Category Archives: Uncategorized


The True Meaning of Success



So That’s Why………

In my primary-grade classes, we use crayons in much of our work, and the kids really seem to enjoy that aspect of Spanish time. Many of them don’t have crayons at home, so school was the place to express budding artistic talents. But it was quite perplexing that there was an unusual amount of broken ones.

I noticed especially the kindergarten and first graders had lots more when I collected at the end of class. So on Monday, I asked one little boy why he thought  this occurred so much. Was it just being vicious? Or a lack of respect for the property of someone else?

He told me with a straight face, “Ms. __________, when the crayon gets way down to the paper, we want some more color, but we can’t get to it. But if you break it in half, there’s more.” So there it was–their own version of necessity being the mother of invention. Their lack of patience and still-developing finger dexterity wasn’t  enough to peel the paper from the crayons, so they just broke it, and voila!, more color was revealed!

A New School Year, A New Look

It’s a new school year, so I thought it was time to give tis blog an updated look–just like that September ritual of new school supplies, and lunch containers. It’s a cleaner, more fun appearance, and I hope you like it….let me know!

Writing Well–An Afterthought?

  Writing well, and with clarity seems  a skill overlooked  in city junior high grades.

    Realizing that an inordinate amount of  time is given over to anything but instruction–classroom management, paperwork, and other sundry matters, it’s a major challenge  to teach writing skills that will make a difference in academic performance.

    Looking at some 7th and 8th grades posted student work, I was truly disheartened at how ill-prepared many students are when it comes to expressing themselves on paper.

Continue reading

They’re Reading What?

   Being in a number of schools, one particular site has stood out as a “Why’d they do that?” when it comes to selecting class reading texts.

   Assigned to an unruly, inattentive 8th grade class, I always look through the available classroom materials to get familiar with what students deal  with daily.  While they were out of the room for an enrichment session, I took a look around.

      Not agreeing with most of basal readers in my district, [I don’t support a “one reader fits all” method], I came across the series used that marking period. To say the least, I was saddened and appalled at the same time. Continue reading


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“We must teach our children to resolve their conflicts their conflicts with words, not weapons.”

                                                         —Bill Clinton
                                                            former U.S. President