Tag: creativity

What We Can Do for our Kids in a Pandemic

What We Can Do for our Kids in a Pandemic
Clearly, our kids are hurting during this pandemic. One of the most poignant reminders of the pain experienced by students locked out of their normal lives is a three-minute film, Numb – a short film, created by Liv McNeil. McNeil admits that, “I for sure haven’t been enjoying quarantine, but some have it worse. We... Read more »

Back to School: Why a Seven-Year-Old Boy is Sad to Return

This is a journey into the mind of my seven-year-old grandson who is interested in many things. Just not what he’s learning in school. In fact, when I asked him if he was looking forward to starting second grade next week, his response was a resounding NO. School is so boring, he claims. My husband... Read more »

Grit, Creativity, Kindness, and Love: Life Lessons from my Grandkids

Having grandkids is a blessing for many reasons. They teach me far more than I teach them. Last weekend, I visited the Indiana gang of three, and I learned once again how young children have so many important life lessons to share if we only take the time to look. Over a short weekend, I... Read more »

Learning Through Play: Another Visit to Cherry Preschool

I walked into a classroom at Cherry Preschool in Evanston, Illinois to check out the recent activities and get my fix of watching preschoolers doing what they do best – learning through play. A brief disclaimer: This is the school I founded and directed until my retirement, so it is definitely my happy place. The... Read more »

Photos Become a Child's Voice

October is Photographer Appreciation Month, and before it ends I want to give a shout out to my granddaughter for whom photography has become a key into her mind. She has special needs that greatly limit her expressive language. I know she understands what I tell her and has plenty of thoughts and feelings about... Read more »

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night, Special Needs, and Photography

“The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.” (Sherlock Holmes from The Hound of the Baskervilles) In The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night, the narrator adds, “But he notices them, like I do.” Because the play based on this book just won a Tony award and... Read more »

A Third Grader’s 10 Ideas for School Improvement

Remember the old Dr. Seuss book If I Ran the Zoo? In it, young Gerald McGrew fantasized about what he would change to make the zoo more interesting. Well, I wondered what a child would change about her public school if she could. So I asked my 8-year-old granddaughter if she would like to be... Read more »

Kindergarten: Creativity Triumphs Again

Here’s the proverbial picture that’s worth 1,000 words, my grandson’s kindergarten worksheet when asked to write the word “you.” Yes, you can make the boy learn sight words, but you can’t stop him from writing them the way he sees them. Thank goodness he has a teacher with a sense of humor who didn’t force... Read more »

12 Picture Books 4 to 8 Year Olds Should Read

This is National Young Readers Week – a perfect time to post my feelings about the demotion of picture books for the 4-8 year old crowd. I first noticed this phenomenon a couple of years ago as a volunteer at my local elementary school’s bookstore. Kindergarteners rejected beautiful, hardbound, age-appropriate, “pre-read” picture books, selling for... Read more »

Creative Kid Defeats Kindergarten Worksheets

When my grandson started kindergarten this year, I worried. After all, he’s the kid I wrote about HERE who wondered when his preschool teacher would get her timeout. I shared my wishes for him and his fellow kindergarteners HERE. And I shared some of my ideas about how to make kindergarten more developmentally appropriate HERE.... Read more »