Friday, December 18, 2009

Science Division's Globe is World-Famous

Massive congratulations to our Science Division for landing on columnist Dave Barry's 2009 Holiday Gift Guide.

They also got featured in today's Detroit News. (Ahem, hello! Someone deserves a byline for that great photograph. It was difficult to get all of them to smile at the same time.)

Of course, the general demand for a Sperm Globe is fairly predicatable, so the influx of surprise orders caught with our pants down. Sadly, the globes are out of stock.

Without getting too detailed about the manufacturing process, we can say is that a new batch of globes will be ready to ship out in February.

Congrats to Nick, Gayann, and Sam--our Sceince Division. What will they think of next?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Name That Band Classroom Activity

With the snow beginning to fly, the complaints that the office is too cold, and the end of college semester papers due for some of us here at Teacher's Brunch HQ in frigid Auburn Hills, MI, we thought we'd offer up a fun yet slyly smart classroom activity.

The premise is simple. Your kids love music. Take advantage of that by inventing their very own musical act.

To do that, they must develop:

The band's name
The band's genre
The title of the album
Ten song titles that wouldn't bother Wal-Mart
The liner notes
The album art

On the surface, this sort of seems like a cutesy art project, but you can encourage consideration of the following:

How album art is a form of persuasion
Expectations associated with genre
Artistic freedom versus the chance for commercial success
The role of media in popular art

By way of some example, this link lists, according to the writers, the best band names out there. Some of them aren't exactly school-friendly, but you could leave them off.

One of our favorite bands around here (at least among the enlightened few) is the new musical collective Works Progress Administration.

In keeping with their name, their album art mimics WPA-era art. See for yourself:

If you run this activity, let us know how it goes.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Happy Birthday to Our Blog

Today marks the one year anniversary of the Teacher's Brunch blog.

A year ago we started writing as a way of transitioning from having a website with a shopping cart to an entity more fully encompassed by our parent company, Teacher's Discovery.

Today, we are even more closely tied with TD, so much so that the Teacher's Brunch logo will be fading from new products. In effect, Teacher's Brunch was a petulant child gone away for college, only to discover that hometown life is where it's at.

As we've evolved, we moved from making only technology products to making anything--posters, books, odds and ends, and more technology products.

In the next year, we'll be debuting an expanded line of T.V. Game Show electronic games, online versions of classic texts, and [ + + redacted + + ]. So as you can imagine, we're pretty excited.

Our blog has developed into more than a product pimping extension of our catalog (though it still is that). We now see it as an outreach program. A way to try to stimulate discussion or debate, even if it's just in the minds of our readers. We hope you appreciate what we write.

Thanks for being with us. We hope you'll stay for another year.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Buy an old typewriter for a big pile of money

Regular readers of our blog remember us mentioning Cormac McCarthy here (saw "The Road." Was underwhelmed, though it's a perfectly ok film.).

Well, we just saw, via one of our fave blogs Pop Candy, that the typewriter used to write the book is going on the auction block.

If you've got a cool fifteen or twenty grand laying about, you can own the typewriter McCarthy bought in a pawn shop.

Take a look here, and save your pennies up!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

But a kid is supposed to be a kid!

Everyone here at Teacher's Brunch HQ in still-mild! Auburn Hills, MI hopes you've recovered from gorging on turkey and stuffing. Christmas music is in the air (some radio stations started just after Halloween, but we refused to listen) and the tree is lit in the lunchroom.

To get you in the holiday spirit, we offer this link, , detailing an altercation at a local kid-centric pizzeria. Sometimes, you have to just shake your head.

It reminded someone around here of a past trip to a similar restaurant/arcade. A young male employee, about 6'1" and maybe 110 lbs, was making his way to the Sky Tubes with a wet dry vacuum. Seems one of the young patrons had, shall we say, lost his pizza. When asked how much he was getting paid to scale the Sky Tubes to suck up the offending puddle, the employee replied with defeat, "Minimum wage."

He was quickly reminded that's why he needs to study and get to college.