Skip to main content

Posts

Organizing Books at Home

I admit, we are quite the book collectors at our house! Personally, I love getting my hands on any new children's book. We have books overflowing our office closet, most of which I use for my literacy methods courses at SHSU. Tanner's room recently had three bookshelves with books falling off the shelves of all of his favorite reads. The bookshelves became a problem because we never could find the title we were looking for. Whenever Tanner went to read, books would end up scattered haphazardly across his bedroom floor. I knew it was time to develop a better system for organizing our books. I've been on an organizing kick since buying our new home last year. I read Marie Kondo's book and watched her series on Netflix about organizing efficiently. I adopted several of her strategies, especially her folding techniques and the method for keeping items that spark joy. When The Home Edit came out on Netflix recently, I discovered two women who seem to find just as much pleas…
Recent posts

Getting Ready for a [virtual] School Year

There has been so many unknowns with this school year. Until recently, we weren't sure if we were going to be returning face-to-face or virtually. After being given the option to decide, we quickly learned that the first four weeks would be virtual for all students. Then last week, the district released a phase-in model with early grades returning two weeks before everyone else. It's been exhausting trying to keep up with the changes, but we've taken this summer day by day, trusting those that are in the impossible position to decide. 
As a family, we really never had much of a choice. My school is hybrid this year so I have to return to a face-to-face teaching environment weekly. My husband travels for work, which resumed in June, and he probably encounters more risk than any of our school environments. While I wish I could have waited until a vaccine to return in-person, especially being pregnant, that's just simply not a choice our family has right now. So, we've…

Looking Ahead to Fall 2020

I started to write this post as two separate entries: one from the perspective of a teacher and one from the perspective of a parent. I realized that this is nearly impossible because my experience as a teacher shapes my perspective as a parent just like my experience as a parent shapes my perspective as a teacher. Instead of separating my identities, I'm going to share how they shape my opinions, feelings, and thoughts going into this next school year. 
In all honesty, I do struggle with owning the identity as a teacher. I am not a K-12 teacher right now. While I spent the first part of my career in the public school system, I now work as a professor in a public institution. Yes, I still teach, I am in schools weekly, I conduct professional development for classroom teachers, and I get to work with students who will soon be teachers. But I do not have the same responsibilities or burdens of a K-12 public school teacher. I recognize this and hope that I do not speak as if I think t…

A Return from a Mini-Hiatus and the Lessons I Learned Along the Way

It's been a few months since I've posted and I am pushing past the feelings of guilt even while writing this post. My mini-hiatus from tasks that were unnecessary is the best thing I did for myself during this pandemic! 
As soon as the pandemic hit, I used this blog as a way to process the changes coming our way and to share resources with my students and families. While this platform helped me tremendously and seemed to receive positive feedback from friends and families, I knew I needed to revaluate my priorities. 
By April, I felt worn down and exhausted. I insisted on keeping the days home with my children enriched with meaningful activities, but quickly found that it meant I would have to sacrifice most productivity for work. I was wrapping up one stressful semester and planning ahead for three new completely online summer courses. At the same time, I was working diligently on a manuscript that I was hoping to send out by June, but is still sitting in my "drafts" …

Learning Letters and Sounds

When children first begin to recognize letters, they are filled with this undeniable energy. At first a child recognizes the first letter of their name, and then they begin finding them everywhere as if they have finally unlocked the secret to a special code.

As parents, we usually start with the singing of the alphabet. Children love the playful tune and usually and pick up on the repetition and rhythm at very young ages. However, if we only focus on those letter names in sequence, children are not actually recognizing the letters. Also, it can make learning the letter sounds much more challenging.

This blog post is dedicated to engaging activities that will help reinforce both letter and sound knowledge in both reading and writing. These activities are most appropriate for children ages 2-5 as they are first learning and playing with alphabetic knowledge.

READ, WRITE, and TALKOne of the biggest misconceptions about learning to read and write is that a child needs to know all of the…