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Posted by on in Literacy

Reading aloud to kids is an experience that almost everyone who has spent time with children has in common. Whether you're a veteran teacher or a teenage babysitter, you've probably touched the magic that we create when we take the time to read with kids.

I've had some amazing experiences as a parent and a caregiver of reading aloud: the moment when a child recognizes the letters in their name, or a common word, or a rhyming pattern in the text or a repeated phrase or sound that they love to yell out at the top of their lungs.

"Clang Clang Rattle Bing Bang, Gonna make my noise all day!"

~ Robert Munsch, Mortimer ~

Equally amazing are the books that make me cry, the books during which my kids know they can expect mom to get choked up "Mommy, why are you crying... again?!? You know how it ends."

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Last modified on

Posted by on in General

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I have been out of the classroom – let me start over – I have not been a classroom teacher for over ten years. Technically speaking, as an elementary school assistant principal, I am in and out of classrooms every day. But … there is a huge difference between being in a classroom and running a classroom. Trust me, the increasing degree of difficulty of the latter is not lost on this veteran administrator.

This is why I want to take this time to thank you. And while I couldn’t possibly list all the reasons that I am grateful for what you do, I would like to highlight three that continuously amaze me.

1. We all need to see the doctor, dentist, or chiropractor from time to time—either when we are not feeling well or for wellness check ups for ourselves and our family members. I know that getting and making appointments can be difficult. Some waiting lists are months long. I am also aware of fact that health professionals see patients in the middle of the day.

Yet, you still make dentist appointments at 7 AM so you can get to school before your students arrive. You still take the latest prenatal check ups your doctor has available because your students have a test the next day and there is no way a sub could get them ready to add fractions with unlike denominators. And you still schedule appointments on your days off instead of on days in which school is in session because you want to be there for your students and your colleagues.

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Last modified on

Posted by on in General

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The first time it happened I cracked up. The little girl’s response took me totally by surprise. And then it happened again. Awesome! Totally awesome!

I remember like it was yesterday. A young girl, probably about six years old, walked past me wearing a hat with the letter R on it. I, being the outgoing and inquisitive person that I am, had to ask, what’s the R stand for? To which she replied—I could not make this up—Rrrrrr.

What!?

I was hysterical. I was expecting her to give me a name like Reagan or Riley. Or quite possibly her favorite team such as the Redskins and Reds. Nope. Instead, this innocent little girl gave me the sound that the letter R makes. And not only did she do this once. She gave me the exact same answer the following week. No prompting. I promise.

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Posted by on in General

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Star Wars has been a part of our collective childhoods since the seventies and with Disney planning on expanding the Star Wars presence in their theme parks, it looks like it will be for many years to come. It is here where I must hesitantly admit that my son, just six years old, is hooked. On Darth Vader!

Darth Vader!

One of the most evil characters ever created. He has a Darth Vader Christmas ornament that he once carries with him wherever  he went. One night he actually slept with it. Whenever we play Star Wars, he always gets to be Darth Vader and I am left to choose one of the other major characters. I don’t mind. Why would I, a grown adult, ever choose to play such an evil role?

Why would I want that kind of power?

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Posted by on in General

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He woke up crazy-early. 5 am to be exact. That in my opinion is too early for a little kid to be awake. And it was apparent by the way he behaved. Or didn’t, to be more exact. I brought a blanket and a pillow downstairs, hoping he would lie down and maybe–just maybe–fall asleep. Or at the very least, rest.

That wasn’t going to happen. At least not yet. He fussed. He complained. He acted as any kid would that was awake an hour and half earlier than normal.

But then something happened. His sister came down. That was what who he needed. You can see the pillow at his feet and the blanket behind his back. They were warm and comfortable. They couldn’t provide the warmth and comfort that he needed. But his sister could.

And she did.

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Last modified on