Little ones love literacy.
Music is magic!
Child Writers are Courageous
Writers have to be courageous. I model this for students by embracing the process myself. I write and revise songs and stories in front of my students and their parents - in real time - so they can see the process. Just as we model reading and writing, we also model bravery. Indeed, the very writing of this blog puts my ideals on the line and is an act of bravery, a model for my students.
For ten years, I taught Music and Literacy at a school. At the end of each school year, the kindergartners performed songs on stage in a performance called "Spring Sing." Every year, before we went on stage, a couple of students would say they were scared. I told them, "When you are scared, you have to be brave. Being brave is doing what you know you need to do, even if it's scary."
The goal of perfection is a dangerous one that breeds inaction and fear. Perfectionism results in fear because we know that perfection is unattainable. Letting go of perfectionism and...
Happy New Year!
January is my favorite month of the year. It's my birthday month, and, in January we celebrate one of our country's heros: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
I also enjoy setting New Year's goals. Let's be clear - I always enjoy personal development - any time of year.
The concept of a year, and time in general, is enigmatic. Time is a continuum, and dividing it into units - seconds, days, weeks, months, and years - is a big concept for kids to understand. So be sure to teach and review it often. Sing days of the week songs, and months of the year songs. Sing "It's a New Year!"
It's hard for grownups to understand time, too. All I know is, the older I get, the faster it moves.
I wrote a new song, "It's a New Year." Listen to it on the blog, and let me know what you think of it.
Ask your children (four and older) what they want to do this year. Maybe they want to learn to ride a bike, swim, or tie their shoes. Maybe they want to sing more. Or, maybe they...
Members of Sing into Reading receive excellent instruction for children teaching literacy through music and love. For a limited time, members will also receive instruction for parents: "Teach Your Child to Read With Music and Love." Check out this sample class, "Creating a Literacy-Rich Environment."
You know those moments where you feel like you are in a Capra fim, and everything feels right? I call them "rosy moments." Cherish them.
I have two boys, 12 and 14. When I think back on their babyhood and when they were young children, I remember a few rosy moments. (And I remember a few "not-so-rosy-moments.") The rest is a wash.
When you find yourself in a rosy moment, cherish it. Write about it. Save it.
Cherish the rosy moments.
Gratitude is a two-way street. The more you give, the more you get.
I am receiving gratitude from people who are thankful for the Thanks and Giving Celebration. Here’s the thing: I am so grateful to you for supporting this dream of mine to teach literacy through music and movement.
Choose gratitude. Every minute of every day you have a choice. You can choose to complain about what you do not have, or be thankful for what you do. Choose appreciation. Choose gratitude. You can find things to be thankful for, even when things are not going well. That's when it is especially important to practice gratitude.
Gratitude, like love, creates what I call "rosy moments." Cherish them. Savor them. Make them last. Writing down what you are grateful for will help you remember the rosy moments and make them last longer.
There are many benefits of using a gratitude journal, including closer relationships, improved physical health, reduced aggression, better sleep,...
This blog is one you can share with the kids.
I talk about choosing appreciation and gratitude.
Please join me November 27 at 11:30 am EDT for the Thanks and Giving Celebration, a free sing-along for kids and their grownups. Sign up here: www.singintoreading.com/thanks-and-giving
And here are some quotes on gratitude for the grownups:
Stephen Richards: “When you express gratitude for the blessings that come into your life, it not only encourages the universe to send you more, it also sees to it that those blessings remain.”
Todd Stocker: “Thankfulness creates gratitude which generates contentment that causes peace.”
Zig Ziglar: “Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.”
Henri Frederic Amiel: “Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness...
Today, I want to talk to you about being kind to yourself. I belong to a writing group. We meet weekly to share goals, accomplishments, work, accountability, and critique. And lately, more than enything else, my writing group has been serving plenty of encouragement and self-care reminders. (Which I desperately need.)
Like most parents and teachers, I spend most of my time giving to others. And I enjoy giving to others. But sometimes, (maybe often), I forget to fill my own tank first. In a Reiki session on Friday, I remembered what it is like to receive - and I highly reccommend it!
In my writing group, a friend reminded me of the metaphor of having to fit some big rocks, pebbles, sand, and water into a jar. If you fill the jar first with sand, water, and pebbles there is no room left for the big rocks. But if you place the big rocks first, then the pebbles, then sand, and then water, you can make it all fit. She reminded me that life is like that and we need...
This original song is about being kind.
Let's all remember to be kind. Please join me in celebrating World Kindness Day, November 13. Check it out here: https://worldkindness.org/
I will be on the radio this Wednesday, November 11, at 8 pm EDT. The station is We Act Toledo, WAKT 106.1. It can be live streamed on toledoradio.org.