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Strange New Classrooms

10 days off!!!

DAMN this is needed

10 minutes until my last class is over

30 minutes for lunch

meeting with the principal about more parent concerns.

The ALICE training.

Then break.

Year 2 sucks. I get that the concerns are valid (timely feedback is the big one.) It’s nothing major, just a learning experience for me. But it just stinks that I am trying hard, and these students are not prepared for high school so my imperfect attempts to get them there are causing me trouble.

So in AP Euro, I’m just on the era of European unity

Soooo today, since it’s a half day and the last day before break…I’m teaching them about Eurovision.

And we’re watching music videos. 

$20 of gas in my car and I’m on my way home

Everyone cross your fingers that my wallet is where I think it is.

Problem solving

I found some spare change and bought myself some potato chips. Not ideal, but doable. I asked one of my classmates to grab a free piece of fruit from the dining hall for me since he’s a student.

I have my checkbook and I found a student ID from two years ago so that can work as a photo ID. I can also see if my friend has any cash on him and write him a check for that then pay for gas with cash. All I need is $10 or so to get me home. (Then begins the search for my wallet.)

And I just realized I may not have enough gas to get me home

And my AAA card is in my wallet.

I have a checkbook, but generally speaking places don’t take checks without an ID. Which is in my wallet.


Got all the way to class, realized I had left my wallet at home

Oh well, I guess I didn’t need dinner before a workout and not eating since 11. I can go until 10 before I eat.


A Bullseye In the Sky Over Texas

When we see patterns in the atmosphere from space, they tend to be in the clouds of powerful storms. These all have roughly the same form: they look like a spiral galaxy with arms spinning out from the core. 

But meteorologists have detected other organizational principles at work. Like, take the fascinating image above. It shows …. well, I wasn’t sure exactly what it showed. A meteorologist’s blog post described them as “convectively-generated mesospheric airglow waves,” but that did not quite explain how they worked or what they were.

So I got in touch with Steven Miller, senior research scientist and deputy director of the Cooperative Institute for Research in the Atmosphere (CIRA) at Colorado State University. Miller and his colleagues discovered these concentric rings while working with the newish satellite Suomi satellite’s next-generation low-light sensor. (They published a paper on the discovery in PNAS.)

Miller told me I was looking at glowing ripples in the atmosphere itself!

These are literally ‘ripples of glowing atmosphere’ whose structure is the result of a train of gravity waves that is passing through a thin layer of the atmosphere that produces a very faint veil of light called ‘nightglow,’” he said. “These are not clouds (although they were forced by the thunderstorms below), and they do not occur in the troposphere, where our ‘weather’ is. They are much higher up—at the interface between the mesosphere and the thermosphere—about 90 km [55 miles] above the surface! The glow is revealing important dynamics of our atmosphere that would otherwise be completely invisible to us.”

Read more. [Image: Suomi]

All hail the glow cloud