Archive | Education

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Graduation … to what?

It’s graduation time! Celebrations of educational accomplishments are both appropriate and welcome in June…but only if they are warranted. Have you noticed that just about anywhere folks talk or write about the importance of literacy in becoming well-educated they always add the word skills after their focus? It is common when one discusses “reading,” regarded as […]

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School’s out. Education is in.

Memorial Day! Summertime! School’s out. Now what?! The largely quiet local school now echoes the footsteps of maintenance workers and custodial staff. There’s a radio playing somewhere down the long, newly-polished hall. Office folks are relaxed in going about their work. Lots to do, but no worries about interrupting or interfering with teaching or learning. All […]

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Two Sides

For elementary school children, there are basically just two kinds of books (if we ignore poetry), Fiction and Non-fiction. Fictional books present to the reader created characters living created lives, experiencing created joys while dealing with what are frequently universal human problems. NON-fictional books typically use lots of different visuals interspersed with carefully structured expositional […]

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What Counts as Good Shared Reading?

What’s the best assessment of the educational value of a daily shared reading experience? By shared reading I mean that special kind of reading that happens when two or more people share a book together. This includes the lively (I hope) book transcription by a sufficiently experienced reader that then evokes the sharing of personal reflections about each book’s content […]

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At a Loss for Words

The English language is a word magnet and vocabulary generator. English speakers pick up terms from other languages and even create new words almost effortlessly, and before we know it, a new word or phrase is considered fully English! The best part is that every new word adds power to the English language, multiplying its potential […]

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ImPRESSive Books

When taking into consideration all of the inventions since long before the modern era, our progress in communication, transportation, medicine and government all pale in comparison to the impact of the movable-type printing press that has given us mass-produced books. Allowing us to share ideas and sentiments across the globe, and to communicate our culture and […]

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Take It Apart, Then Put It Back Together 

Today, Stefan Åge Hardonk Nielsen, an English teacher at Vonsild School near Kolding, Denmark, is leading his young students in translating simple English picture books into their native Danish language. These U.S.A. focused books were originally published in English for “new readers” of any age, but are deemed appropriate content for all children ages birth though early primary. Mr. Nielsen’s students […]

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Trash or Treasure?

I walked my dogs on a recent trash collection day. It was windy and we came across a trash bin that had blown over. I stopped to upright it and tried to pick up refuse that had spilled out and was still within reach before it blew down the street. One item was a 3rd–grade worksheet. It had lots of […]

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Girl Power: History Lessons and Challenges

I’m enjoying Women’s History Month. It is supported by The U.S. Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum with abundant research and memorabilia to showcase and educate about women’s  abundant contributions to the world. […]