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The hot rumor at school is that I got a tat this past weekend.


During my 2nd period Geometry class the kids wanted to see it. I showed them and they wanted to know why I put that ribbon around the pi sign. I explained that there were two reasons: First, it represents infinity, and pi is infinite and second it is a mobius strip. Of course nobody knew what a mobius strip was so I threw out the plans, got out rolls of adding machine tape and we made mobius strips. It was a blast watching the kids try to figure out how there could only be one side on the paper and how if you cut it down the middle you still only have one strip. Even the kids who don’t get involved on a daily basis were actively participating.

The best part for me was explaining why I chose this particular design. I explained that, in my mind at least, if you are going to permanently mark your body it should have meaning, not just a design that you might not care for a few years down the road. While the kids were working on their strips I heard two girls commenting on how they were re-thinking plans for getting tats on their 18th birthdays. One of my seniors who has a large band tat on his bicep told the other kids that he wishes he’d waited, that after two years he didn’t think it was as cool as it once was.

They pay me to teach math, but I live for days I can teach about life too.


  1. I love it when a plan comes together. I think mobius strips are very cool too.

    (Nice tat Cuz)

  2. about the tat… I threatened to do it for my 60th birthday, but wussed out, thinking I’d make it to 60 then go into anaphylactic shock from the ink and die in some head shop in the city and leave my wife to explain why her idiot husband of 35 years thought it important to be tattooed. So not tat for me. Maybe at 70.
    Your site is very interesting. I like the writing and the approach. The post about throwing out the lesson plan was right on target.
    So was the one about administrators and the PLC post couldn’t have been more perfect. Are we the only profession that keeps recycling ideas under new names? Probably not, but it makes one wonder if the same thing occurred in the aerospace industry, we would still be landing our astronauts in the ocean.
    I have written a novel about the adventures of a veteran middle school teacher. The first chapter can be found at http://www.tomsboomertimes. I invite you and all your readers to check it out on your prep hour. Take care, and I will make it a point to keep your site on my list.

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