A meme is a terrible thing to waste

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If you don’t already know, a meme is an idea or action that spreads — usually through social sharing. It sometimes looks like a chain letter, except for the fact that you’ll actually enjoy participating in memes. This meme is good for promoting blogs and helping readers better know the passionate authors whose names, in most cases, don’t appear in bookstores or libraries.

I was invited to participate in this one, known as the Sunshine Award Meme, by my friend Al Gonzalez, who blogs here and tweets here. Check out Al’s work, as he is a fine, progressive-minded educator.

Sunshine Awards guidelines

  1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger. See above.
  2. Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
  4. List 11 bloggers you’d like to nominate (keep it going).
  5. Post 11 questions for those bloggers, and alert them that you have nominated them. Please don’t nominate a blogger who has nominated you.

11 Random Facts about me:

  1. I have two amazing kids, whom I occasionally write about on this blog.
  2. I have played in the same fantasy football league for 24 years (I’ve made the playoffs 20 times).
  3. I was once a card-carrying Republican. Now, I’m about as liberal as they come.
  4. I’ve seen every episode of every Star Trek series.
  5. I love to end each day with my wife in our rec room, with a glass of chardonnay, debriefing and unwinding with some mindless TV.
  6. I think Buffer is the coolest new social media tool.
  7. I’ve written five books (you can find four of them here).
  8. I don’t like pets, but I love my dog Max (picture inset).
  9. I don’t believe the Cleveland Browns will win a Super Bowl in my lifetime.
  10. I love coffee, but it has to be from Starbucks.
  11. Performing on The Voice is on my Bucket List.

My answers to Al’s 11 questions:

  1. Where are you from originally? Cleveland, Ohio. Been here my whole life.
  2. If you were stuck on a deserted island and a plane dropped a box of food, what would you want it to be? A perishable item would be steak. Nonperishable would be cereal bars.
  3. What’s your favorite animal? I’ve always thought elephants are ridiculously cool; plus, they never forget who I am.
  4. What is your favorite part about being a teacher/administrator/education professional? The never-ending hope that I’ll change the world.
  5. What is the most pressing issue facing education right now? Poor reading, due mainly to outdated strategies and a frightening lack of access to books.
  6. What do you do for fun that is not related to education? Family stuff, fantasy football, golf, read for pleasure.
  7. What book(s) would you recommend? Nonfiction: Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. Fiction: The Giver by Lois Lowry.
  8. What is the airspeed of an unladen swallow? In MPH or Knots?
  9. Do you like this sunshine meme thing? Sure, it’s fun and forces me to reflect on my life.
  10. Do you like to sing? Uh, hello, see #11 in Random Facts about Me above.
  11. Is there a question I should have asked that I didn’t? No. I like these.

My nominations

  1. Jen Robinson on Jen Robinson’s Book Page
  2. Scott McLeod on Dangerously Irrelevant
  3. Wes Fryer on Moving at the Speed of Creativity
  4. Justin Vail on Education Shift
  5. Jessica Lahey on Coming of Age in the Middle
  6. Scott Merrick on scottmerrickdotnet
  7. Maureen Devlin on Teach Children Well
  8. Kelly Tenkely on iLearn Technology
  9. Bill Ferriter on The Tempered Radical (arguably the coolest blog title ever)
  10. David Wees on The Reflective Educator
  11. Jacqui Murray on word dreams

My 11 questions

  1. When you were a kid, what did you dream of being?
  2. How do you take your coffee?
  3. What is one thing you’ve done that you’re really proud of?
  4. I’m a student teacher, what’s your best advice to help me succeed?
  5. You can use a magic wand one time. What will you fix in education?
  6. Android or iOS?
  7. What is your go-to social network?
  8. The person who interests you most has the seat next to you on a plane. Who is it?
  9. What is the one blog or website you absolutely must read daily?
  10. Where do you go when you have to escape reality?
  11. What’s at the top of your Bucket List?
Enjoy the meme, and don’t forget to share.
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Mark Barnes is the Founder of Times 10 Publications, which produces the popular Hack Learning Series, The uNseries, and other books from some of education's most reputable teachers and leaders. Barnes presents internationally on assessment, connected education, and Hack Learning. Connect with @markbarnes19 on Twitter.

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