Jan Iwase

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What Should Schools Be Teaching in These Turbulent Times?

As a retired school principal, I don’t have the worries right now that many school leaders are facing. Yet, I am very concerned as I read comments on social media as well as articles about schools opening for the next school year. Teachers and parents want to know what the plan is, and so far,…

Conditions for Growth – A Metaphor

I posted this photo on Facebook with this caption: Last year we didn’t have as many white gingers blooming so Randy and I worked to get them growing again. I cleared off the old stalks that had died and Randy fertilized and watered more often. This year, the gingers are taller and stronger. The blossoms…

Just What I Needed ❤️

It’s been a few weeks since I wrote my last blog post. It’s not because I didn’t try; I’ve started and restarted one, but I just can’t seem to get it done. When I started blogging, I made it my goal to be positive even when the situation wasn’t what I hoped especially when writing…

Racism – We Must Do More in Schools

In the midst of a pandemic, we suddenly are thrust into another crisis that has brought anger and strife into an already-hurting world. The killing of a black man by a white police officer in Minneapolis has forced us to closely examine our personal feelings. Do we feel anger or sadness or pity? Do we…

“A Nation in Turmoil”

This was the headline in this morning’s Honolulu Star-Advertiser. I am so saddened by the state of our country. I rarely use this blog to share my political views, but this is not a political situation. It is a case of failed leadership.  It’s been a week since the tragic death of George Floyd. People…

Okage Sama De – I Am What I Am Because of You

Recently, I learned that my parents seriously considered moving to California when my older sister and I were toddlers. Apparently, landowners were offering interested parties a plot of land to farm. My Dad was interested; he loved growing vegetables and fruits, and his ambition had been to become an agriculture teacher. As the oldest of…

I Miss Our Grandsons (and Our Son, too)

When we were told to stay at home during this pandemic, I knew my husband and I would be fine. After all, we are retired so it was a matter of adjusting to the new normal. Two months later, we actually are doing well, walking daily, eating more home-cooked meals, and planning our weekly “events”…

Playing with Math – Part II

Okay, so I’m almost done reading Math Recess by Sunil Singh and Dr. Christopher Brownell. Sunil is one of my recent friends on Twitter, and I’m intrigued by some of his posts. I also read this blog with a slightly different viewpoint about mathematics education. I see both viewpoints, and I remember sharing my doubts with Sunil…

Cooking While Hunkering Down at Home

During this pandemic while we are staying at home, I have noticed more sharing of jokes, memes, and funny stories in my emails and posts on social media. I think it’s great that we can have a good laugh even while cooped up at home for who-knows-how-long. I’ve also noticed that more of my Facebook…

Will We Have the Courage to Change?

I’ve been thinking about what life will be like post-COVID-19. This has been a challenging time for all of us, and because we are social creatures of habit, making drastic changes in how we live day-to-day during this lockdown has been difficult. For myself, part of the older generation that is most impacted by this…