad to see Art in the Park cancelled again this year. It’s always a big event that gets you into the Willistead Manor grounds and to explore the artwork. It always seemed to rain though…
  • Browser developers are never done. In this case, it’s ditching the browser history in Chrome for something called Memories


  • A blast from my personal past. Our backyard neighbour is hosting a Professional Women Summit
  • It’s the reality for many who don’t have enough desks in the house – student learning moves to the dining room table


  • COVID-19 hits London, Ontario schools
  • If you’re looking for a career change in Ontario, here are some jobs that are paying over $100 000


  • There are places to go if you suspect that someone has grabbed your password. Or, to check that they didn’t
  • If your kids don’t have you enough already, use this application to give them a mathematics question to answer before they can use their devices


  • An interesting opinion piece from TVO explaining the effectiveness of the Premier over the time with the pandemic
  • An interesting look at how Vincent Van Gogh handled nature in his worki


  • This looks really interesting and shows that the Ontario Art Education Association are staying relevant to its members
  • If I was still looking after technology needs for the classroom, I’d definitely have one of these on order to evaluate


  • If you’re thinking about getting an Ad blocker, there is a great article to read. If you’re not, why not?
  • This Linux fan did a double take when I read that Microsoft might soon be embracing this in Windows 10

Blog Posts on
doug … off the record

My daily contributions to this blog are linked below. If you’re looking for a week in review for doug–off the record, you came to the right place.

#FollowFriday – April 23, 2021

voicEd Radio

On this week’s show, Stephen Hurley and I chatted about Cultivating learning and community on and off line

The show, stored as a podcast is available here:

  • Deb Weston – @DPAWestonPhD
  • Lisa Ann Floyd – @lisaannefloyd
  • Steven Floyd – @stevenpfloyd
  • Anne Marie Luce – @turnmeluce
  • Mike Washburn – @misterwashburn
  • Beth Lyons – @MrsLyonsLibrary

Opening Song:

Closing Song:

All of the podcasts are archived here. The show is broadcast LIVE almost every Wednesday morning at 8:45 on voicEd Radio.

Technology Troubleshooting

A couple of years ago, royalty around here decided that we need to keep the people from out of town off the grass at the Navy Yard Park and fishing for Lake Whitefish in designated areas.

So, up went signs, bylaw officers on patrol and a big fence to keep the nature in. Does anyone remember the Five Man Electrical Band?

Well, the fish are running and the fences are back up – but repurposed in the time of COVID. The pages, instead of making one big wall are not turned 90 degrees to create socially distanced fishing areas.

I would have taken a picture but the places were full of people fishing.

Video of the Week

Is it a sign of a poor plan that something like this had to be created?

Photo of the Week

Last week, I showed what social distancing looked like if you were a tulip.

Now that the enhanced policing rules have been relaxed, the tulips are ignoring the rules.

Thanks for reading.

Please join me daily for something new and, hopefully, interesting for you. I honestly and truthfully appreciate your few moments reading my thoughts. Time willing, this summary appears every Sunday afternoon.

Be safe.


This blog post was originally posted at:

If you find it anywhere else, it’s not original.

Whatever happened to …

… homerooms?

I’d forgotten about this but, fortunately, Sheila Stewart didn’t and put it forth to me as a suggestion for a Sunday topic. I think it’s a good one.

When I first went to high school, I was in 9A. Room 239. I can even remember the name of my homeroom teacher. All of us in the homeroom were in the Business and Commerce option and so travelled as a pack from most class to class. Then, I was in 10A, 11A, 12A, 13A. We were essentially the same group except for Grade 13 as many people had left the school at the end of Grade 12 for College or the world of work.

When I got my first teaching job, I ended up taking over a Grade 12 homeroom for someone who had left the school. It was a bit out of the ordinary. Normally, first year teachers got a Grade 9 homeroom and the philosophy was to grow with the kids as they worked their way through their school years. Grade 12 was a challenge as I was 23 at the time and only a few years older than the students. So, it was a little hard to sympathize with some of their challenges in school and life because I was or had experienced them. Yeah, I thought an hour of Mathematics homework nightly was cruel and unusual punishment.

My second year got me a Grade 9 homeroom and it was indeed fun. You got to know everyone; I was there early and could help with homework. The primary reason for the organization was to listen to the national anthem, announcements, and take attendance. Every now and again, we’d “hold homerooms” to do some activities to build team or character. There were also homeroom challenges for spirit and fund raising. We’d decorate the room and the hallway and the neat thing was that their lockers were all together, right outside the room. It wasn’t uncommon to go into the hallway and usher the stragglers in for announcements. My mailbox would periodically be filled with appointment sheets to visit guidance counsellors or, gasp, the vice-principal.

Unlike my high school where homerooms were organized by the program that you were attending, ours was organized alphabetically by last name. As a result, we had a collection of people with all different destinations once they left the school.

Things do change after a while and homerooms went away. Instead, students would report to their first period classes where attendance was taken and national anthem and announcements taken.

For a Sunday, how is your memory?

  • do you remember your high school homeroom? Or did you just go to your first period class?
  • do you think the change was made for efficiency; after all, it cut out the travel time from homeroom to first class
  • do you ever run into former students who recall the four or five years with the same friends?
  • of course, all of this assumes that it was all positive. Were there times that being with the same students was a challenge for some?
  • did you ever get one of those invitations for a 1:1 with the vice-principal?
  • if you were queen/king for a year, would you reinstate homerooms or would you maintain the status quo?
  • would you agree that homerooms model the elementary school experience and the lack of them models the college/university style?
  • how would a homeroom work in the days of COVID and online learning?

How are your homeroom memories? Please share your thoughts in the comments below. Both Sheila and I would love to read them.

This is a regular Sunday post and the past posts are all available here. If you have an idea for a future post, reach out to me or leave your idea in this Padlet.

OTR Links 04/25/2021

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.