About Samuel Glass

About Me

“Samuel Glass” is the collective name of a biological community of about 1 x 1014 eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells living on the third planet from a G2V star located at about 7.62 x 103 parsecs from the center of the Milky Way Galaxy in its Orion Arm. Formed since Julian Date 2438786.05139 and currently at coordinates 29.50979 -098.39031 and at 232 meters above mean sea level, this community of cells is composed mainly of O (65% by mass), C (18%), H (10%), N (3%), Ca (1.5%), and P (1.2%) and can be best detected by electromagnetic radiation in the 400 x 1012 to 790 x 1012 hertz range.

Mr. Glass has been certified to teach science as a secondary school teacher and has a degree in multidisciplinary science and other assorted certificates. He brings to the classroom his experiences as a freelance Web designer, a Texas Master Naturalist, a lab research assistant, and a corporate bookstore manager, where he spent just as much time listening to young people and their concerns as he did with performing administrative duties. Sam was also named Time magazine’s 2006 Person of the Year.

When he’s not up late mastering the fine art of parenting, learning how to be a better teacher, debugging script, or drinking black coffee, Sam blogs about science education and Web technologies for his own amusement on his personal website. Sam dislikes Piña Coladas, although he does like getting caught in the rain. He really enjoys teaching, learning, and exploring our natural world as well as books, music, and photography.

He is really, really lucky to be married to his best friend of over twenty years. Together with their young son, they are voluntary participants in a long-term experimental ecosystem consisting of three cats (Felis silvestris catus), eight fish (Carassius auratus, Paracheirodon innesi, Pseudacanthicus spinosus, and Xiphophorus helleri), two shrimp (Caridina japonica), two mud fiddler crabs (Uca pugnax), thirty-two plants (mostly Lamiaceae), and an unidentified species of snail.

About My Website

My journal uses WordPress. WordPress started in 2003 and has grown to be the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world. WordPress is an open source project, so that everything was created by and for the community. It is free to use without paying a license fee.

My commonplace uses MediaWiki. MediaWiki is a free software open source wiki package written in 2002, originally for use on Wikipedia. It is now also used by several other projects of the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation and by many other wikis.

My science lesson plans use Moodle. Moodle is a course management system, also known as a learning management system or a virtual learning environment, developed in 2002. It is a free web application that educators can use to create online learning sites.

More Information


You can contact me here.


Want to buy some merch? All the cool kids have them.


Do you want to buy me a cup of coffee? Yes, please!

A Personal Commonplace

Welcome to my own private Idaho on the Interwebs. Originally, I created this website in 2006 as a commonplace book because I had trouble keeping up with all of the various bits of information that I was accumulating as a new teacher. Even now, a large part of my site continues to be a repository for my own personal notes and reference materials about teaching high school science.

A Demonstration Of Concepts

From there, the website evolved into a test platform for showcasing the various concepts behind the so-called Web 2.0 movement as described by Tim O’Reilly, where World Wide Web applications are used to facilitate collaboration between people, often with content created by the users themselves. Such applications include weblogs, wikis, podcasts, RSS feeds, social networks, file-sharing programs, and the various mashups of those things.

Classroom 2.0

Then it occurred to me that the Web 2.0 philosophy about collaboration and information-sharing was very similar to the philosophies behind science and education. The Web 2.0 movement could be aligned with constructivist learning theory, where students with different sets of experiences discover concepts using their own terms, often by working together. In this context, the World Wide Web becomes a teaching tool for active learning and the teacher becomes a facilitator between the content and the students.

I find that such use of the World Wide Web to be right in line with how young people, for good or ill, acquire information and interact with each other on the Internet. Whether we like it or not, those of us who are in the teaching field need to adapt to the changing landscape of student technological culture.

Limits And Concerns

I have no problem drinking the Kool-Aid when it comes to talking about the major ideas behind Web 2.0, but I do feel that a heavy dollop of pragmatism needs to be added. I am aware that there is a lot of concern over the possible misuses of Web 2.0 social networking: impolite conduct, inappropriate content, and questionable practices. And these misuses can be performed by all parties concerned; how should we even act in a digital society?

Especially relevant to teachers are those circulating news stories that illustrate issues of privacy, censorship, and free expression. These stories often influence employment decisions, educational relationships, and even legal actions. In response, many school districts keep a tight leash on what actually can be accessed on school servers by both teachers and students.

For these concerns and other reasons, my personal website is not 100 percent Web 2.0-compliant (whatever that actually means) and it remains to be seen how successful my attempts will be in incorporating some of these applications into my own classroom.

Nonetheless, I feel that some Web 2.0 components, if properly facilitated, can serve useful educational functions in the twenty-first century classroom.