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Latest Posts

Lifestyle

Reading for Pleasure

More and more often I hear, “My son is a good reader, but he doesn’t enjoy reading,” or “I can’t get her to pick up a book and read for pleasure.” If reading is a struggle, students are less likely to willingly read. But what are some things we can do to foster a love of reading? The following are for young readers – get an early start so that reading becomes a habit.
Lifestyle

Lazy Students? Or Lacking Skills?

Many times parents tell me that their student could do the work if he really wanted to. “He’s just lazy,” they tell me. “She just doesn’t care.” I have trouble with the concept, however. Does it make sense that a student would deliberately take on the wrath of parents and teachers just because he doesn’t feel like doing his school work? Is it logical to believe that she prefers bad grades, lost privileges, no extra-curricular participation just because she doesn’t care? I think about things I don’t like to do: ...
Lifestyle

"Smart" is a Relative Term

Every day one of my students will proudly tell me how smart he is. He’s heard this from his parents for years. I look at his grades. I listen to what other teachers say about his attitude and his behavior. I watch year after year when he doesn’t pass his End of Course or his High School Proficiency Exam. I can’t help wondering why he thinks he’s so smart. Now I’ve been around kids long enough to know that they seldom make connections between what is real and what isn’t…..especially ...
Lifestyle

Sometimes They Get It on Their Own

My friend Sarah takes care of Lexi, my wonderful but bratty dog, on Fridays when I stay in Entiat to supervise concessions at the home football games. She picks up Lexi from day care and then takes her to the river walk where they enjoy the fall weather, the birds, the outdoors, and the other dogs. Sarah has known Lexi since I brought her home from the Humane Society, so she has watched her grow from puppyhood ‘til now.
Lifestyle

Consistency: the Key to Success

You were recently introduced to my dog, Lexi, a border collie/golden retriever I adopted from the Humane Society. She has the beautiful face of the retriever and the intelligent eyes of the border collie. She is smart, active, funny, and a tad bratty. Lexi and I have nearly completed a year together, and I am amazed at the similarities between working with her and working with children. She easily manipulated me with her sweet face and wonderful sense of humor. She sat on first command without exception. She behaved quietly ...
Lifestyle

Getting Rid of Distractions

My dog, Lexi, is part border collie and part golden retriever. When I adopted her from the Humane Society, she was one year old. I had hoped for the collie brains and the retriever disposition, but, of course, got the opposite, so I decided training was a must!
Community Connections | Lifestyle

Nancy Coolidge | Getting a Good Start in School

We’ve finished those exciting first few days. Our kids have all the classroom rules and routines under their belts. Now it’s time to get serious about the subject matter – the meat and potatoes of their classes. Here are some more things you can do to get the year off to a good start. I will elaborate on many of them in the next couple of weeks
Lifestyle

Common Core Standards -- What exactly are they?

            I was on the treadmill at the YMCA and the gentleman next to me was on his phone. Apparently, he uses his time on the treadmill staying in touch with family and friends. Of course, I could hear his half of the conversation (another topic for another time).
Lifestyle

Family Habits

This time of year is all about rest, recreation, recovery – spending time with our families and reconnecting. It is also a time of resolution. We look forward to the new school year as a fresh start, an opportunity. I am suggesting we commit to carrying our summer family time into the school year. We are all incredibly busy. Parents are often working two jobs and kids are participating in summer activities, in addition to work and vacations. We often don’t eat meals together, and we sometimes don’t see each ...
Lifestyle

Keeping Routines During the Summer

Summer usually means a respite from the regimented demands of the school year. No more nightly homework, endless projects, after-school activities, or lunches to pack. However, summer brings its own new responsibilities: cams, sports, swim lessons, and a lot of “free time” – often unsupervised – for our kids.