eva haldane Archives - The Jose Vilson

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12 Blogs I Loved In 2012

by Jose Vilson on December 30, 2012

in Short Notes


In my short notes series, I like to share things I’ve read from around the web, usually parsed out from the plethora of things I pick up on my social media networks. At times, I find gems that keep me coming back for more. The following list have been reliable sources for pieces to share all year. I’ve had some of these in my Google reader since I started blogging, and some of these are relatively new to me. Either way, check them out and tell them I sent you:

In no particular order:


Maria Popova’s blog continues to be a source of inspiration for my writing. The curation of pieces is top notch.

NYC Educator

Not that people don’t already laud him for his blog, but recently, it feels like everyone’s talking about his blog. Y’all late, though. He’s always had good material.


If I ever wanted to know the real deal with Chicago Public Schools, especially around the Chicago strike, I go to Fred Klonsky’s blog.


Renee Moore pushes people to see past the left-right debate and look at what’s wrong with our education system. She’s like my blogging big sister.

Bastard Swordsman

Dart Adams’ blog reminds me of those conversations my boys used to have while listening to Gangstarr and A Tribe Called Quest. Worth every read.

Practical Theory

An administrator blog shows up on my list. Chris Lehmann’s blog has the soul of a man. His triumphs and tribulations pushed his writing into another stratosphere in 2012.

GOOD Education

At some point this year, GOOD decided to go in a whole different direction with their blog, controversially firing some of their most popular writers and inciting a few flames thrown through various blogs that I respect. Yet, Liz Dwyer’s writing seemed (pardon the pun) unchained in the aftermath. Before she got busy inviting some of us to write, her own postings sung to my pro-public leanings. She was worth every read this year.

Daniel Willingham

Dr. Willingham has always found a way to engage me in the research, most famously through his video on multiple intelligences. Nowadays, he runs a blog that has found its way into many an educator’s blog reader.

Hack Education

Audrey Watters loves kicking education technology in the pants. Necessary in a world where the ed-techers would rather raise their numbers than build solutions for education.

Education Rethink

Recently, John T. Spencer got an award for “Annoying Person who actually makes you question your teaching in a positive way Award.” I snickered. If anything, his blog demands you rethink your argument. Time and again.

Eva Haldane

This year, I saw too many of my closest colleagues drop their blogs for different reasons. Some did it for professional reasons, other personal. Few of us stuck around to keep sharing our thoughts. Eva was one of them. Her journey through the last year of her dissertation while fighting her own battles have shaken me to do better day after day.

The Smithian / Danamo

Writer / editor Danyel Smith’s Tumblr curates at a breakneck speed, her interests consolidated and parsed so finely, you wonder how she puts it all together.

These twelve always find their way into my consciousness and here’s hoping they find their way into yours. Thank you to these twelve plus the plethora of others I comment on regularly. You’ve made 2012 awesome. Do you have any favorites?

Jose, who wants to promote more quality Latino/a education-related blogs …


Five People I Wish Would Write A Damn Book Already

by Jose Vilson on August 19, 2011

in Jose

Before I begin, I’d like to dedicate this space to one of my first students ever, Bianca Espinal. She’s part of a program called “Broadway’s Next Star” and I would love it if you visited the site, watch her perform “Rolling In The Deep,” and hit “Like!” Because I’m positive you’ll love that voice of hers.

In the middle of wrapping up my manuscript, I got to thinking about all the friends I’ve made over the last few years while working on this piece and said, “Who would I love to read a book from?” Some were natural choices and others surprised me when I threw their names in my imaginary bin. All in all, I not only came up with five, but I also thought about what type of stories I’d love to hear from them.

Now, without further adieu, here are my five:

Amber Cabral

Those of you know have followed my blogging since the early days know how much I value her writing expertise and point of views on writing. She has a way of emoting that’s akin to soaking a towel into a heart’s worth of blood and wringing the towel into a cup for a vampire’s thirst. She can do the wordplay, sure, but her best writing comes when it feels like she’s in the very moment that inspired her to write. Thus, when you’re reading, it feels like she’s acting out things so you can move your body and emotions with her. I’d love to read a book about love from her. I favor the memoir in her case, but self-help / advice is cool, too. She can do that rather well.

Eva Haldane

I’ve probably been waiting for this for some time, but Eva’s writing has just the right quirks and just the right simplicity that gets her message across to people who can’t always relate. I remember one of her essays for her application to Columbia University made me tear up as she spoke about her family and personal goals. Those types of essays aren’t supposed to do that to me, and they do. I can’t wait to see what these few years in city have meant to her as she writes about them. Hoping she does.

John Norton

Yes, the guy who’s helped edit teachers across the nation should have his own book. I envision an anthology with his own comments attached to them. He’s been instrumental in my own growth as a writer, and so many others can attest to that. Now, it’s his turn. I’ll keep begging him sometime after I’m done with everything else I have to do.


Rich Villar

For those in the poetry scene, Rich Villar’s intellect with regards to poetry is only matched by his levity and acute critique of the poetry scene as a whole. I’d love for him to take that persona and put that in a 150-page piece. Some of my favorite pieces from him have either made me fall on the floor laughing or made me deeply reflective about the hardships with death in his family. I know I’m not the only one who wants to see that, either.

Jessica Filion (no blog)

Everyone wants a poetry book out of her. I’ve watched the writing go from having a couple of layers in depth to having six layers in depth, and that says volumes in a scene that usually has the depth of a kiddie pool. Her voice in the poems she writes stands out in ways few can. Yes, people might want her to write more, but more important, people want it in a way that they can take it home with them instead of just hearing the reading.

Those are my five. Bonus, you say?

Renee Moore, but I’ve already waxed poetic about her. Her teaching is nationally recognized, and so is her voice. Promising educators, of color or otherwise, you must follow her.

Who would you put on your personal list?