About Jim

Teacher. Physics, Astronomy, and Space are my interests. Wooded area out the back door. This blog is about these and more. I also blog with Melanie at Our View From Iowa.

My first 23 years as a teacher were in Illinois teaching physics to gifted teens and reading skills to prison inmates. I ran summer teacher institutes at Fermilab. Walked inside the Tevatron accelerator tunnel and some detectors. Stood in a 3 Tesla magnetic field which enhanced my personality a lot.

Here are a with a few signposts along my life journey.

Taught an additional 15 years in Iowa at one of the top high schools in the nation. Coached a national champion engineering team in 2007.

Concerned about climate change, the poor funding of R&D, hunger and poverty, campaign finance reform, restrictions on voting rights, the war on women.

I like to see thoughtful comments from readers. It is greatly appreciated when a reader takes the time to consider what the post said, follow some links, and offer reactions and their own insight. I enjoy discussion. That’s a trait from my teaching days.

Eye candy and pretty pictures might show up in some posts. Mostly, I leave those things to others. I am interested in telling a story about something interesting in the world.

Join me. Comment. Re-blog. Give credit. Thank you.


69 thoughts on “About Jim

    • Thank you for your recent visit and nice comment. I appreciate that you took the time to do that. Yes, astronomy and the other sciences are very special to me. I hope you will come back and read more of my posts.

      I will take a look at your blog when I am using a better computer. This iPad makes it difficult to explore easily.

      Kind regards… Jim

    • That was so nice of you. I just got back from viewing your blog about the awards for you. I noticed my blog on your list and felt humbled. It has been a pleasure to be in touch with you and your writing. Thank you very much.

      Does being nominated mean I need to do anything? I’m new to this aspect of blogging and how it works.

      Again… kind of shocked. 😯

      • No, participation is optional. I should have probably posted the rules on my post, but I’m not one to follow rules too closely myself, uh-oh … I hope awards police are not reading! I suggest visiting Fae’s blog for better explanation.

        You can display the award icons proudly somewhere on your blog, if you like! You also now have the privilege to pass them on to your own nominees.

  1. Jim … just an FYI …. It’s Friday afternoon, and unusually so, this is my first check of the day due to family illness. I faithfully monitor my Spam folder, thus found your comments. WP gets funky at times.

    • Oh, good. I was afraid you had blocked me. But, it worked this morning just fine. Thanks for the info.

      I hope things will be alright regarding the illness.

    • Welcome. I hope you find many things of interest. I appreciate that you stopped and commented. By the way, that is a cute icon picture. 🙂

      Come back often. 🙂

        • Thanks. My husband and I very much enjoy encouraging his curious and developing mind. It’s wonderful to see him discover nature, his environment and navigate around his new world. it really has been so much fun!!! Thanks again.

  2. Wow, I’m so happy I found your blog after you liked one of my posts. A former scientist myself (chemist, actually) I’m very interested in developments in science and teaching it to high school/undergrads.

  3. As a poet, I really love astronomy, because of its vocabulary, its beauty, its “reality”… your pages about are as amazing as interesting, you have a great blog, thank you for sharing 🙂

    • What a great message to wake to in the morning. It helps start my day on a positive note.

      I hope you come back often. Keep looking up.

      Thank you.

  4. I like bloggers with something to say and who teach at the same time. I’ve meant to click on your blog for a long time and now that time finally arrived via Shore Acres blog.

  5. Your blog is great, Jim… and I love all the pictures you post, which make every entry a treat! I have to remember to check in more often!

  6. really like the site and your work, esp how you interact with your readers… a lesson learned… thanks and keep up the good work 🙂

  7. I’ve never been in the Tevatron tunnel, but I’ve been at Fermi a couple of times. Climbing through the Atlas magnet at CERN, then under construction, is my equivalent. I’ve felt the eddy-current drag on the metal shoe-lace ringlets in my shoes from walking on a magnet. Haven’t calculated what the magnetic field was there. More at home in magnet technology than astronomy, so I am happy to use your guidance. Love woods too.

    • I envy your Atlas experience. Last week on PBS, there was a program featuring much of the work done by Atlas and the scientists chasing after a Higgs Boson.

      I will be happy to guide you. Thanks for stopping to comment.

  8. I did not realize, you also bogged on “View from Iowa” which I enjoy. Browsed around here and oh boy…so much to learn. Need to learn more….warm greetings form Ohio, Johanna

  9. […] (voluntary we hope) to travel to Canada. If you want to know more about the force field, just ask Jim in IA. He is a physics teacher and found a great YouTube video to show how the force field works. […]

  10. Love the new layout .. .and the header is awesome. FYI: My holiday party is in progress this weekend, … and I have a new supplier of gifts … but you can still wear your Area Man shirt.

  11. Hi Jim. You’ve probably seen you around, I love your blog! 🙂 I can’t seem to find any of you contact information though, I’ve been asked to create some illustrations that I think your input would be invaluable as I am not an astronomer or physicist (although I would love to be!) so I don’t know if what I’m creating is scientifically accurate. Please drop me an email if you are available! jlaw[at]eso[dot]org 😀

  12. Hi, Jim, I just happened across your blog, and think it’s great. I really like your astronomy posts (I haven’t had a chance to check much of the rest out yet). Keep up the great work!

  13. Hi Jim, I comment over at thekitchensgarden.com a lot. I wonder if you will be viewing the solar eclipse in August? If so, where will you go to view it? We finally found a place to stay in Kansas in order to see it from the Missouri location (in the band of highest visibility). My husband is very excited.

    • Hi
      Very definitely planning on it. We will bring our daughter and two grandkids along. We are close enough to the centerline to drive and not stay. At least that is our hope. We saw one in Germany in 1999. It is a very fun event.

      Thanks for your contact, Kim.

  14. Hi Jim,
    I just saw this about NASA’s CitSciCon this weekend, in the weekly email from Zooniverse. You probably already know about it, but I just wanted to be sure! 🙂

    CitSciCon, a two-day celebration of NASA citizen science projects and people will be taking place on Friday and Saturday (May 21-22). This event features a series of Zoom-based talks and events, and features a keynote presentation by our very own Zooniverse PI Chris Lintott on Saturday, 22 May 2021 at 12-1:30pm US Eastern time! Register/RSVP for that event, along with many other great sessions, by visiting the CitSciCon website, or tune in to the live stream on the Citizen Science Association’s YouTube page.

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