Category Archives: Achievement Gap Blogs

“The Many Mysteries of the Beach” with an Academic Focus to Hit Barnes & Noble this Week

An Academically Enriched Children’s Literature Book

A “mysterious” narrator takes the reader on many mysteries to be learned at the beach.  Learn about the many animals that live on the beach while enhancing sight words and scientific knowledge.  This book is includes a parent and teacher resource section.  For parents or any caregiver, this is a great tool for exploring the teacher within and creating wonderful teaching moments for the learner in your life.

Book is anticipated to be able to review and purchase by Tuesday this coming week.  The Many Mysteries of the Beach can be downloaded right to your PC or MAC.  If you do not have the application required, Barnes and Noble provides free downloads of their apps to your preferred computer system.

The Many Mysteries of the Beach is  a great tool to have on iPod, iPod Phone or iPad to name a few, while driving in the car or waiting in line at the grocery store.  Have you ever been at the doctor’s office when it was busy, with nothing to occupy your little person’s time?  EBooks are a great tool to engage your reader, strengthen phonetics, sight words and academic vocabulary.  These books takes minimal effort, reduces the need for excess bags, and allows the learner many additional opportunities to read.

Reading is the cornerstone of all learning.  Regardless if the book is hand held and made of paper, or if it is stored on an electronic device, the words open the door to the imagination, not the physical object.

If we are to teach and be effective in the 21st century, then we need to know its language and understand its abilities as a learning tool.  However, with this said, at Unlock the Teacher, LLC we still enjoy curling up and reading a physical book too 😉  One does not have to negate the other, but both methods speak to varied learning styles that might make difference for one reader…and for us, that it worth it alone.   As educators, we were forced out of our comfort zone, which can be a good thing. (This causes our dendrites to fire ;-)…hopefully!) We reviewed many statistics on the integration of technology and learning, and decided to try to meet the needs of all learners in publishing our first few book through ePub.

Technology is here and it is not going away, in fact, it is changing by the minute.  Our goal is to embrace the good aspect of incorporating technology into the learning platform.  We will continually look for ways to help make the learning process authentic and valid for both the teacher and the student.

We appreciate all the support expressed thus far, and hope that within the next few weeks many will check out this book and the others we will be publishing in March.  All proceeds from the books launched in March, National Reading Month, will be donated to individual schools and their literacy funds.

Stay tuned for more information as we launch our website next week 😉  provide a calendar of events for the multiple community workshops we will be teaching, readings and so much more.  We have even been asked, if we would be open to hosting book readings via Skype for home school groups, and the answer is…yes, we would love to 😉 If interested in having us stream in, please email us at

We have had many schools contact us in regards to the one extra book we would like to donate.  This book is on the many regions and has a social studies and sight words academic focus.  We might even jump on a plane, and come visit one of these schools in Virginia…more information soon.

Please contact us with any questions, concerns or suggestions.  We like to hear from you.

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,


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Unlock the Teacher LLC and Academically Focused Children’s Books with Coloring Pages to Come

 Unlock the Teacher LLC, will be launching two new academically focused children’s books with coloring pages and parent and teacher resource section.
The goal of The Many Mysteries of the Beach is to introduce and enhance academic science vocabulary and sight words. This book will also have a resource section for parents, pre-K and elementary educators. The paintings for this book were painted by Mary Sharon, my mother, who while living with my husband and me for the last ten years of her life, would sit out on the back deck and paint.  She lost her battle with Colon-Rectal cancer in 2005. Her passion for life, reading and art are evident in her work, as her paintings tell a story all on their own. 

 The academic focus for The Many Mysteries of the Beach are sight words and science facts.

The goal of Phonics Friends’ Adventure with Ms. Beatrice Bee in Search of a Blueberry Bush, is to promote literacy while enhancing the cornerstone of reading, phonics.
The academic focus for this book are phonics, sight words and science facts.
This book will come with a parent/teacher resource section.
These books will be published and available for all young readers within a few days.  The Many Mysteries of the Beach will be available for $3.99 and Phonics Friends’ Adventure with Ms. Beatrice Bee in Search of a Blueberry Bush will be available soon with a great reasonable price. 
Together, through positive collaboration, we all can make a difference for our children, our future.
May we seek knowledge in all things,
Denise 😉
“acte non verbe”

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“Katie’s Farm” to “Katie’s Farm Adventures” Promoting Literacy Campaign

All Proceeds Dedicated to Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Literacy Fund

My mother named this series of paintings, Katie’s Farm.  Her birth name was Catherine and when she visited her grandparent’s farm, they would call her Katie.  However, given that there is a fabulous story already in print titled Katie’s Farm, we will be modifying title. 

We found this to be fitting, given all the amazing adventures Katie enjoys on the farm with her cousins, friends and her favorite horse Sarah.
Thank you again for all the amazing support via email, Facebook and Twitter.  We will keep you posted on details and hope that you will begin the thought process of supporting this literacy campaign, through purchase of books to enhance literacy across the curriculum for all these schools.
Reading is the foundation that supports all learning!
May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,

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Educational Reform…Join the National Conversation

Educational Reform…A Collaborative Effort: via @suite101

Check out some good articles and blogs on educational reform and happenings in the world of education.

Educational resources cited~seek knowledge…

We would like to hear your thoughts, give us a shout!

May we never get tired of learning new things and always be ready to admit that we still have much to learn!


Denise 😉

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Read to A Child Today…Find Out Why it is Important!

Educational websites and apps for parents, caregivers or early childhood teachers…make a difference in the life of a child…READ to them!

It is the responsibility of us all to invest in our future. To prosper as a nation, the literacy gap needs to be looked at as just that, an investment.

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Achievement Gap…Who is Responsible?

Achievement Gap

D. Wickham writes in USA Today on the achievement gap in African-American boys. He is not the first to write on this topic and will not be the last given how we have historically approached this problem. However, the article it is interesting and is sure to get the dendrites firing. In fact, Andrew Wisdom of
Cincinnati was so fired up by the article that he wrote his own reply into the paper. His reply/thoughts on this matter can be read in the opinion section.

Who Is Responsible

The ownership is on us all to seek out why ANY of our children in this great country are falling through the cracks of our education system. As an educator
and mom, I get fired up over discussions on our education system, as I would hope many if not all of you do as well. One thing agreed upon that Wickham
states, is that we all are stakeholders in this. There is great need for more collaboration and training for educators and the primary caregivers in the home

Easier Said Than Done

This may come across as an “easier said than done” type of situation, but education is meant to challenge and to stretch our intellectual abilities. The path is
not meant to be easy…if that was the case, then why bother learning at all! Many do not feel motivated to act on educational issues in this country, let
alone ones that do not specifically relate to themselves and/or family. However, we all need to invest our time and energy into problem solving
solutions that will address our educational system on a systemic level in order to insure that not only will our young African-American males learn and grow to
be productive members of society, but all of our children as a whole. Whatever your race, political or religious inclination, they are, all of our children
and they are our future!

Read and Stay Informed

Fellow students and I had a plethora of discussions on this topic since our teaching time in an urban classroom. Also during our UDM days, under Dr. Letscher’s tutelage, we read a number of books in this area of concern. Dr. Ruby Payne is just one of the many authors we read and found inspirational on this topic. Write in and share your thoughts, reading material suggestions or websites to visit, so we can all collaborate and raise our nation’s level of education to a
competitive status in our global society.

Together we can make a difference!

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,


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