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Middle Years

Pets enrich classroom experience; provide opportunities for pro-social development

Pets enrich classroom experience; provide opportunities for pro-social development

May 24, 2017 | Posted in: Early Learners, Elementary, High School, Middle Years

When I was in elementary school, one of the teachers had an incubator with chicken eggs set up in her classroom. The whole school would buzz when the eggs hatched and the adorable, yellow, fuzzy chicks made their debut. Everyone wanted to be in that class since the students helped monitor and care for the […]

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A history lesson on New York school budgets

A history lesson on New York school budgets

May 12, 2017 | Posted in: Early Learners, Elementary, High School, Middle Years

On summer days when I was my children’s age, I spent a lot of time outside in the yard of our rural New York home. It was not unusual for cars to drive by our house slowly. The driver or the passenger, who looked to be as old as my grandparents did then, would gesture […]

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School nurses prepare students for success in the classroom

School nurses prepare students for success in the classroom

May 9, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years

The first time I took cupcakes in to my son’s class to celebrate his birthday, I was surprised when the school’s main office secretary asked me to stop in the nurse’s office first. The nurse pulled out a list of my son’s classmates and immediately caught one who had an allergy to an ingredient in […]

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Set students up for success during “the critical” hours

Set students up for success during “the critical” hours

May 1, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years

Apple CEO Tim Cook wakes up at 3:45 a.m. to get a head start on email, while former President Barack Obama, a self-proclaimed night owl, prefers to burn the midnight oil. Though for student success, it’s not the early morning and late-night hours, but the mid-afternoon hours that can make all the difference in helping […]

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Extracurricular activities forge important school connections

Extracurricular activities forge important school connections

April 7, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years, Uncategorized

My second- and fourth-grade sons are currently participating in an after-school art program at their elementary school. After each class, they share funny anecdotes about something one of the other kids said or did. And each Tuesday, they are excited to go to school because they know they have art after school. This is significant […]

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Eyes wide open: What parents should know about their children and drugs

Eyes wide open: What parents should know about their children and drugs

April 4, 2017 | Posted in: High School, Middle Years

For a parent, there is nothing more devastating than the loss of a child. It’s an ache that never goes away. In 2005, my brother and sister-in-law buried their oldest son, Sean, just before his 20th birthday. My nephew battled drug addiction throughout most of his adolescent years. His parents quietly forged a war against […]

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10 culturally-relevant books to inspire English language learners of all ages

10 culturally-relevant books to inspire English language learners of all ages

March 28, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, Middle Years

The summer before I entered fourth grade, a new girl moved into my neighborhood, just a few houses down from me. Her name was Tanya and she was from Sri Lanka. She spoke very little English, except for “hi,” “bye,” “yes,” “no,” and “thank you.” There wasn’t much dynamic conversation going on between us that […]

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Helping children get the best from stress

Helping children get the best from stress

March 22, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years

There’s a music video in my head that hasn’t been created yet. The late David Bowie and the legendary, nuanced rock band Queen had an iconic collaborative song with a hyper-thumping bass line later sampled by the infamous Vanilla Ice. You know what song I am talking about. In my video, a camera pans across […]

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Bridging the STEM gender gap

Bridging the STEM gender gap

March 16, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years

Today, although to a lesser degree than in the past, women remain underrepresented in the STEM workforce, with the greatest disparities occurring in engineering, computer science and the physical sciences. According to a 2016 report by the National Science Foundation, female students’ achievement and participation in science and math in grades K-12 was on par […]

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Sports specialization: Is it good for our kids?

Sports specialization: Is it good for our kids?

February 21, 2017 | Posted in: Elementary, High School, Middle Years

It was a pretty big deal. My 8-year-old daughter was dropped off that morning at her very first soccer camp. She’s been playing in a youth recreation league for a few years. It’s the kind of league where the coaches don’t keep score, but where you sometimes hear parents whispering summations to each other on […]

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