Thursday, September 25, 2008

Autism Walk

We were very fortunate to have a rain-free Autsim Walk on Sunday. What a crowd, too! The McLean County Autsim Society was able to raise almost $30,000, which surpassed their goal by almost $10K.

I owe a great deal to my friends who came out and walked with Max and me. Jessie and her family, Karen (the amazing photog) and Maddie... all there in support of the cause. Michelle... there for her child in union with those of us dealing with the special needs of children with communication disorders. Good times.

A big thanks also to those who sponsored team Rent A Tech. You added to that amazing total and helped to make some lives around here a bit easier.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Stranger than fiction

OK, those who know me well know that I am not an avid reader of fiction. I am a non-fiction-aholic. In an effort to expand my horizons, and make sure I regularly see my buds, I have decided to join a book club. Our choices involve books that seem fun, lighthearted... I guess we have made a few weird choices so far, but I have liked them.

We are now reading Anybody Out There? by Marian Keyes. I absolutely love her writing. Lots of sarcasm. You can "hear" the characters (several of whom are Irish) and you can "see" the plot. Alas, as funny as it is, there is a VERY serious part to the plot. One that makes one cry... a lot. That's all I am going to say.

So... I am reading fiction. I hope my non-fiction books don't get jealous.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

We Remember

We remember...
...the firefighters
...the police officers
...the veterans
...the civilians
...the innocent victims
...the sadness
...the horror
...the strength
...the American spirit to overcome
...September 11, 2001

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Time flies

My students and I were looking at the September calendar and writing down important events for September. There was a red, white, and blue ribbon on September 11, and they were asking me why. It hit me like a brick wall. They were two and three years old when 9/11 occurred. What a responsibility I have!

I had one book on my shelves. Unfortunately, it was a Life magazine book. The pictures were incredible and horrifying. Way too much for fourth grade digestion. So, I am on a quest to find or create a way to commemorate 9/11 at this grade level. I truly think, like the attack on Pearl Harbor, it should never be forgotten. However, they do not need to see pictures of people jumping out of the Twin Towers. I know when I looked at those photos, it brought a lot of the emotion of that day back. Each year on or around 9/11, I take time to speak with my classes. I share what I was doing the day it occurred and how scared everyone was. They need to know. They need to remember. They need not be frightened, just vigilant.

But that's an interesting shift in our society as well. When I was 9, I knew what had happened at Pearl Harbor and why December 7 was significant. I did not know all the details, but I was not completely ignorant of it. I see our generation as one that is neglecting oral tradition, letting the mass media "create" history, and raising large amounts of children who are destined to "repeat history." So, off I go to Google!