Martin Luther King Jr. Pledging Allegiance at the Lincoln Memorial

MLK Day: It Doesn’t Matter With Me Now

Jose 12 Comments

I’m not going to quit being an educator. Even when people want me to quit, even when the gossip comes raining down, even when the whole world tries to tell me that education is not particularly valuable in the American hierarchy of occupations, I know I cannot quit. I know when people ask me to stop talking about the prejudices …

Jose VilsonMLK Day: It Doesn’t Matter With Me Now
Kings of Leon

Be Somebody

Jose 1 Comment

Everytime I come across December 1st, I think about the millions of people across the world who have constant reminders of their impending doom, and that no matter what they do or how well they keep themselves in shape, their impending mortality becomes not only more certain but with a shorter timeline than average. Oftentimes, they’re stripped from a certain …

Jose VilsonBe Somebody
Yankee Stadium Gang

The Proverbial Godfather to My Students

Jose 4 Comments

This morning, I had a strange choice to make. Ever since the Yankees made the playoffs, I made a quasi-promise to myself that, should the New York Yankees win the championship, I’d take my students to the parade. While not educationally sound, I’ve been building that bridge from Inwood to South Bronx for my students since their 6th grade year. …

Jose VilsonThe Proverbial Godfather to My Students
Soledad O'Brien

Why Your Voice Really Does Matter

Jose 7 Comments

Last night, I and the gentlemen from went to El Museo Del Barrio, a museum dedicated to the Latino experience here and everywhere, located in Spanish Harlem, to see a preview of CNN’s Latino in America, a spinoff off the acclaimed Black in America by Soledad O’Brien. She was present to introduce the clips and answer questions regarding the …

Jose VilsonWhy Your Voice Really Does Matter

Walk With Your Chin Up, Young Man

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Sometime last year, a young weary teacher walked through a still leaf-laden path along the projects in his neighborhood. Exhausted after a long day and a subsequent pair of naps on the trains he needs to take to and from work, sore from his feet up, and generally in need of a welcoming seat and some food, this young man …

Jose VilsonWalk With Your Chin Up, Young Man
Lemon Andersen

The Process, of Teaching and Otherwise

Jose 2 Comments

On Saturday night, yours truly had the opportunity to see County of Kings, a one-man show by Lemon Andersen, in which he tells a semi-autobiographical tale about his life and struggle in the slums of Brooklyn, facing p0verty, drug convictions, AIDS-harboring parents, and the challenges of learning how to be a man without having many father figures around. I describe …

Jose VilsonThe Process, of Teaching and Otherwise

Michael Jordan’s Principle: Address The Haters

Jose 1 Comment

Michael Jordan’s Hall of Fame speech (and his career, for that matter) read like a diatribe against wrong decision-making … and our fundamental ideas about sportsmanship. For those that have lived under the sea for the last 30 years, Michael Jordan’s arguably the greatest basketball player of all time, surpassing records and racking up a highlight reel the size of …

Jose VilsonMichael Jordan’s Principle: Address The Haters
Neil Patrick Harris on Jeopardy

Why We Quote

Jose 2 Comments

On Twitter a few hours ago, I asked a simple question: Here’s a good question: who’s the person you quote the most? Why? I got a myriad of responses, all of which I’d like to share with you: Dr. King. He’s timeless and relatable. – @missprofe Emerson. Radical (for his time), individualist, remained true to self when other belittled or …

Jose VilsonWhy We Quote
Linkin Park

Leave Out All The Rest

Jose 6 Comments

This past week, I had the fortune of, among other things, hanging out in North Carolina with the folks from Center of Teaching Quality. I got there (in one piece) right in time for dinner, where teachers from across the country got together and just hung out. It’d been our second time together, so there was no need for introduction. …

Jose VilsonLeave Out All The Rest
Michael Jackson and Michael Jordan, Moonwalking in "Jam"


Jose 2 Comments

It ain’t too much for me to jam. I have to find my peace ‘cuz No one seems to let me be False prophets cry of doom What are the possibilities I told my brother There’ll be problems, Times and tears for fears, We must live each day Like it’s the last Go with it Go with it Jam! – …

Jose VilsonJam