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Reading
When I was a third grader at Clara Barton Elementary School in Fargo, North Dakota, my principal Miss Minnis held an assembly where she showed us home movies of her summer trip to Australia.  I was amazed at the existence of such a large a country so far away from the U.S.  We learned the...
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Summer is officially here, and many parents–after homeschooling their kids for the last three months–are wondering whether they should keep schooling their kids to make up for a potential ”summer slide” or just let them enjoy the summer.  I come down strongly on the side of enjoying summer, but that doesn’t mean learning need not...
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Six-year-old Timothy likes to stand up and walk around while eating his dinner.  He plays basketball or hockey while watching TV.  When reading with his mother, he moves the book up and down, swings his legs back and forth, and makes it hard for her to focus on the words that they’re reading together. Nine-year-old Caleb...
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First, my complaint:  I don’t like the direction that reading instruction has taken in this country, moving as it has toward lock-step teaching of phonemic awareness, incessant teaching of reading comprehension ”skills” (e.g. finding the main idea, making inferences etc.), and ”close reading” strategies (where the child is restricted to just what is in the...
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The fact that music even exists is one of the marvelous things about being alive.  And Harvard professor Howard Gardner said that music is actually an intelligence.  However, in school, music is the first program to be cut out of the budget if there’s a financial crush, and many kids get to take music only two...
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