Lets here it for the Dads!

October 10, 2014

All too often I hear the lament that Dad’s don’t read to their children and this is my opportunity to applaud the Dad in this poem. If children are to become life long readers, they need both moms and dads and everyone else to read to them when they are young.

A love of story and the closeness that is communicated when a child is read to is very likely the single most important reason why children become adults who love to read and know how to find pleasure in reading. Readers are born on the laps of their parents.

The Story of Ferdinand the Bull” by Matt Mason

Dad would come home after too long at work
and I’d sit on his lap to hear
the story of Ferdinand the Bull; every night,
me handing him the red book until I knew
every word, couldn’t read,
just recite along with drawings
of a gentle bull, frustrated matadors,
the all-important bee, and flowers—
flowers in meadows and flowers
thrown by the Spanish ladies.
Its lesson, really,
about not being what you’re born into
but what you’re born to be,
even if that means
not caring about the capes they wave in your face
or the spears they cut into your shoulders.
And Dad, wonderful Dad, came home
after too long at work
and read to me
the same story every night
until I knew every word, couldn’t read,
just recite.

A challenge to parents: How much technology is good for their children?

September 21, 2014

The start of the school year brings many challenges to parents. A key concern is how much technology is effective and appropriate for young children, pre-school  through the early years of school?  There can be no conversation about how children learn the skills they need to become ready to learn to read without addressing the […]


What children need to be successful in school.

August 25, 2014

Talented teachers + engaged students +challenging curriculum = Success for all. To make this equation into a reality, children need devoted and caring adults to be successful in and out of school. As a new school year approaches, the conversation about what makes for good schools and good teachers begins. What do children actually need […]


Ongoing Dilemma: Which comes first: reading the book or seeing the movie?

August 14, 2014

I love the book The Giver but I feel ambivalent about it’s movie release on August 15. Since stories enter through the back door of our imaginations, they speak to our hearts and minds in very personal ways. I worry that if a person sees the movie before they read the book, they will know […]


Diane comments in NYT:We often find what we need in the stories we read.

July 22, 2014

I am working with a young woman who never ceases to amaze me with her capacity to feel and act compassionately toward others. And I am also struck on how hard this woman is on herself, with standards she would never inflict on others. My hope was that through the compassion she felt for the […]


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