The Tired Teacher

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn


I bumped into my friend Lynn the other night as I was out on a walk.

“Are you just coming home now?” I asked. Lynn leaves early for work; I often see her heading off when I take out Miller around 6:30.

“Yes!” she said, obviously tired. “I don’t like to complain, but this is a busy time of the year.”

Lynn is a teacher, and as anyone who has kids in school or is in the education system themselves can attest, this is a busy and yet listless time of year. Teachers are tired; kids are tired. June can seem awfully long. Read more

Lifelong Learning

Although I’m not a teacher, I follow some education blogs. I’m interested in how curriculum influences thinking on what’s important (or not) in society. In addition to the what of curriculum, I’m also interested in the how of teaching: what are educators doing to engage their students? What are they doing to inspire kids to become lifelong learners?

When I say a lifelong learner, I don’t mean someone goes to school forever, although I suppose it could include that if you had the money and life circumstances. I’m thinking more of the “I can do this” mindset. When I took training in adult education, an instructor of one of the courses said that working with adult learners requires a sensitivity to the fact that no adult likes to look stupid. Walking into an education event isn’t always easy; adults are supposed to be capable and know all. The idea of school in any form is daunting for some. Read more

Library Love and Power

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.

I went to one of the older branches of the city library last night to return a book, and stopped as soon as I walked in so I could breathe in deeply. What is that library smell that’s so amazing? The place was quietly bubbling with people at tables shifting to reach this book or that, someone speaking with a staff member at the checkout desk, and a few others stretching to reach up or down along the corridors of shelves.

I’ve always loved libraries and spent a lot of time in our local branch as a kid. Friday nights my mom grocery shopped and I went to check out a stack of books. Librarians were all knowing and usually friendly, except for those who shushed at any sound above a scuff of a toe. Some librarians even frowned at that. Silence was golden in those days. Read more

Beyond Words: Imagery’s Power in Health Education

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.

Last week I read about a Toronto artist using comics to teach about birth control, which is pretty great. Rebecca Roher teamed up with gynecologist Dr. Aparna Sridhar to create resources that are medically accurate, something Dr. Sridhar says she sees as a needed alternate to Dr. Google and the anecdotal information often found in online forums. However convincing someone might be in a forum, they aren’t a doctor examining you and your medical history. Read more

The Acronym For The Win

Last night I was talking to one of my teens and her cousin about text acronyms. “I just learned what FTW means,” I said quietly so their grandparents wouldn’t overhear us. The grandparents were talking to the grandsons about something else.

“What did you think it means?” my daughter asked. Until a couple of days ago, I understood it was the less polite of two popular options and I mouthed it carefully. They thought this was hilarious. Read more

Science or Scones, Communications Must Be Clear

Blog topics go beyond 9-5. For work related posts only, click the work tag or say hi on LinkedIn.linked_mantasmagorical_morguefile

I tweeted this piece from Marshall Shepherd yesterday: 9 Tips for Communicating Science to People Who Are Not Scientists. I shared it because Shepherd covers some fundamentals for good communications, no matter what the topic. Read more

MadJan Works: Let’s Go

compressedededit_profilepic_nov2016MadJan Works: Curious, pulled, motivated.

Many years of writing have taught me that effective communication connects people and ineffective communications divide people. That divide can cost someone decision-making power in important and meaningful ways: health, safety, education, and more.

I’ve started the MadJan Works to highlight good communications strategies and products in both for-profit and nonprofit worlds. I want to make the world more positively connected in ways everyone can understand.

And then there are dogs. I write about communications with them too. They may not have words, but they tell us a lot.

I have over 20 years experience in communications and I thrive on word work. On the Causes page I showcase groups I admire that are making positive change one person at a time.

This blog goes beyond 9-5 communications. If you want work related posts only, click the work tag or say hello on LinkedIn.


Janet Madsen