Wednesday, March 23, 2005


I'm compiling a list of suggestions and comments on how science teachers can improve pass rates on the graduation tests. If you have any lessons/ideas/labs you want to share, Email Me with the info, attachment, or link, and I'll post a round-up of all submissions.


I've linked to the Ohio Department of Education web page that references the new Science Academic Content Standards. Over the next few weeks, I hope to provide more information about how the graduation test will affect the classroom teacher, and how to best help students achieve a passing (or better) score.

I'm adding a new feature - the Educator Website of the Month. April is the first month, and it's fitting that I'm spotlighting a long-time educator whose site is absolutely amazing - and full of useful resources, including demonstrations and lesson plans he has developed.

Heck's Physics is the offspring of Dick Heckathorn. Richard Heckathorn is a Physics Teacher at Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy. He has long been a leader and mentor in science education at the local, state, and national levels.

Among the awards he has received are:
Jennings Scholar 1965 - 1966

Shell Merit Fellow
Cornell University
Summer 1969

Presidential Award
Excellence in Science Teaching
Ohio - 1987

Distinguished Teacher
Berea City School District
His publications include:

"On Selecting a New Text" - Physics Teacher, Vol 20, No.8 (5527) 1982)
"What Do I Really Expect of a Physics Laboratory Manual" - Physics Teacher, Vol 22, No.4 (226) (1984)
"An Evaluation of High School Physics Laboratory Manuals" - Physics Teacher, Vol 22, No. 4 (222-226) (1984)
"A Density Demonstration" - Physics Teacher, Vol 25, No. 1 (39) (1987)
"Retraining Teachers in Physics" - Physics Teacher, Vol 28, No. 4 (230-231) 1990
"Twice Yearly Column" - Ohio Section of AAPT Newsletter, (1984-2001)

Dick's accomplishments are many, and would take up considerable space. I urge you to explore Heck's Physics site ASAP.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


I did have to go out of town for a funeral. As deaths go, this one was easy - relatively quick, just like the person had told everyone she wanted. Her expressed wishes were followed to the letter.

It was also a quality experience, as the extended family all gathered for several days of food, consolation, and family story-telling. They're of Irish heritage, so those stories were fueled by coffee and Irish whisky. The wake was memorable and noisy, just like we like it.

One of the grandchildren is a bagpiper, so she received a wonderful send-off.

I'll be posting again by tomorrow, when I catch up on sleep.