The public library in Sudbury, Ontario, has teamed up with a therapy dog group to give some kids a chance to read to a furry friend.
Monique Roy, the Greater Sudbury Public Library‘s children’s librarian, is a dog lover herself and has owned a therapy dog. She had been looking for a way to combine that part of her life with her passion for youth literacy. Thus began Reading Tails, a program to help kids aged 6 to 12 improve their reading skills by reading aloud to canine companions from Magical Paws Pet Therapy.
“Kids seem to react to the dogs a little bit better,” Roy told the CBC. “The dogs listen, they don’t comment, they don’t critique, and the kids feel like they’re gaining something. And also, they feel a connection with the dog — that they’re reading to the dog, they’re doing a service to the dog. So they just feel better.”
Margaret Julian has recently started bringing her seven-year-old smooth-haired Daschund named Liesl (named after the character in The Sound of Music) to the program. She believes reading to dogs relaxes children and is an enjoyable way to improve literacy.
“They can concentrate, and they can have fun at the same time. I have as much [fun] as they do, I think. I always have a laugh when I come here.”
David, a young boy who is taking part in Reading Tails, loves petting and cuddling with Liesl during reading sessions. A reporter asked him whether reading to a dog was different than reading to his mother.
“Yes, because mom doesn’t bark,” he said.
“The mediocre teacher tells.
The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher demonstrates.
The great teacher inspires”
– William A. Ward
Share with us an inspiring teacher story by placing a comment below.
Every once in a while, someone sends me something absolutely incredible that defies description.
Today’s blog post is about an article on teenage brains. It is so erudite and engaging I am not even going to attempt to summarise it. If you are a teenager or the parent of a teenager, I promise you it’s going to be a great 10 minute investment. Click on the hyperlink to access the original article.
This is a great message for all students, but also a really cool commercial. Enjoy!
Then maybe what you need is a degree, diploma, certificate or accreditation..
Seriously, sometimes the right piece of paper can make all the difference. In the food industry, a food hygiene or food safety supervisor course can be a foot in the door. In the professional fields, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Credits are a popular way for engineers, dentists, accountants and lawyers to keep up to date and advance their careers.
There is nothing worse than missing a critical element to practice the career you’ve always dreamed of, but even if you are in your chosen profession or industry, you can find yourself stuck or held back from the career fast track just because you don’t have the diploma or certificate that’s needed.
There was a time when an MBA was a ticket to business success – now with specialisations, there are a multitude of options that the serious career person needs to evaluate and assess.
Not everyone is going to get 5 university degrees like I did, across multiple disciplines including engineering, law, business, corporate governance and ecommerce. That’s not really the point.
The point is for you to find the missing piece of the puzzle that permits you to get to the ultimate job, position or role you aspire to. Maybe it’s the corner office with a fabulous view or it’s an international role that allows you to travel the world or it can be a domestic role that provides to your local community.
Have a look at studyfinder.com.au they might be able to help.
The educational system today has less and less influence on students than ever before. The infiltration of technology (Google) and communication modalities (Smartphones and Facebook) are destroying the traditional boundaries of school (discipline) and the ‘outside world’. When I was in school I studied and ‘focused’.
I am not advocating that all technological progress is bad, just that students are incapable of dealing with it (as are their parents) and until an optimal ‘balance’ is re-established, students will continue to sub-optimise their outcomes.
This is one of the most troubled generations and will unfortunately suffer the consequences for the remainder of their lifetimes – I know it’s a sad prognosis, but just as the war and great depression generations before them, they will take this to their graves.
Of course it’s not all bad – it’s just not as good as recent previous generations.
The good thing is that once this ‘passes’ and it will – things will get better, a lot better. Just not soon enough for ‘this generation’.
A more ‘visual’ analogy is the increase in obesity – those effects are (permanent) lifelong for this generational cohort – even though a small few within the group can become healthy and fit – most won’t.
Governments have the group/cohort/generation to deal with – not single individuals. That’s why their problems are so complicated and in the case of obesity, expensive (healthcare).
The great news is that there is ALWAYS HOPE for that special child who has the nurturing environment to ‘buck the trend’ and learns the skills to achieve – in spite of the odds.
I help try to help counteract these forces as much as I can with my student accelerated learning and speed reading programs – teaching a holistic approach that is founded on traditional foundational “how to study” principles that work for students of all ages.
LAST month, two kindergarten classes at the Blue School were hard at work doing what many kindergartners do: drawing. One group pursued a variation on the self-portrait. “That’s me thinking about my brain,” one 5-year-old-girl said of her picture. Down the hall, children with oil pastels in hand were illustrating their emotions, mapping where they started and where they ended. For one girl, sadness ended at home with a yummy drink and her teddy bear.
Grappling so directly with thoughts and emotions may seem odd for such young brains, but it is part of the DNA of the Blue School, a downtown Manhattan private school that began six years ago as a play group. From the beginning, the founders wanted to incorporate scientific research about childhood development into the classroom. Having rapidly grown to more than 200 students in preschool through third grade, the school has become a kind of national laboratory for integrating cognitive neuroscience and cutting-edge educational theory into curriculum, professional development and school design.
“Schools were not applying this new neurological science out there to how we teach children,” said Lindsey Russo, whose unusual title, director of curriculum documentation and research, hints at how seriously the Blue School takes this mission. “Our aim is to take those research tools and adapt them to what we do in the school.”
So young children at the Blue School learn about what has been called “the amygdala hijack” — what happens to their brains when they flip out. Teachers try to get children into a “toward state,” in which they are open to new ideas. Periods of reflection are built into the day for students and teachers alike, because reflection helps executive function — the ability to process information in an orderly way, focus on tasks and exhibit self-control. Last year, the curriculum guide was amended to include the term “meta-cognition”: the ability to think about thinking.
“Having language for these mental experiences gives children more chances to regulate their emotions,” said David Rock, who is a member of the Blue School’s board and a founder of NeuroLeadership Institute, a global research group dedicated to understanding the brain science of leadership.
That language is then filtered through a 6-year-old’s brain. Continue reading ‘Kids and brain science’
Several scientists were all posed the following question: “What is 2 X 2 ?”
The engineer whips out his slide rule (so it’s old) and shuffles it back and forth, and finally announces “3.99″.
The physicist consults his technical references, sets up the problem on his computer, and announces “it lies between 3.98 and 4.02″.
The mathematician cogitates for a while, then announces: “I don’t know what the answer is, but I can tell you, an answer exists!”
Philosopher smiles: “But what do you mean by 2 X 2 ?”
The logician replies: “Please define 2 X 2 more precisely.”
The sociologist: “I don’t know, but is was nice talking about it”.
Behavioral Ecologist: “A polygamous mating system”.
Medical Student: “4″
All others looking astonished : “How did you know?”
Medical Student : “I memorized it.”
If you think you’ve got problems – think again. Watch this video and see how perseverance and commitment pay off – for someone who really wants it. It’s not enough to “want it” – you need to be willing to do whatever it takes – sometimes literally!
I stumbled across an article that said Mark Wahlberg is going to get his high school diploma. What does it tell you when a multi-millionaire actor wants a high school diploma?
It means there is value in getting one. This is a man who’s seen more of the world than most and experienced things to fill 3 or 4 lifetimes yet he still feels a little intimidated by the process.
What does that tell you?
Education is worth something. It’s not just self-esteem issue. The stats are staggering, but let’s face it, most high school dropouts don’t care about the stats, but they might care about a RICH, SUCCESSFUL ACTOR going back to school.
So there you have it – ONE MORE REASON TO STAY IN SCHOOL!
I don’t know if you’ve ever used flash cards to learn something new, but they are a quick and easy way to test your memory. Now with the Internet, there are dozens of Flash Card sites,, but this one seems like a good place to start. It’s called Quiznet.
Have a look and remember – getting better grades is not about studying more or harder, it’s about studying better, smarter.
That’s what this blog is all about.
When you come across any tools like this, please let me know so I can share it with our readers and subscribers.
If you are struggling to learn a new subject, it might be because of your learning style. I cover this in detail in my study guide in detail, but one of our readers offers this great inspirational story that might help you.
I was helping Fred with his upcoming “electricity” exam last evening.
Fred is kinesthetic.. He loves stories- people’s experiences and all things sports.
He excels at and enjoys history, social studies as he lives the experiences of people from hundreds of years ago.
As you can guess… Fred was less than enthusiastic about electricity et al…
I helped him by making up a story about how RESISTANCE is just a bunch of tough guys in an electrical circuit, conductance is like a conductor of a bus bringing the volts to their “potential” and making a difference… and because it can be a long bus ride.. it’s important to keep the “INTENSITY” of the current high… etc…
He had already memorized the formulas and done the leg work.
He just needed to add meaning- a story – to what electricity is about.
It was pretty cool to see his physiology change right before my eyes. Ironically, with every new idea. I could see eyes LIGHT-UP – sorry couldn’t resist
He was excited, passionate and spent the next half hour telling me all about his plans for finishing this school year and what he will do differently next year !
Anyway, all this reminded me of an episode of WKRP, which I showed Fred, and thought you could use on your blog…
Have a Great Day !
Yale grad’s final essay gets new life after her unexpected death
This undated photo released by the Keegan family shows Marina, a 22-year-old Yale graduate, who penned her life’s lessons in a final column for the Yale Daily News. She died just days after commencement.
But the words of her work, “The Opposite of Loneliness,” have lived on.
The Massachusetts resident died in a car crash on her way to a vacation house on Cape Cod when the driver, Michael Gocksch, lost control of the car. Gocksch survived, but Keegan was pronounced dead on the scene.
The young writer was already making a name for herself in the literary world. She had published stories in the New York Times and had a job with the New Yorker she was about to start.
Her legacy is priceless and timeless and I share it with you here because all students have bouts of self-doubt, loneliness and apprehension about what student life is all about.
Take solace is Marina’s words of wisdom, they are her legacy and gift to you.
Someone sent this to me yesterday and I had to share it with you. This blog has a serious focus on improving your grades, but it also has a philosophy that you need to have fun and a short distraction from time to time has been proven to help you be more creative in your thinking and problem solving.
Enjoy these pearls of wisdom!
Ways the Bible Would Be Different if Written by College Students….
- The last Supper would have been eaten the next morning – cold.
- The Ten Commandments are actually only five, double-spaced and written in a large font.
- New edition every two years in order to limit reselling.
- Forbidden fruit would have been eaten because it wasn’t cafeteria food.
- Paul’s letter to the Romans becomes Paul’s e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Reason Cain killed Abel: They were roommates.
- The place where the end of the world occurs: Finals, not Armageddon.
- Out go the mules, in come the mountain bikes.
- Reason why Moses and followers walked in desert for 40 years: They didn’t want to ask directions and look like freshmen.
- Instead of God creating the world in six days and resting on the seventh, He would have put it off until the night before it was due and then pulled an all-nighter.
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