Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Playing the Whole Game

I've mentioned this book before, but Making Learning Whole by David Perkins really helped clarify my thinking on assessment. The key idea of the book is to Play The Whole Game.

The need to play the whole game is something that we intuitively understand. In basketball, we don't spend all day just working on dribbling or shooting, eventually, we go out and play an actual game. When painting, we don't just work on our shading, we paint pictures. We don't just work certain chords on a guitar, we play full songs.

Rhett Allain over at Dot Physics argues that grades are a shadow of the real thing. Very true and in fact, I plan to steal that analogy between 10 and 32,000 times over the next year. However, he doesn't go far enough.

School is a shadow of the real thing.

We spend our time working on skills in isolation under idealized conditions. There are exceptions, but most of the time, students are just doing shadows of the real thing.

And that's ok. Our students aren't going to get LHC access or write a novel or create new historical knowledge.

Instead, we focus on creating mini-games. I think Perkins might call them scrimmages, but I could be making that up. Sometimes you don't have uniforms and a ref so you go and play 3 on 3 in the park. That's a mini-game.1

This is an assessment blog though so I'm not going to focus on creating mini-games (sorry).

In a whole game, you are rarely ever told what skill to use. Most often, the opportunity arises, you identify the need to use a certain skill, and perform the skill.

This is all a roundabout way of saying I like topics over skill lists.2

Skill lists fall short here and we are in danger of falling into the trap of reductionism. In a skills list, you are usually asked to just use the tool, not to pick the right one and definitely not asked to modify it to fit our needs.

Yes, I break down the game into separate skills. Yes, I individually assess those skills. But eventually, I'd like to see those skills in action. My topic scores tell me how they do at playing the whole game. I fully admit that Motion is a vague name for a topic score. But what I really want them to be able to do is measure the motion of something. So they need some vocab and some measuring skills and some formulas and they definitely spend a lot of time practicing the math (Perkins says to work on the hard parts without getting stuck in "elementitis.") In the end though, I want to be able to tell them, "Figure out how much faster you'd get to the mall if you skateboarded instead of walked" and see that they know how to put all those pieces together.

In an earlier post, I mentioned Kate's modeling project. Yes, Kate wants her students to be able to do all sorts of different mathy stuff. But really what she wants her students to do is gather some data, pick a function, justify why they picked it, explain what they're looking at qualitatively and quantitatively, and draw some conclusions (or something like that).

It seems if you include a water tank, you're golden. What's happening here? What skills do I need to pull out of the hat? How is this different from the frictionless, no air resistance, problems we usually deal with?

Note: Even though I'm using "real world" examples, they don't have to be.

Can you create a skills lists for the whole game? Sure. But not nearly as well. You end up in this troubling pattern of having some skills being worth more than others and you'll probably do some strange weighting system that nobody gets. You lose the mental picture a topic creates that "this skill" will help me in "this game." You're also far more likely to include the one-offs with skill lists.3

Anticipated objections:

I can't assess every standard during a single mini-game. 
Well yeah. Chris Sharma doesn't need to dyno (30 seconds in) every hold, but should the need arise, he uses it appropriately. That's what's important; not that students are forcing the round skill into the square test because they know they need to to use that skill and are being directly tested on it.

If it's a crucial skill, most of us are deft enough at creating the conditions that the need for that skill will present itself. If it doesn't ever, that should tell you something about the skill itself.

Topics don't give me detailed information for remediation.
I think that's a legitimate argument. There's an extra step involved in drilling down to the standard. I've tried to fix that by adding traffic lighting of my individual standards to my tracking sheets. But look at the other way around. Doing and assessing the whole game gives information that's meaningful and beyond basic regurgitation. It's good to perform the skill, but now you can see if they know when to use it and if they can break from the algorithm if the situation demands it.

It gives information to the student as well. He or she can see how this fits into the bigger picture and how this skill is used in the whole game. Anyone can move their hand up and down and dribble a basketball. It's not until you're actually playing a game when you realize that there's more to it than that.

Everyone who's played a sport knows this. You practice what you can. You go out and play. You watch film to break down your jump shot. Or more likely, while playing you realized your left hand is still weak and you need to practice.You practice. Then you play again.

My state has the most random set of standards.
It's really hard to find the whole game in the state standards miasma. The state of California gives me a list of slightly less than 60 things to teach. Some of the standards, like this one
Students know the appearance, general composition, relative position and size, and motion of objects in the solar system, including planets, planetary satellites, comets, and asteroids. 
end up lumping a few standards together. Once unpacked I end up with 80ish.  Some of you have more than 100.

This is stupid.

You've got two choices. Race through and spend 1.8 days on each standard. Or focus on playing the whole game. Pick 3-5 Whole Games a quarter. Do something with those isolated skills. Assess it. Remediate the hard parts. Replicate the successes. Repeat.4

Play the whole game. Assess the whole game.

1:If you click on the Amazon link, the first review gives a quick rundown of the seven points David Perkins gives. If you're a UbD or PBL/PBL fan, you are likely doing a pretty good job with the mini-games.
2: It also creates a learning progression.
3: Standards that don't go anywhere should be mentioned, not assessed, but that's a different issue.
4: It doesn't have to be a project. You can get at the whole game with a standard written test. It'll just be a lot more open-ended than any skill test you're used to making.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Dieting and other endeavors doomed to fail

This is my attempt to clarify my last post with a story.

About two years ago I was having dinner with my mom and one of her friends. Her friend, Sarah, was on the Atkins diet while my mom was on a diet of her own.

Fast forward to now and my mom is on her third different diet (now a vegan) while Sarah is still on the Atkins. 

I'm going to ignore the relative health merits of different diets and just focus on one thing:

Why was Sarah able to stick with her diet?

Notice that both of these diets had the same goal: LOSE WEIGHT. But Sarah stuck with her diet while my mom moved on. It could be a personality issue (perhaps) or it could have something to do with the results each one was seeing (not in this case).

However, I think there's a larger issue that relates to my last post.

Sample of my mom's diet instructions:
1400 calories per day. No more than 15% daily fat intake. No more than 6 oz of (non-fish) meat per week. No added sodium. No more than 5 ingredients in a packaged food. All grains must be whole. Start every meal with a salad. Drink a full glass of water at every meal.

Sample of Sarah's instructions:
Don't eat carbs.

I think the implications are clear and feel free to stop here. I'm going to go on because I'm a chronic over-explainer. (mansplainer?)

Clear goals are not enough. Lose weight. Quit smoking. Start exercising. Be a good student. Pay attention. Those all are clear goals.

Motivation is not enough. Although I didn't actually ask my mom, I'm going to go ahead and assume that she wanted to lose weight.1 Also, despite what they might tell you, every student wants to feel successful.

Too much instruction is as bad as too little. I am in hate with goals given without any direction on how to achieve them. However, it's just as bad to legislate every step. Look at what my mom had to do. That is not sustainable. Your brain gets tired of dealing with all of that.

Successful completion of each step is ambiguous. Short of carrying around a scale, you're eyeballing weights all the time. Is that a full serving? How many calories are in there? How many ingredients do you think that has? You're basically guessing most of the time.

Imagine my mom seeing an appetizer spread at a party.2 She's got to figure out the nutrition content and the ingredients. She's got to figure out the weight of the meat. She has to do some mental calculations to figure out how that fits into her daily caloric intake. She does this for everything that's going on her plate.

Sarah, on the other hand, walks up the appetizer spread. She asks, "Is this a carb?" and grabs whatever is appropriate.

Now imagine that both my mom and Sarah had to factor a quadratic while doing all that.

If you want to change, having a goal is not enough.  Motivation is not enough. You need a few, specific steps to take and it should be clear if you're doing it right.3

If you need to think your way through every meal, your diet is going to fail. You'll revert back to your old eating habits because your brain simply gets tired of dealing with it all the time.

If your student needs to do the equivalent of calculating calories for every action they take in class, they're going to fail and revert for the same reason.

Next time you're planning on creating change, just remember: No carbs.

Extension question:
What does this have to do with standards-based grading, err, whatever Cornally and Cox want to call it?

1. That would have been a good convo. "So..Mom...Did you even WANT to lose weight?"
2. Hopefully that's the last time I ever type the words "Imagine my mom."
3. Some of the best moments occur while negotiating gray areas. You just can't spend your entire day in the gray areas and expect to sustain your momentum. Usually, gray areas should be targeted, not stumbled into. 

Final note: I STILL haven't finished Switch yet but there's a definite possibility they may use this as an example later on. I did a Kindle search and couldn't find "Atkins" anywhere, but if this example pops up I'll be sure to credit it later. Either way, most of the ideas here can be found in that book. I can't give a full recommendation until I finish it but it has at least given me some food for thought and a really nice study on radishes and cookies which I hope to blog about later.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Virtual Conference on Soft Skills:The Other Half of the Battle

Visit the Soft Skills Convention Center

Riley had the very excellent idea for people to post about building soft skills in class. Initially I wasn’t going to do this because I don’t think I’ve got a lot to offer in this area. If you haven’t noticed, I’m a bit of a one trick pony. I succumbed to peer pressure though, so here it is.

This may be the first post I've done about something I'm planning to do instead of something I've actually done. Thus, I have no idea how this is going to work in practice, but this is the first time I have a glimmer of hope in this area.

Here we go.

I grew up watching Saturday morning cartoons. One of them, GI Joe, had these public service announcements at the end of every show and the tagline was "Knowing is half the battle." I learned valuable things like don't run away from home. The dirty secret of GI Joe is the other half of the battle, the doing, is usually the much harder part.

I have been critical before of people who tell their kids what to learn, but not how to learn. That doesn't just apply to academic skills, but non-academic skills as well. I teach 8th graders in a low-performing school with a high poverty and ELL rate. It’s not that my kids don’t want to be good students. It’s that they have no idea how to become one.1

My good students do certain things automatically. If you ask another student to describe a good student, eventually it will come out that this is just "how they are." What I've struggled with for years is to help students see that these behaviors are learned. They can become a part of everyone.

There are two things I’m synthesizing: Positive Deviants and Don’t Break the Chain.

Postive Deviants: I first came across this idea from Atul Gawande in the book Better. Subsequently, I’ve read a Fast Company article and a passage in Switch2.

The quick overview: Telling is not enough. If it was, I could pull off a Socratic seminar and my former college roommate could quit smoking. Positive deviants are those people who thrive in the same environment. Showing people positive deviants gives both a message that it's possible and a model to follow. Click on the Fast Company link and read the story or better yet buy the books. How do I know that examining positive deviants works? Check out all those blogs over there on the right side. My positive deviants. I can count on one hand the number of time I've taken and used something from a formal professional development workshop, but I'm ripping stuff off wholesale from my blogging friends.

Don't Break the Chain: This one comes courtesy of Lifehacker. The story is that Jerry Seinfeld needed to work on writing every day, so he put a big calendar up on his wall. From the article:
He said for each day that I do my task of writing, I get to put a big red X over that day. "After a few days you'll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You'll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain."

"Don't break the chain," he said again for emphasis.

The overview: Identify the positive deviants in class. Create a list of specific behaviors these students engage in. You don't need to make a spectacle of it. I took some pictures of my students from last year both as I'm lecturing and when they're working in groups or individually. For whatever reason, my students are always fine with being examples for next year's kids. This can also be a pure brain storming activity as well.

Have each student pick ONE of those actions to do. Distribute calendars to the students. Each day they complete their specific action, they get to mark a big X on their calendar. If they break the chain, they write down their streak, pick another goal (or the same one) and start over. There's no prize and it's not a competition with others.

By combining a specific, doable task with a very gentle motivator, daily actions become habits.

Details: The list of actions should be highly specific and observable. “Pay attention” is not going to work. You’ve got to dig and find out what those students are doing to pay attention. How can you tell a student is paying attention? They track the teacher. They sit up straight.

Good actions to choose can be academic “Raise my hand to ask a question.” “Bring a sharpened pencil to class” or non-academic “Pick up a piece of garbage from the ground” or "Have my things ready before the bell rings."

I can't stress this enough. It has to be something that's really specific. Either they did it or they didn't. If you get into, "Well I did it most of the time," or "I think I did it but I'm not sure," you're doomed. In the Vietnam example, switching from two big meals to four smaller meals is specific. Eating healthier foods is not.

You should also make sure this is something that needs to occur every single day. As a teacher, I'm really tempted to put stuff like, "Complete all the notes in class" but I don't ask them to take notes everyday. The chain part only works if it's everyday. You'll be surprised how motivating it is not to break the chain.

Time limits help. I hate folding laundry and if I set a goal of folding all my laundry every day, it's not going to happen. Folding laundry for ten minutes every day I can do.

Last, you'll need to make the calendar really visible. The chain is the reminder. You've got to set it up so they see it every day at the beginning of the period. My kids are sticking the calendars in the portfolios where they track their progress.

After a certain number of days (10? 15?), students pick another behavior and add on. So in order to continue their chain, not only do they need to raise their hand at least once a day, but they also need to bring a pencil each day.

Isn't this just behaviorism? Well...yeah, I guess. I've been critical of behaviorism in other places, but that doesn't mean I think it's all bad all the time. I just don't think it should be your guiding principal. I lean heavily on reflective discourse and you've certainly got to integrate that here. However, reflection without action doesn't lead to change. As the positive deviants example shows, knowing what to do isn't enough. If you're looking for another psych idea, self-efficacy is what's coming into play here. A student, who's been expelled from two schools and has a 0.33 GPA, knows they need to "work harder and start behaving." They just don't know where to start and probably don't even think that's possible. You give them something they can do, something that the best students do, and it starts to build. Something you do every day becomes a habit. Habits becomes attitudes and eventually it just becomes "how they are."

If you don't believe in the motivation of the chain give it a try. Get a big wall calendar, or go to, pick a goal, and start. I guarantee you once you get a few big red Xs going you'll want to continue. Then life will intervene and your chain will break.You'll be depressed for about 30 seconds and then you'll want to start the chain again.

I don't know how many times I've yelled at a kid and told them to Pay Attention, Work Harder, or Listen. I might as well be telling them to write their answers in French.

Start with one thing. Let them do it every day. Attitudes will follow actions.

1: This applies to everyone. I remember my first year listening to a presenter. He showed some writing samples that were tangential to his talk. I asked how he got his kids writing at such a high level. He replied, "Oh you just have to scaffold that really well." Thanks highly paid presenter. I just need to scaffold. Well that solves everything.

2: I have no idea how to reference a book in Kindle, but the Heath brothers call them “bright spots” instead of positive deviants. I don’t know why. The section on solutions-focused therapists is also relevant here, starting in what looks like Location 500 on my Kindle. 

Postscript: I'm about halfway done with Switch and the entire book seems to be based around the idea of taking small actions to solve big problems.They would call the behavior list "scripting the critical moves."

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Foundation of Standards-Based Grading

Two separate digital events collide:
  1. On twitter, Russ Goerend asked Shawn, Matt, and me (and any other takers) to try to define standards-based grading in one tweet.
  2. Kate Nowak drops this on us for Riley's Virtual Conference on Soft Skills.
and produce this:

Standards-based grading is built on trust.

Your students must trust you. The number one question I and others get is wondering if students will still do homework or other classwork if it's not worth points. I can answer with 100% certainty the answer is yes. Yes they'll do whatever you ask them to do, but only if your students trust you. They're trusting that what you're giving them will help them reach their goal. It's not busy work. It's not assigned out of habit. It's meaningful and will help them get from A to B. They will do it because they believe it will help them learn. They must trust that you are helping them get there.

You must trust your students. Allow them to surprise you. Give them freedom. Allow them to fail but allow them to learn from those failures. If you don't trust your students, they will fail. If you believe they won't do it if you don't make it worth points, then they won't do it. Trust your students.

You must trust yourself. Deep in your heart, you've got to trust that what you're giving them will help them learn. Everything you do is to help them learn. If you don't believe that, they're not going to believe it either. You need to trust yourself because the first day of school you're going to give a speech like this:
Hi. My name is Mr. Buell. You're used to being told what to do. You're used to getting something for doing, rather than learning. You're used to being rewarded for compliance, rather than creativity. Get used to something different. I will make suggestions to help you learn. You may choose to take those and in fact, I recommend that you take them. But only you know who are truly are and how you learn best. And hopefully, by the end of the year, you will know yourself a little better.

It's scary. Points are a shield.  When you take away that shield all you're left with is the trust you have in yourself that you're doing what's right.

Go ahead and build your topics and design your assessments. Do all the manual work that needs to be done; but always remember, that it's all built on trust. That work comes first and foremost. Start with a strong foundation and build something that lasts.

Trust each other. Trust yourself.

The last word comes from a series of tweets by @PersidaB that I'm putting together:
Before you can do SBG, I believe you need a transformation in the classroom. Where what you ask them to do becomes an opportunity to learn rather than another piece of paper to "complete". It's a shift in purpose and philosophy. And requires teacher and student training to shift thinking in purpose of why they're in the classroom.

Edit: Ok, now Frank gets the last word. Fantastic post by one of the SBG Borg: 

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Picard, not Data

Riley and Matt have told you before that it's a bad idea to average. Ken O'Connor will tell you that mindless number crunching is one of the cardinal sins of good assessment practice.1

But why?

Here's a story: I'm driving in my car. I check my odometer and I've just gone 25 miles. I check it again and I've now gone 50 miles total. I check again and I'm 75 miles away. I stop when I'm 100 miles away. If I take an average of each time I checked by mileage, I get 62.5 miles.

Totally unrelated story: I'm taking a test. The first time I get a 25%. I take it again and I get 50%. The next time I get 75%. Finally, I get 100%. If I take an average of each time I took that test, I get 62.5%

Learning is a journey. You cannot average different stages of the trip in any meaningful way.  Not only is it an inappropriate use of averaging but it sends the wrong message. It tells students that the 100% they got the last time was nothing more than experimental error. It dismisses the growth that has happened.

I usually disapprove of number crunching for grades in general. But I understand that some people are required to do it.

So when can you average?

Going back to my car trip: I stop my car and get out. I look at the odometer. I take a GPS reading. I check the road signs. I check my map. I've now got four different measurements for how far I am at this exact moment.

Multiple measures for standards-based grading are good. It is in fact a requirement that you take multiple and varied measurements in any good assessment system. Ideally these would all occur at the same time, but realistically they'd be within a few days of each other.

In this case, it is acceptable to average your results as long as you don't do it mindlessly. Not all assessments are created equal. I wouldn't even think of averaging my GPS results with the ones I got by using a ruler and a map.

If you have to average multiple assessments, they should meet two criteria:

  1. The assessments all need to be quality measures of the learning goal. A lab called "Measuring Motion" isn't a valid assessment of that learning goal just because its got it in the name. Check every assessment against your learning goals. Make sure you're assessing what you think you're assessing.
  2. The assessments all need to measure the same point in the learning progression. Usually this means temporal proximity. Don't average two assessments that occurred three weeks apart.
Here's where averaging gets really tricky:

The criteria must be evaluated on a per student basis. 

Assessments are not quality assessments for each and every student. The time span it takes to render an assessment obsolete varies by student. This relates directly to the statement by Chris Ludwig I quoted in my last post.

Your grades come from weighing the total body of evidence you've gathered against the standards you've set and communicated. Use averaging if it will help you make a better decision but don't let it make the decision for you.

To quote @johntspencer: "A simple glimpse at Star Trek reminds me that Data is meant to inform rather than drive." [source]

Data is useful. Data is good for advice. But Picard is the captain. Be the captain. Don't mindlessly average.

1: O'Connor says that if you must use mean, also take a look at median and mode to see if the mean is giving you a true picture of mastery.

Data image from:
Picard image from: 

Post publishing note: This was probably the first post all summer where I didn't link to Shawn's blog. I publish this, check my Reader.....and he also has a picture of Data! I swear, we're not the same person. He's much cooler than me. Literally. He curls in his backyard.

The Whole Darn Thing

This comes via @chrisludwig in the comment section of his own blog post.
....the more I read lately, the more I’m convinced that what we need is not standardized, objective grading systems but more subjective grading systems, those that allow the teacher to personalize assessment for each student and students to have a role in defining the assessments. This should be done, though, in the framework of high expectations and defined learning targets. I’m still new enough at this to be idealistic, but I think SBG is the way to allow this to happen.
I don't want to elaborate too much on this because I'm trying to peer pressure him into spinning it off into a separate post. All I want to say is that his comment captured everything I've tried to communicate in 50+ posts, but he did it in three sentences.

Go visit his blog. Follow him on twitter.

Friday, July 2, 2010

It's not the end, it's the beginning

Here's the gist: Your assessments are your starting point, not the finish line.

In the style of Gladwell or Pink, I'm going to spend the next 1000 words on something I just summarized in one sentence.

  1. There are 3 sheep, 4 goats, and 7 pigs on a boat. What color is the captain's hat?
  2. You're going on a field trip. Each bus holds 10 people. You've got 31 students going and 4 chaperones. How many buses do you need?
You've probably seen these questions before if you've read about mindless learning. A mindless learner might answer 14 to question one and 3.5 to question two. These are obviously wrong but notice the problem isn't a lack of basic math skills. Bad implementations of standards-based grading stem from the same problems. You might have all the stuff in place, but if you don't really get it, you're going to fail without realizing why.

The First Why: Why am I assessing so frequently?

If you think of a test as the thing you use to decide what to do next, standards-based grading makes a lot more sense. If you're still thinking of tests as something purely evaluative, you're going to feel like all you do is give your kids tests. I get that a lot from my teachers. When will I have time to teach stuff if I'm just testing all the time?

Yes, there are probably 15-20 minutes of "stop what you're doing and answer these questions" per week. I get that time back, and more, by using it to set the course for the rest of the periods, next day, or the rest of the week.

The old me would introduce something new. We'd work on it for a few days. Then I'd introduce the next new thing. Then the next new thing. Then I'd have a test on the last few weeks because, well, it's been a long time since my kids had a test. Then what did I do? I entered in grades. I'd be surprised by a few (good and bad) and then....move on. If some arbitrary amount of students didn't pass, I'd spend a day or two in front of the entire class "reviewing." Seriously. That's how I taught. I need to start drafting my own letter of apology.

Now? Sometimes I'll start with the new thing, sometimes I'll pretest.1 We get some feedback. I set up the next few days based on the results of the test. The non-intrusive assessment still takes place. I walk around. Give some feedback. Get some feedback. Adjust instruction again. Have a learning lab day. Then re-assess to see where we're going next.

If you look at the paragraph above, you'll notice the word feedback occurs three times while grading never enters the picture. Focus on feedback. Whenever possible, leave feedback but not grades or scores. I do spend time really breaking down certain assessments and I have been known to go all out with testing data. Most of the time, I'm simply looking to get and to give feedback. I get a lab report and take a look. I'll jot down a couple of specific pieces of feedback, including a next step for the student. The student can use my next step or choose their own. We get a chance to actually act on the feedback

Side note: One of the hidden benefits of standards-based grading is how much less time you'll spend "grading" papers. You're just looking for feedback. It's not this accounting game of going through and marking and tallying. You're also going to find yourself leaning really heavily on non-intrusive or only mildly intrusive forms of assessment. You'll ask questions as they're doing labs or working problems. You'll circle the room. You'll ask a question on a slide and choose your next slide based on the response. If you're worried about the paperwork that comes with standards-based grading, it's because you haven't changed your mindset yet.2

Teachers tend to worry about all sorts of technical details when it comes to standards-based grading. How will I input it into my gradebook? What should tests look like? How do I design my scales? That's important. But I'm going to freak you out a little here. That's the easy stuff.

The scariest part for me, BY FAR, was realizing that I might not know what I'm doing on Tuesday based on what happened on Monday. Take into consideration that I'm not an organized person. I don't write out my daily lesson plans and, despite being "required" to before I was tenured,  I've never actually submitted weekly lesson plans to my principal.  

So why am I assessing so frequently? Your assessments are the tools you use to help you move forward. The format is less important than what you do with them. You will like them. Your kids will like them. Ok, your kids will at the very least see the purpose of them. But if your assessments just go into this mystical gradebook and nothing ever happens to them, you've missed the point of standards-based grading. You're going through the motions and you're the kid who thinks 3.5 buses is a valid answer.

More mindful standards-based grading to come. Leave a comment if you'd like me to address something in the future. Here's a sentence starter, "I don't get why....."

Another last minute add! Twitter saves the day again. By @misscalcul8: Scroll to the bottom of this post for the words of wisdom from @PersidaB. Well said, Persida.

1: I plan on pretesting more this year. I didn't before because everything was new to my kids and felt it was just getting them discouraged. I've started a common assessment system this year and so we're going to pretest each unit, post test, then level the classes for a week. More on that when I actually, you know, figure it out.
2: I have now broken the record for "most times any blogger has linked to the same two other bloggers in consecutive posts."