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greg.... i was kind put back reading your post. i understand where you are coming from but i think you are confused about the woodworking journal.. have you ever looked at one? it is chopped FULL of projects. calculation of the board feet needed to build, the math involved to accurately make a project, measurements, additions of fractions and decimals, all the different elements of mathematics that are involved in woodworking. (the magazine district administrator just had a cover story on the vocational arts and its importance)
you then mention staying with state of the art technology and going to a robotics contest... math involved there... measurements, addition of fraction/decimals, calculations of what is needed to move the robot... you can actually build a robot out of woodworking materials by using syringes and pneumatics.
woodworking is getting thrown in the back hall with industrial arts. Ind Arts are now using technology embedded elements in plasma cutters, CNC, CIM, Inventor, etc...
woodworking journals are packed full of project based learning..similar to intel's teach to the future course. it doesnt matter the material or journal or even if it is a comic book they are reading. it is the whole not applying what they are learning to the educational environment and using what is being read and incorporating it into the instruction. whether it be math and science skills, graphics, storyboarding, woodworking, or robotics.
i was just told today... that i was looking at a situtaion from a technical side and not an instructional side.
innovation... doesnt have to be high tech. take an origami and have them digitize it in MS Paint.
communicating and being visible... visibility is good, but it is just lip service and show walking around the building or do you buy the custodian a coke and ask about their weekend and sing happy birthday to the lunch lady in front of the kids?

everything you read has benefit in improving yourself and who you manage/lead (i very loosely tie these two together because there is a huge difference)

scott posted in one of the top ten blogs a bit back... you can tell a good teacher, take them out to a tree with nothing and no materials... and they will teach the kids something.

some of my happiest days teaching were in a middle school classroom teaching....woodworking.

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