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Showing posts from May, 2010

Grad School From Home

I just started my first graduate class in over three years earlier this week.  I can not begin to tell you how nice it is to work on a class completely online.  I used to dread driving down to Wayne State once a week for three hours when I first started working on my second Masters degree.  I am back in school now because the state forces educators to go back every six years to keep our certificates up to date.  Now, almost every class in the Library Science Program is available totally online.  I just spent the last hour having an online chat with my group regarding our group project due later in June.  In the past, I would have had to spend time away from my family going to class or meeting at a library to discuss the project.  Tonight my largest problem was sliding away to re-fill my glass of Rock and Rye without the group realizing I was gone. Now do not get me wrong.  An online class does involved a lot more discipline.  But I love the ability to hop online at 3:00 a.m. to finis

Reading, This is Fun

This past week, my oldest daughter started taking Accelerated Reader tests at her school.  She is in kindergarten and quite young for her grade, but she loves to read (big surprise there, daughter of a librarian and all).  What I thought about as I watched her read over a new book each day was what happens to this enthusiasm about reading as children grow older?  My daughter could not wait for a new book to bring home each day.  She loved sitting down with me to prove she could both read and understand the book.  This is the case with so many elementary aged children.  They love going to the library to pick new books, they love story time.  Meanwhile at the high school, I have a handful of students that pop in and ask about new books or make recommendations for additions to our library.  Most of the other requests I have are "what is your shortest book?" or a statements such as "I hate reading."  When do things change?  What happened to those excited elementary stud

The News Herald Track and Field Championship

I know this blog is supposed to focus on literacy and technology but today I decide to take a little sidetrack.  That is just the way my mind works actually.  Today I would like to write about The News Herald Track and Field Championship meet at Grosse Ile High School.  Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of this fine event.  I guess this is related in a way, since I am blogging for The News Herald. Yesterday marked my 13th News Herald meet as the Boys' head Track and Field Coach at Carlson High School.  For the past 13 years I have spent the second or third Saturday in May at this wonderful event.  I still remember walking into the stadium as a 23 year old rookie coach, knowing little to nothing about track and field.  I was scared to death as I walked into the pre-meet coaches meeting.  However the late, great Mr. Steve Sims, the girls' track and field coach at Grosse Ile at that time soon put my fears to rest.  He welcomed and accepted me as an equal immediately.  This from

That Is One Way to NOT Improve Literacy

Thanks to various professional association memberships, I receive a number of emails each day pertaining to the world of libraries and literacy.  I know, sounds like exciting stuff right?  Well most days I tend to just hit the delete button quite quickly, but today something really caught my eye.  It appears that an upset mother was not happy with some of the books her daughter brought home from the local public library.  She contacted the library, and asked for "warning labels" to be placed on the certain books.  When the library rejected her request the concerned parent decided to, well you can read the story for yourself here.   Ms. Harden seems to think she can make decisions not only for her children, but for all of the readers in this Orlando suburb.  For me, this is simply theft; she took something that does not belong to her, and will not return the item.  I think the library has been as cooperative as one would expect.  They decided to pull the materials from the y

My Favorite Books on "The Big Screen"

A few months ago we read Dear John for the Carlson High School Book of the Month Club.  We discussed the novel the same month the film version was released and wow, so many of our readers were disappointed with the film.  This sent me thinking about my favorite books that have made their way onto the big screen.  So many films start off as plays and novels.  Of course it is much easier to take a novel, and change it into a screenplay for a film than to create a screenplay from scratch.  It is even easier to take a play and put it onto the big screen.  I will share my top five reads that have found their way onto the big screen for you.  Note I am ranking the literary work, not the film (films usually do great books little, to no justice).     Along Came a Spider , by James Patterson....I love the Alex Cross novels.  They are great summer reads. Very quick chapters with an exciting story line.  I have read many of the "Cross" works, but it has been a few years since my last

My Read for the Month, May 2010

So, I figure to start each month I will share whatever book I am currently reading.  I started reading Darker Than Night by Tom Henderson about a week ago.  Henderson , a former writer for the Detroit Free Press, covers the mysterious disappearance of two suburban Detroit hunters in 1985.  The case took 18 years to solve, with clues and information pouring in from all over the country.  I am about half way through the book and it is riveting.  I should have no problem finishing this book before the end of the month (even with a graduate class starting up at Wayne State shortly). I usually read about one "True Crime" novel per year.  Now, I do not read them because I am a big fan of serial killers or criminals in general.  Well written true crime works are usually better than fiction.  My interest is always with the detective work that goes along with the story.  Most of the time, the reader will know who committed the crime before they start the book.  True crime novels ar