Intelligence is Imagination, Not Knowledge

  • May 8, 2015 6:19 am

Intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.

~ Albert Einstein

Learning Another Language

  • April 30, 2015 6:46 pm

Recently I accepted a substitute teaching position for a fourth grade class, never imagining that it would be a Chinese immersion class! It was taught by a native Chinese student teacher. I was flabbergasted! The class was taught and the students spoke only in Chinese. They wrote in Chinese. They even chit-chatted with each other in Chinese.

I was impressed with how attentive these fourth-graders were. What a wonderful way to challenge bright students.

Carve Out Time to Write

  • April 23, 2015 3:48 pm

It’s not always easy to find a large block of time to write. Sometimes we must be satisfied with a few minutes here and there.

I have found that there is time during a substitute teacher’s day to get a little writing in–while students are taking a test or are at a specialty class, or during the teacher’s prep period.

Utilizing these little blocks of time works well for some aspects of the writing process, but not all.

I Love to Read

  • April 15, 2015 5:50 pm

Sometimes when I substitute teach, I play a little game with the students. I have them write down three things about themselves that they don’t think anyone in the class knows about them. Then I read the clues and the class tries to guess who the person is.

I did this with a third grade class this week. I was delighted that upon reading the clues for several of the students that they had all written: I love to read.


Enjoying Music from Other Lands

  • April 9, 2015 9:52 am

Music is enjoyed by people on every continent. Here’s a great website that introduces children to music around the world:

Learn about music and songs from other cultures. Discover how to make our own instruments. A fun, creative website to explore.

Music Appreciation for Kids

  • April 2, 2015 5:17 pm

Children seem to naturally love music. Here’s a great website to help youngsters gain a greater appreciation of the great composers from the past and of music in general:

Itching to Write

  • March 26, 2015 4:14 pm

I do a lot of substitute teaching. There just isn’t a lot of time to write right now. The other day I was teaching sixth grade. The read-aloud book as Fablehaven, by Brandon Mull. I had, of course, heard of this novel but had never read it. I had some free time during the school day and picked the book up and was instantly drawn into the story. Not only that, but as I immersed myself in the book, I started salivating with creative juices. I felt myself itching to work on my newest junior fiction book. I can’t wait for spring break when I can hopefully get back to work on the third of my Secret Worlds books.

Painting the World

  • March 20, 2015 8:09 am

I am a Webelo scout leader. We’ve been working on the Artist award, and one of the assignments was to draw or paint something outside. I took the boys outside and talked to them a little about plein air art. We talked about how to measure relationships in distance using a pencil. I told them that when you are out in nature, you look around you and you want to paint or draw everything. You feel overwhelmed. It is important, therefore, to pin down what you want to focus on. Zero in on something.

I was interested in what the boys chose to draw. One drew an intricate drawing of the trailer parked in the driveway next door. The details he added even included the bolts. Another boy drew the telephone pole across the street.

Plein air art is amazing. It brings out individuality in a remarkable way.

Friday Night at the Books

  • March 12, 2015 5:46 pm

When our kids were growing up, one of our family traditions was Friday Night at the Movies. On school nights we didn’t turn on movies (and we never watched TV–rotten reception), so by the time Friday night came we were eager to watch a good show.

I remember one Friday night the power went out. No movies. Bummer. Before any of us got too disappointed, however, we decided to have Friday Night at the Books. We read together by kerosene lamp. It was so cozy and fun.

Happy Birthday to Me

  • March 6, 2015 5:38 am

Today is my birthday. The first thing I did when I woke up was say my morning prayer…which has actually continued throughout the day. It is a prayer of thanks–all thanks, no asking, today. It’s been a good life–not always easy, but good. I’ve been thinking of the specific things for which I am grateful.

I thank my Heavenly Father today for books, for the ability to read. Think about the impact that the ability to read has had in your life! What an amazing miracle.