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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Literacy Launchpad For Parents

I love felt! So cheap, and yet you can create the cutest things with it!

Today My Little Reader and I played with The Very Hungry Caterpillar puppet that I use with my Literacy Launchpad students. He loved it! And it's so easy to make. Just socks, felt, and some paint!

Make one for your own little reader and let the reading fun begin!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Hungry Caterpillars

Better late than never, right?

This week in Literacy Launchpad we read The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Eric Carle). This book is usually a great confidence boost in students, because they are almost always familiar with it already, and so you can praise them a lot for their excellent "reading" as they read along with you.

I brought in a very cute caterpillar sock puppet that we used as I read the story a second time during class. The kids got to feed it all its yummy treats from the book and they LOVED it! They were all giggling and just having the best time. And that makes my little heart so happy.

I didn't get photos of the caterpillar puppet during class. Can I just tell you how tricky it is to get photos during class. It's very tough. And getting decent photos is even tougher! Some days I just want to enjoy myself and not fuss with the photos. This week was one of those times. There was just no way to take photos during our puppet activity without it hindering the fun. I'm going to let my son play with it later next week though, and attempt some kind of photos at that time. So stay tuned. It really is a cute little puppet.

We made beautiful butterflies after being inspired by our story! Check out the photos.

This is one of my favorite lessons by far! I know, I know; I say that all the time...

Monday, May 10, 2010

Change is A Comin'

I'm cutting back posts to once a week, as we get closer and closer to bringing our children home from Ethiopia.

It's a time thing. And it's also that my mind is so consumed with adoption stuff lately that I haven't had much brain power left for my literacy stuff. That will change once we settle into our "new normal."

I love my Literacy Launchpad. And I am sad that I haven't had the time to pour into it like I usually do. But this is what God has called me to for this little season of my life... to focus more on my kids and my family... And to stay sane! I'm doing my best to honor that. Thanks for understanding!

Can't wait to be sharing all kinds of ESL things I'm learning and experimenting with when our Ethiopian kids are home. I'm sure I will be learning all kinds of new literacy things that I'll be eager to share!

Anybody have any good ESL and/or homeschooling resources you can point me toward? This is a whole new world I'm getting ready to enter!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tall, Tall Grass!

What a week it was in Literacy Launchpad this week! The school where I teach had been closed Monday and Tuesday due to flooding. They finally were able to re-open on Wednesday, and boy, were those kids excited to be there! And excited to talk about the flooding! They told me all about it (like it was news to me)! :)

Class was a bit of a challenge, because there were fans and dehumidifiers running all over the school. There were three going in the classroom we were using. But no fear, I can read loudly! So we pulled through. I was just glad to see some things getting back to normal around here!

We read In the Tall, Tall Grass (Denise Fleming). Hearing about tall, tall grass was a welcome distraction to hearing all the tall, tall waters around here.

When I asked the students what kinds of things they have seen in their own grass, I got funny responses. "A strange dog," was what student told me. Hee. Gotta love these kids!

Monday, May 3, 2010


I live in the Nashville area. And if you haven't heard yet, we're sitting under water! We got dumped with about 3 months worth of rain over TWO days! This is the worst flooding it seems anybody has ever heard of in our city's history. Luckily, my family and I (and our house) are dry and safe. We live in one of the suburbs that got off pretty easy in the grand scheme of things.

The rest of Nashville was not so lucky! This is like nothing I have ever witnessed. Many, many landmarks and historical sites are flooded; including the Grand Ole Opry, The Orpyland Hotel (has taken on at least 10 feet of water and rising!), The Schermerhorn Symphony Center, LP Field (where out TN Titans play), and much, much more. Lives and lively hoods have been lost. Families have lost everything when their homes went underwater, the majority of which probably have no flood insurance (This isn't something that comes standard on most home insurance policies unless you live in a "flood plain." Did you know? Might want to check into your own coverage!).

The devastation here is very real. Please keep Nashville in your prayers. We are not getting much coverage on national news. so I'm sharing some video here (and photos at the bottom from my neighborhood) of what we're dealing with. The videos are sad, but the last one has given all of us around here a little giggle in the midst of the heartbreak. Be informed, and then spread the word - Nashville is drowning!

The field that our walking trail winds through was a lake.

For a good chunk of the weekend we were stranded in our neighborhood due to severe flooding at the entrance. This is the only way in and out of our neighborhood. (Again, this was a minor inconvenience compared to what many others in the area have been dealing with.)

Our swingset looked like it might float away at one point.