My Top 10 Books for Christmas

I'd like to share with you my favorite books (since we're approaching Amazon's “drop dead” date for ordering for Christmas.) Widgets

During Christmas, I'll also share how I made this widget and ideas for bloggers to utilize them on their blog. A long time critic of google adsense, programs like Amazon Associates can allow a blogger to ethically “monetize” their blog while retaining their own independence and credibility.

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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Brian Sullivan December 16, 2007 - 12:44 am

I like the Amazon Associates program but I don’t understand how it is a more ethical way of monetizing one’s blog or website. Are you saying that folks using AdSense are not credible? If so, why? I think educators who give back to the community via resources, information, and tools they make available online should be able to receive financial compensation for their time and talent. If AdSense provides a way to receive reasonable compensation, why should one be made to feel guilty about it? An educator’s wage, as you know, barely meets the needs of the average family. If one can provide a service for other educators free of charge and AdSense can cover the grocery bill, why shouldn’t it be utilized?
Thank you for a terrific blog.

Vicki A. Davis December 17, 2007 - 2:44 pm


Google adsense looks at your content and puts related ads on there. It sounds like a good idea, but in practice, I’ve seen some disastrous problems on educational blogs.

For example, a teacher writes how to do an effective term paper, and google adsense puts ads on their site selling “free” term papers.

A teacher talks about social networks and social issues and then ads for sexy teens pop up.

MOst recently, on our Ning for Flat Classroom, ads for sexy women in Qatar almost shut down the Qatar side of the project.

I think that IF an education chooses to monetize a blog that they write ON THEIR OWN TIME (not school time), then they should specifically select the products and services that they recommend. Otherwise, could you prescreen everything on your website.

Trust me, I’d love nothing better than to put google adsense on my blog and the money that my traffic volumes could generate, however, my reputation must be more important than my pocketbook. I talk about some pretty tough issues here and would hate for ads advocating against the message I am supporting to come up on my site. I think it would hurt my own message.

So, for me, I have real questions about Google Adsensing a blog and although I do use the Google search feature on the right of my blog which I believe is a good way to Google Adsense my blog, I do not advocate the google adsense ads for the reasons I’ve stated.

I’ve hashed through this issue and looked at both sides for the two years I’ve been blogging and feel pretty strongly about this.

Mike December 17, 2007 - 5:41 pm

I’ll put in a vote for the Marzano book, too.

And if it helps any, my experience with AdSense is that it really doesn’t pay out nearly as well as you might think, so imo you’re not missing much.


Josh December 19, 2007 - 4:48 am

I agree with the concerns about AdSense. There are just too many potential issues with the ad inventory that may show up. I also run a blog on Blogger and that’s why I choose to not run ads. The small amount of money that may come from it isn’t worth the potential damage to my reputation or the headache that may come from readers being offended by something they saw on my blog.

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The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere