Monthly Archives: May 2017

Max & Charlie Figuring It All Out

Max & Charlie book

Max & Charlie by Zack Lieberman and Louis Neubert

This was a great read. From the very first page, the artwork captures the imagination of the main characters. It is bright and colourful and stylistically stunning.

The opening daydream shows a young boy pretending to be a space-warrior. His dog, a trusty companion in a mission to save the universe. They make a good team, but you can see that the dog isn’t impressed with all of the imaginary play. He just wants to get outside.

When they do go outside, Max pulls on the leash and basically drags Charlie through the streets and parks on New York City. Charlie, seeing that other dogs are fine off of the leash, decides that Max might be as well. But the second he unclicks the lead, Max takes off. Charlie spends the rest of the book chasing him.

The two main characters discover all sorts of interesting things about the city. Charlie meets a variety of characters who all share their philosophy of life and the universe with him. Themes of cooperation, the beauty that surrounds us, and finding your purpose abound in the work.

It’s one of the stories that when you finally get to the last page and close the book, you have a smile on your face.

For Charlie, the journey might have been long and annoying. It started with a simple mistake that had unforeseen consequences. It wore him down and tired him out. But, in the end, he learned something. It was worth it. The journey showed him something he needed to see and he is now richer for it.

Perhaps that is what life is like for us all. It’s about the journey and what we learn along the way.

My List of 2017 Reads – my detailed annual reading log

 

DJing TONIGHT in Sarnia

I will be DJing at Republik in Sarnia tonight.

Come on out for a great evening of music and dancing. I will be spinning Top 40, R&B, EDM, and hip-hop. As always, I will throw in some old school classics to keep the party moving.

I hope to see you there!

WHERE: Republik – 216 Front St N, Sarnia, ON.
WHEN: Saturday May 27th
DOORS: 10:00 p.m.

The Flash – Stop Motion

The Flash – Stop Motion (Justice League)

Wally West is the fastest man alive.  If you are a fan of the television show, this version of The Flash is a little bit different. In this incarnation, West, is the only Flash. His uncle, Barry Allen, passed away a few years back.

I was really surprised at all of the violence in this story. The villain kills several people but the descriptions of the killings and the sound effects in this audio book make it all the more creepy.

It turns out that the villain is a speedster who can travel faster than the speed of light. Even worse, this monstrosity was created in a lab and he simple cannot be controlled or stopped. It’s up to West to save the day, with a little help from the Martian Manhunter, Super-man, Green Lantern, and Plastic Man, and Wonder-Woman.

This Graphic Audio presentation features full cast narration and sound effects. The series describes itself as a “movie in your mind.” I think all books have that power. I am a big fan of audio books and find that they don’t really need to be dressed up so much. It’s almost as if they were trying too hard to make this different and, pardon the pun, flashy.

I like how the story dealt with the speed force. It was a different take on it from what we have seen in the television series. I also like how they tried to tackle the science behind it. It might not always work, but I was able to get lost in the story and enjoy a good super hero tale. This book is also available as a prose novel if you would rather read than listen.

My List of 2017 Reads – my ongoing reading log for the year

Teaching Tip Tuesday Archive

Welcome to Teaching Tips.

This is an archive page that features all of the teaching tips that have been posted. Please visit this page often as it will be continually updated with each new tip.

Below you find the tips in the order they have appeared on the site.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, or would like to write a guest post for Teaching Tip Tuesdays, please leave me a comment below, send me an email, or get at me on Twitter

Teachers helping teachers is what it is all about.

Continue reading Teaching Tip Tuesday Archive

Photographic Tours

I love finding new places to run. I often take my camera along with me and stop every few minutes to snap a picture. This way I can present you with a photographic story that captures the scenery of my run.

This page is a table of contents for these Photographic Tours. I will continue to update this list every time I post a new visual tour.

I hope you enjoy these Photographic Tours. I certainly enjoy bringing them to you and look forward to sharing new ones with you soon.

Angus McKenzie Trail – St. Thomas, Ontario

Archie Coulter Conservation Area – St. Thomas, Ontario

Ausable River Cut Conservation Area – Thedford, Ontario (Grand Bend)

Avon Trail – Stratford, Ontario

Beamer Memorial Conservation Area – Grimsby, Ontario

Bechtel Park – Waterloo, Ontario

Beverly Swamp – Flamborough, Ontario

Bob McMullen Linear Trail – Cambridge, Ontario (Exercise Trail)

Brock’s Route Rail Trail – Copetown, Ontario

Carolinian Trail – Pinery Provincial Park, Ontario

Chesney Wilderness Area Trail – Woodstock, Ontario

Clark Wright Conservation Area – Middlesex County

Coldstream Conservation Area – Ilderton, Ontario

Coves Trail – London, Ontario

Devil’s Creek – Cambridge, Ontario

Dirt Runway – Northern Ontario

Dorchester Mill Pond – Dorchester, Ontario

Dumfries Conservation Area – Cambridge, Ontario

Dundas Valley – Hamilton, Ontario

Embro Conservation Area – Embro, Ontario

Fanshawe Park  Lake Trail – London, Ontario

Farm Trail – Binbrook, Ontario

George Nicholson Trail – St. Catherines, Ontario (Port Weller)

Gibbons Park – London, Ontario

Grand Trunk Trail – St. Marys, Ontario

John Lawson Trail – Ingersoll, Ontario

Historic St. Marys – St. Marys, Ontario

Hyde Park Rotary Trail – London, Ontario

Kain’s Woods – London, Ontario (Shore Road) and (Main Entrance) and (Kains to Warbler Woods)

Komoka Conservation Area – Komoka, Ontario – (Main Trail) and (Side Trail)

LaFarge 2000 Trail – Flamborough, Ontario

Laurier Woods – North Bay, Ontario

Lambeth Centennial Park – Lambeth, Ontario

Lions Lake Trail – Floradale, Ontario

Lorne C. Henderson – Petrolia, Ontario

Marguerite Omston Trailway: Walter Bean Grand River Trail – Kitchener, Ontario

Marsh Trail at Rondeau Provincial Park – Chatham-Kent, Ontario

Meadowlilly Woods – London, Ontario

Medway Valley  – London, Ontario – (Side Trail) and (Western University Trail head)

Merrit Trail (Mountain Locks Park) – St. Catherines, Ontario

Mill Pond Trail – Cambridge, Ontario

Moffat Creek – Cambridge, Ontario

Niagara Escarpment – Grimbsy, Ontario

Perch Creek – Sarnia, Ontario

Pinafore Park – St. Thomas, Ontario

Princess Point – Hamilton, Ontario

Red Hill Valley – Hamilton, Ontario – Albion Falls, King’s Forest

Riverside Park – Cambridge, Ontario

Roth Park – Woodstock, Ontario

Scenic Trails – Ingersoll, Ontario

Short Hills Provincial  Park – Pelham, Ontario – Black Walnut Trail , Swayze Falls Trail

Shriner’s Woodlot – Niagara Falls, Ontario

Sifton Bog – London, Ontario – Boardwalk trail and Nature Trail

Southcrest Ravine – London, Ontario

Southpoint Trail at Rondeau Provincial Park – Chatham-Kent, Ontario

Spicebush Trail at Rondeau Provincial Park – Chatham-Kent, Ontario

Springbank Park: Terry Fox Parkway – London, Ontario

Springwater Forest – St. Thomas, Ontario

St. Marys Loop Trail – St. Marys, Ontario

Stoney Creek of The Thames – London, Ontario

Thames Park – London, Ontario

Thames River Trail – St. Marys, Ontario

Thames Valley Parkway – London, Ontario

The Pines (Mountain Bike Trail) – Woodstock, Ontario

Tulip Tree Tail at Rondeau Provincial Park – Chatham-Kent, Ontario

Vansittart Woods – Blanford, Ontario

Warbler Woods – London, Ontario

Warwick Conservation Area – Warwick, Ontario

Waterfront Trail  – Grimbsy, Ontario

Wawanosh Wetlands – Sarnia, Ontario

Westminster Ponds – London, Ontario

Windsor Waterfront Trail – Windsor, Ontario

Youth Start Trail – Woodstock, Ontario

Tim Hortons Museum – Store 1 (Hamilton)

Tim Hortons is one of the most beloved businesses in Canada.

Memory Lane

It got its start with a small coffee shop in my hometown of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Memories from the 70s and on

In order to commemorate its history, the very first store has been renovated to include a small museum.

Memory Lane Aisle

There are items to show how the franchise has grown and developed over the past 50 years.

Timbit Cutter

Here is the Timbit cutter tool that was used to create the miniature donuts we all love.

Walnut Crunch

Walnut Crunch used to be my favourite full-sized donut.  I liked that it was rectangular in shape. It seemed bigger than the regular circular donuts. And it was chocolate with nuts. Unfortunately, they no longer make these donuts.

Sink and Dryer

This location even has hi-tech bathrooms. The sink faucet has air dryers built right into it. The bars that angle out to each side, blow warm air to dry your hands. I haven’t seen anything like this anywhere else. It’s a great design.

Store 1

Store #1 opened on this day, May 17th, back in 1964.

Tim Horton Statue

Tim Horton was a hockey player and is immortalized with this statue. This plaque gives a little bit of information about the installation.

Tim Horton Plaque

Tim Hortons is a cultural phenomenon and a beloved Canadian institution. And it all got its start a few blocks from where I used to live in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Binbrook Skatepark

binbrook-water-tower

How cool is it to have a skatepark under a water tower?

binbrook-mini-ramp

With a mini ramp that is the perfect size for my abilities?

grind-blocks

With some cool grind ledges,

launch-ramp

launch ramps,

quarter-pipe

quarter-pipe transfers,

rail

multi-leveled rails,

spine-transfer

and a spine?

This is definitely one of my favourite skateparks. It’s mostly because of the near perfect half-pipe. We need more of those at skateparks. It’s rare for me to find one that is so well suited to my limited abilities too.

It’s well worth the drive to Binbrook!

Want to see more?

Skatepark Visual Tours – over two dozen great skate spots

Fresh Kils and Emotionz Tour (London, ON)

Fresh Kils and Emotionz

I am proud to be part of this bill. I will be holding it down on the 1s and 2s all night long.

Fresh Kils is a seasoned performer and someone you need to see live. He is absolutely incredible.

Emotionz hails from Vancouver and has been making moves as a rapper, DJ, and beatboxer for years now.

Presented to you by Apex Live and Soundstream Multimedia, Vancouver based rapper/beat boxer Emotionz is coming to The Grinning Gator in London, Ontario for a night you don’t wanna miss!

With special guest Fresh Kils banging out beats on the mpc. Other artists on the bill will be Zick, TempoMental, Del Reze, Sunshyne and much more! Hosted by Jym Fur-aira. DJ for the night, Chase March. 

Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 @ the door. THIS IS A 19 + event ID REQUIRED Tickets also available online at Universe.com

Check the Facebook Event Page for more information.

WHAT: Fresh Kils and Emotionz Tour
WHEN: May 13, 2017
WHERE: Grinning Gator – 391 Richmond St. London, ON.
DOORS: Open at 9:00
TICKETS: $10 in advance, $15 at the door

Educators Wear Many Hats

Educators Need To See Themselves As

Here are some of the many hats that teachers wear.

Researchers

I read articles on education nearly every day. I seek out books from the library to help me in my teaching practice, and I continually look for ways to improve in the classroom.

I found this graphic from one of the dozen educational blogs I follow. You can read the original post by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano here. 

I want to look briefly at the other seven areas she highlights.

Adventurers

I try new things in the classroom all the time. I don’t stick to the tried-and-true methods because they’re really is no such thing. Every class has a different dynamic and things that work one year might not work the next. I constantly redesign my instruction and am not afraid to try new things. This also serves as a model for the students. We can all step outside of our comfort zones, experience new things, and grow.

Scientists

Science is my least favourite subject but I appreciate the metaphor here. We can test out new things and see what works. We can move beyond our limited senses and not just take things for what they are.

Storytellers

Nothing connects with people more than a well-told story. If we can figure out ways to bring storytelling into our lessons, our students will be more engaged. Story might even be the nature of reality (Yes, I am still working on this theory and hope to flesh it out for you all soon)

Teachers

We must have a passion for teaching and demonstrate a dedication to life-long learning. And we can have our students teach each other and even us.

Parents

Those of us who are parents understand this one. We have a duty of care, but it goes far beyond that. We can be a positive role model for our students. Some of the kids in our class might not have a father-figure at home. I understand that and try my best to connect with these kids and show them that I care about them.

Pioneers 

Have the spirit to explore uncharted territory. Try something that has never been done. Know your students, find ways to connect, and get creative.

Innovators 

I’m not afraid to fail in the classroom. There is a mantra in teaching, “If something doesn’t work, commit to trying it three more times.” I have lived by this mantra and have figured out how to be successful with new approaches. Sometimes I need to tweak the original idea or execution, but I am committed to innovate.

Let’s Create the Best Classrooms Possible

Teaching can’t stay in the past. We need to move on from old and outdated methods. We need to be pioneers, to innovate, and to continue to further our own learning, We need to incorporate new research into our teaching practice. And we can never lose out sense of adventure.

Teaching Tip Tuesday – inspiration from my classroom to yours.

Stay Driven (Motivation and Inspiration from a Rapper)

Stay Driven by D-O

Stay Driven by Duane D.O. Gibson

D.O. aka Defy the Odds is a rap artist who set a Guinness World Record for the longest freestyle ever, 8 hours and 45 seconds. He has released countless albums and dropped several music videos.

When I saw this book at the library, I thought it was worth the read. As I worked my way through it, it was obvious that it was written for teenagers who are looking for some motivation and inspiration. That makes sense since I found it in the teen section.

Here are a few of the takeaways I took from reading it.

Visualize 

D.O. tells the story of Biggie’s first album for Bad Boy. Apparently, Puff Daddy thought the album needed something else before he released it. It needed a single. So, he masterminded the idea of “Juicy” and asked Biggie to talk about making it big in rap. At the time. Biggie didn’t have all the riches he mentioned in this song. “It was all a dream” as he says in the lyrics. But it was a dream that came true. Puffy knew they needed a single. Biggie went along with it. And it was almost as if they visualized it into existence.

Play with Words

“Over the year I’ve created a rhyming database in my mind. It started when I created my own rhyming dictionary – this was before I found out there were actual rhyming dictionaries. The process of writing my own dictionary helped build my rhyming database.”

What a cool idea! D.O. also talks about how he would read the dictionary to help improve his vocabulary.

Don’t Coast

“I’ve learned that it’s not the talented people who success. Ironically, a lot of talented people don’t success. I’ve seen it time and time again.

These people think they can coast on their talent and not try as hard as everyone else. The problem is, hard workers pass them by.”

D.O. admits that when he started rapping, he wasn’t very good. But he worked at it. There were rappers out at the time that were better than him, but very few of them achieved the success he did. It all came down to work ethic. And D.O. had that in droves.

Be Respectful of Women

D.O. tells a story in the book about losing a rap battle to a female MC. The match was very close and the judges wanted to hear two extra rounds to determine the winner. He could have torn her apart by saying some sexual rhymes, making fun of her weight, or he clothes. These are all fair when it comes to rap battles. However, he said, “It just didn’t feel right to insult her. It just wasn’t my style. I decided that when I wrote songs about women, I’d tell stories from my perspective.”

D.O. lost that battle, but he got invited to an after-party where he made a very important business contact. When he looked around the party, he noticed that the person who did go on to beat that female rapper, wasn’t in attendance. It turns out that he wasn’t invited, because the female host didn’t like this style. She liked D.O.’s though.

Stay Positive

D.O. stayed positive and it opened all sorts of doors for him. He worked hard and achieved his dreams. That is something we can all learn from.

My List of 2017 Reads – a detailed reading log (continually updated all year)

I’m in a Music Video (Y’allready Know)

Traffimatics featuring Mad Hattr with DJ Chase March, “Y’allready Know”

I’m very proud to be part of this track. Mad Hattr is one of the best producers in the underground hip-hop scene and has been grinding for years. He is nice on the mic and brought the fire with this production.

Traffimatics is an up-and-coming emcee and I have had the pleasure of rocking with him at several live performances and shows. It was nice to be able to work on this track with him.

I am available to scratch hooks on your songs, guest host your mixtape, or craft custom mixes of your songs. Having a deejay on your track is a good look for hip-hop. If you’d like to work, please contact me.

I hope you enjoy the track.

Please share it, give it a like, and support underground, independent hip-hop.

May the Posts be With You

Chasing Content (1)It’s time to go exploring!

Let’s dig through the archives and blow the dust off some posts you might have missed.

Let’s get ready for some annual events that happen each May.

Let’s Chase some Content!

You can read all of the posts from last May,

or just these favs . . .

Trilliums on the Trail Side

I love the short period of time when the trillium flower is in bloom. It is absolutely beautiful to go on a trail run and see these flowers alongside the trail. Keep an eye out for them this month. They aren’t in bloom for long and you won’t want to miss our provincial flower in all of its glory.

The Inner Game of Work

A great book that has a lot to say about education if you read it with your teacher hat on. It wasn’t written for teachers at all, however. Some of the best books about education aren’t. This book can help you manage employees, work with your team, or help you in your coaching. Highly recommended.

Hip-Hop Anonymous

This show was a lot of fun. I love the poster too and seeing my name as the DJ for the night.

Free Comic Book Day

Keep an eye out for this event which is always the first Saturday of May. Your local comic book shop will have special events, activities, and free books and giveaways. I’ll see you at the shops on May 6th!

Happy Star Wars Day

May the 4th. May the force by with you. Such a great pun! Here are all of the posts I have done on Star Wars too!

Thanks for Chasing Content with me!

Please click on the above links to read some of the best of Silent Cacophony from last year at this time. Don’t let great content get buried in the archive. Thanks!