Not Too Far To Go

Jose Vilson Short Notes

Before I even continue, I’d like to show my support for Talib’s upcoming effort, Eardrum. I recently wrote about Talib’s artistry in this blog as well as fellow rapper Common’s ascendancy on BlogCritics. I swear he’s come out with 3-4 videos for this album, but I honestly believe his latest video for “Hot Thing” is the hottest. See for yourself. Again, Talib Kweli in stores this Tuesday, August 21st.

In other news, one of my friends told me gave me the state of Black, Latino, and Asian organizations on campus (Look in the sidebar if you don’t know where I mean). Needless to say, I was sorely disappointed. One of the points I addressed thoroughly was the unification of “B-L-A” organizations, especially the main ones. Unfortunately, I could never fully address those because of the separatist ideas of a few individuals. It’s one thing to have pride in one’s culture and traditions, and quite another to exclude groups similar to yours so you can get some sort of props.Secondly, I took issue with a mention that the same separatist said, verbatim, “I don’t think you [my friend] are Black enough to be commenting on these issues.”


Yes, my friend has “lighter” skin, yes my friend’s Dominican, and yes my he almost looks Middle Eastern, but the dude’s done a lot of work as part of the African diaspora, and stood up for B-L-A’s even when he was the sole person in there that could. Things like that annoy me, earnestly.

The list of books about teaching I’ve compiled is sick. It includes, but is not limited to:

What Your Sixth Grader Needs To Know by E.D. Hirsch, Jr.
Great Estimations by Bruce Goldstone
If You Made a Million and How Much Is a Million by David M. Schwartz
The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint-Exupéry
Math for All Seasons by Greg Tang
Actual Size by Steve Jenkins

A few weeks ago, I accepted that I’d be teaching 6th graders rather than the 7th and 8th graders I had over my teaching career. I’m thinking about doing read-alouds every so often, something I didn’t do in the 7th and 8th grade because I was preparing them for a high school mentality. 6th graders are still little kids, and they’re going through the last vestiges of childhood. A couple of these books actually make me wonder if they’re really on grade level, but at the same time, but it’s fine because we’ll be doing a lot of estimation and number sense.

I’m excited about the extremely positive feedback I got about my website. It’s nice to know all that work paid off. I wouldn’t do it if it was in the middle of school. Anyways, mi gente, I’m done.

jose, who laughs at kids trying to bring back the rap 80’s