Episode 35: The Teacher Side Hustle

Episode 35: The Teacher Side Hustle

If I keep calling the episodes special, does that make them less special? This, however, really is a special episode. We interview Diana Lamenzo, creator and Director of ‘Tutoring You to Excellence’, LLC. We discuss how she found a gap in the services available to parents looking for tutoring for their children and capitalized on it.

For more information on Tutoring You to Excellence, check out their website:


Episode 34: Teachers On The Picket Line Again

Look at us! We are broadcasting (almost) on schedule. In the first of today’s two segments, Linda takes a look at the Teacher’s Strike in Los Angeles, and Shannon interupts her a lot. Then, In honor of his birthday, Shannon discusses the work of Dr. Martin Luther King in his latter years (and Linda does not interrupt her).

We end with some reading and listening recommendations.

Be sure to listen to our next episode, titled:  The Teacher Side Hustle

Episode 33: Teacher Self Care: from Concept to Conference

Episode 33: Teacher Self Care: From Concept to Conference

We’re back!! Sorry for the delay: we have a special episode for you. Teaching has always been stressful, but with the pressure of testing, intensified teacher evaluation, growing fear of violence, Spartan budget and many more, teachers are ‘burning out’ in record numbers.

Teacher self care is becoming more important and finally receiving the attention it deserves. In this episode, we interview Fran Warren, the founder of www.theeducatorsroom.com and the moving force behind the Teacher Self Care Conference.

Episode 32: Back to School

Episode 32: Back to School

We’re Back! Betsy Back to School Bonanza

Soooo, this is the second time we recorded this episode. We get a little bit punchy, but we also deliver some solid content. We give you all the DeVos news you can stomach: stories of yachts and armed teachers. Then we discuss some of the more offensive school policies targeting black hair. Finally, we bring it home with some pole dancing . . . you’ll have to listen to find out what that’s all about.


Episode 30: Solidarity Forever

Episode 30: Solidarity Forever

In this episode, Shannon and Linda discuss the current trend of teacher strikes and compare it to the strikes that took place in Connecticut in the 1970’s (before Shannon was born.) This includes taking a look a case being considered by the US Supreme Court (Abdul v. Detroit) which threatens the livelihood of teachers unions.


Episode 29: Stand with the Dreamers

This is an action packed episode with a discussion of the Dreamers and DACA, followed by an interview with one of Shannon’s colleagues, Chelsea Connery, who served as a teacher of English Language Learners and has a deep personal and professional commitment to the plight of the Dreamers.

Betsy Bell Biv Devos is at it again and Linda and Shannon are there to mock her. Although, her interview on 60 Minutes mocks itself. The podcast ends with a discussion of the national student walkout on March 14.

Episode 27: Intersectionality in Education

Episode 27: Intersectionality - what it is and why we care.  We bring you an interview with Dr. Jennie Weiner, of UCONN, whose latest study looks at the framework of intersectionality as it relates women of color as building leaders.

We wrap it up with a preview discussion about The Black Panther. Shannon and Linda talk about what this movie, starring a black superhero, means in the larger American context.

Episode 26: Welcome to 2018

Episode 26 . . . it’s a quick one. Linda and Shannon hit some current events. It seems our president is out there setting a bad example again. Linda shares some pondering on youtube memes in the pop culture corner and Shannon talks music.

25th Episode: Do you have a Harvey Weinstein in your class?

It’s our silver anniversary! This is episode 25 and is titled “Do you have a Harvey Weinstein in your class?” We are looking at the issue of sexual harassment in schools; specifically, what happens when a student harasses the teacher.

Here are the links to some of the resources discussed in the episode:




Episode 24- The Other Side of the Looking Glass

This episode is called ‘The Other Side of the Looking Glass’, but could just as easily be called, ‘A potpourri of topics’.  We begin with the a few tidbits from the state of education, both national and specific to Connecticut. Then Linda talks about her new job, teaching in an affluent district. (How do YOU pronounce affluent? Emphasis on the first or second syllable?) Finally, Shannon shared some of her recent experiences as a presenter and an attendee at the UCEA-University Council for Education Administration Conference in Denver.

We also plug for The Educator’s Room (theeducatorsroom.com). Linda appears as a guest on episode 57 of their podcast.


Episode 23: Your Special Education Rights

Wow! Linda and Shannon are particularly proud of this episode.  We took our show on the road to interview Jennifer Laviano and Julie Swanson, Child Advocate (that is, a person who advocates for children, not a child who is an advocate). They have recently published the book Your Special Education RIghts - What your School District isn't Telling You.”

Too much good stuff in this interview to list! I will tell you . . . there were tears.

Listen, review, repeat.

Jennifer and Julie’s website (which is chock full of videos and information about special education rights):  http://yourspecialeducationrights.com/

We recommend this book for teachers and parents alike . . . so much good information.

Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Your-Special-Education-Rights-District/dp/1510719393/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1508940932&sr=8-1&keywords=your+special+education+rights)

Barnes & Noble


For the Nook



Episode 22: The Special Education Landscape

This episode (our 22nd) focuses on the topic of special education with a side of conversation about Columbus Day.

Shannon interviews Sarah, a veteran special education teacher and we discuss how special education has perpetuated the lack of equity of education in underserved populations.

This show serves as prelude for episode 23, in which we interview authors, Jennifer Laviano and Julie Swanson who just published a book entitled, “Your Special Education Rights - What your School District isn’t Telling You”. 

Episode 21: Where have we been...CT Budget and National Anthem

We’re back!! We apologize for our unintended hiatus. However, schools back in session, we have more regular schedules and we are going to make it up to you with some great topics and great discussions.  This week, we start off with a summary of what is happening in Connecticut with our budget and what the implications are for education in the state.

The second half of the episode revolves around the ‘take a knee’ controversy obsessing the country right now. As always, we take a look at it through an education lens and ask our listeners, what is the policy in your school regarding the anthem and the pledge?

Please remember that we would appreciate any ratings or feedback you have for us and find us on twitter, facebook and our website.

Episode 20: Back to School Bundle

Wow, has it really been 20 episodes? We are proud of our little podcast and we thank all of our subscribers. Please consider rating the podcast and/or give a review. We would really appreciate it.


This episode provides a ‘Back to School Bundle’. It starts off with some thoughts and advice for the beginning of a new school year from veteran teachers.  If you have a tip you would like to share please email us, tweet at us, or post on facebook. Next we talk about how to address the Charlottesville protest with your students. Finally, Linda has been accumulating some culture questions for Shannon . . . she went 1.5 for 3.




Episode 19- August News Cycle

On  the 19th  episode of the educulture podcast- Shannon and Linda  discuss the August news cycle.  We bring back our Bel Biv Devos segment where we provide updates on the current administration's quest to not prevent discrimination of LGBTQ students as well as a brief discussion about affirmative action. They end with the Culture Question segment where Linda asks Shannon about current pop culture.  

Episode 18: Summer Academy D.I.Y.P.L.

Introducing (drum roll, please) our DIY-Summer Academy for Professional Learning.  In this episode Shannon and Linda provide a list of suggested readings, viewings and listenings for educators this summer; specifically related to education and culture.

Also, I quick hit from the Belle Biv Devos files.

Summer Suggestions:





  • Binge-worthy TV series:

    • Last week Tonight

      • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Last_Week_Tonight_with_John_Oliver_episodes

    • Season 4 of the Wire

      • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wire_(season_4)

  • While you’re in the car:

      • Another Round Podcast:

        • http://www.wnyc.org/shows/another-round

      • See Something-Say Something Podcast

        • https://www.buzzfeed.com/seesomethingsaysomething

    • Shannon- Sza- ctrl

      • https://szactrl.com/music

Next Up: Summer episodes will be dedicated to interviews with educators with particular areas of expertise.

Episode 17: Stereotypes Oh My!

This episode is called “Stereotypes: oh, my!”


This is our second episode in which we respond to listener questions. Out of the dozens of questions we received, three in particular rose to the top of the pile:


  1. When is it ok to believe a stereotype about my urban kids?

  2. Why do people perceive Asians as being smart?  Am I racist if I think all Asians are typically smart?

  3. Should I use pop culture in a classroom?  How can I use it in the right way?

Books and resources mentioned in this episode:

The Asian American Achievement Paradox by Jennifer Lee and Min Zhou https://www.russellsage.org/asian-american-achievement-paradox

 Ted Talk: The Danger of a SIngle Story, Chimamanda Adiche


Episode 16: Stop the world I want to get off

This week Shannon and Linda give a recap of current news in education.  The Bel Biv Devos segment is back and we discuss the new education budget being proposed.  Then we discuss the Bethune Cookman graduation and a charter school that has banned hair extensions. We end with a great resistance story out of NYC. 

Episode 15: Microaggressions- Death by a Thousand Cuts

This Episode is titled   Microaggressions- Death by a Thousand Cuts- shout out to Kevin Nadal at city university of NYC for the title.  We discuss microaggressions and how to avoid them.  Then we talk about what you can do in your schools about microaggressions.  Then Linda quizzes Shannon in our pop culture segment.