My Love For School [And My Rancor For The System It’s In]

Jose Vilson Mr. Vilson 1 Comment

I started off the morning with a heavy dose of Stevie Wonder and Aventura, a random sampling of love songs I have on my iPod just to pass the time on the train. The building is super-silent at the time I get in there, perfect for getting my mind and papers ready for the 8am start. About 55 minutes later, the din grows into a chatter, then a squeal and …

Short Notes: Why We Shouldn’t Grade Schools

Jose Vilson Short Notes Leave a Comment

Before I proceed, dozens of people from various school districts have told me that my site is blocked on their school computers. In the event that it is, you can always get my articles via e-mail by signing up on the right-hand side of this blog or by subscribing via RSS for my savvy readers, also on the right-hand side.  They can block my site’s URL, but they can’t block …


A Repertoire for the Imperfect

Jose Vilson Jose 1 Comment

Last night, my fiancee and I watched El Cantante, a first-person retelling of legendary salsa star Hector Lavoe’s life of music, drugs, and suicide through the eyes of his wife Nilda “Puchi” Perez. For anyone who caught the movie and knew anything about the music and times in which the movie takes place, you’d agree with Willie Colon’s assessment that the creators of this movie “missed an opportunity to do …

On Being Difficult

Jose Vilson Jose 2 Comments

A few weeks ago, my good friend John Holland and I were discussing some really good conversation ranging from music to education. Every time we have a conversation, whether it’s by ourselves or in a group context, the back-and-forth reminds me of a never-ending ladder. One time, as we got into this type of discussion, I remember being thoroughly exhausted from work and him being on the opposite side of …

Teaching Patience Where There Is None

Jose Vilson Jose 1 Comment

Today, I felt compelled to break down some skills around adding like terms because kids were still a little confused between 3x and x^3. Many adults profess this, too. Yet, anyone who does understand this tend to roll their eyes at those who don’t. For that matter, anyone who gets anything finds it vital to get annoyed at anyone who doesn’t get that thing they get, even when they’re simultaneously …

(A Part of) My Kids at Yankee Stadium

With Your Hearts Wide Open

Jose Vilson Jose 5 Comments

Last night, and over the last few weekends, I’d been working on a piece (of poetry) for my students, one that I hope they’d remember, that would capture the memories we had for so long. I couldn’t come up with anything appropriate until last night. I couldn’t have it be too sad or too corny, because I do neither of those. In my graduation t-shirt and jeans today, I tried …

Oasis in Concert

Paint No Illusion, Try To Click With Whatcha Got

Jose Vilson Jose 4 Comments

First, if I haven’t thanked each and every one of you for your feedback to the blog, let me thank you once more. It’s been a tough couple of weeks personally, and even when the New Yorker in me tells me otherwise, I appreciate the random kindness and words of encouragement from semi-complete strangers. As the school year winds down, the staff can see the shore, but hasn’t fully avoided …

Precocious Kid's X-Mas List

Your Favorite EduBlogger’s Favorite Edublog?

Jose Vilson Jose 9 Comments

Another day, another list of edubloggers I may or may not have made it on. This conversation trickled down via Teacher Magazine, then the Teacher Leaders Network, and it has some people up in arms about why some of the same bloggers get chosen for these and they exclude others. Even my friend John Holland, whose Pre-K Now made it on the list, didn’t have nice things to say about …

Captain Underpants

Your Image Is As Important As Your Underwear

Jose Vilson Jose 3 Comments

Today, I had the pleasure of attending the 1st prep meeting for a conference I’ll be attending this summer in Orlando, where we’ll be bathing in the sun next to a bevy of beauties and margaritas learning about teaching and learning from the likes of Jon Saphier and Robert Marzano. After attending last year, I’m ecstatic that they accepted my application to attend once more. After the long meeting, I …

Malcolm X, "Our Freedom Can't Wait!"

Short Notes: Build Your Own Independence v.2010

Jose Vilson Short Notes 1 Comment

A suggestion on building your own independence in the new decade, but first, a few notes: If you didn’t catch my interview in American Latino TV, check it out. Discussions about Latinos and education ensue. [American Latino] Jeff Pearlman threw me this interview with Roger Ebert, who’s found new life as a voice of his generation and the ones after. [Esquire] The school that graduated future Hall of Famer Kobe …