A Positive Attitude = Positive Outcomes

The lens in which we CHOOSE to look through is powerful in predicting the outcomes of our efforts! See the goodūüėĄ
If we focus on the bad or expect the worse, that is usually what we receive. We all have a journey to travel and a purpose for our path…a positive outlook can take an ordinary situation and truly make it extraordinary! If your path is leading to a dead end, make a u-turn and find or make a new road. The goal of this limited time we have on this planet should be to maximize our potential for the greater good of us all. See the good.ūüėĄ

 May we continue to seek knowledge in all things-



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Never Underestimate the Power of Believing in a Child

As educators, we have been blessed with an awesome responsibility to educate the whole child to become productive citizens and leaders of tomorrow.

As an administrator, one of the blessings of my job is to help my faculty and staff be the best they can be in the lives of those placed in their care.

Simple reminders:

*to greet students at the door and actually “see” them each day

*to remember that as an educator, we are the rational adult called to model behaviors for our students…forgiveness, flexibility, humor, compassion etc.

*it is okay for students to know that mistakes have been made or something is not “known” …demonstrate how to build the muscle of “recovery” and “collaboration”

Never underestimate the power we have in lifting up our students to new heights…if you BELIEVE they will ACHIEVE!


May we continue to seek knowledge in all things~



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Grants, Contests and Educational Resources -FREE for the Classroom or School

The Big List of Educational Grants and Resources

By Edutopia


As we are always looking for resources to enhance our classroom and school programs, Edutopia’s website has a great list of grants, contest, awards and free tool kits. I have seen and worked with and among many schools teams that organize a monthly “grant writing” team. This monthly meeting can be fun, focused and can last 1-2 hours with the benefit of drafting and submitting a grant or entering a contest for your school.

Sometimes all it takes is a little out-of-the-box thinking and effort. As educators, the desire should already be there to do what is best for those children placed in our care. Have some fun and enter some contests and submit a grant or two and be amazed at the generosity that is out there waiting to be used for the betterment of your students, our future!

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,



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The Importance of Creating Opportunities for Students-Dare to Allow them to Fail to Learn

As educators as in the role of parent, it is important for us to create opportunities for our children to risk (and sometimes fail) in a safe environment. It is in these opportunities where amazing learning moments occur!

Great article on this topic:


“Creating Space for Risk”

May we continue to seek knowledge-

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Summer…A Good Time to Make Family Memories

Summer...a nice time to make family memories Thoughts to ponder…

Sometimes as parents we try to make sure our children’s summer “does not go to waste” and we over schedule lessons and events.

Taking time to pause, laugh and make good family memories over the summer are essential to laying a strong foundation for the upcoming school year.

While children are in school we want them to love learning and not feel they need a break from it…

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Recommended Math and ELA Apps to Enhance Summer Learning- PreK-8

Happy summer everyone!

Regardless if you are a teacher or parent, job well done this school year…thank you for all your efforts!

Educating our children can be a thankless job at times and it is important that those of us who play a role in the lives of children to take time to say, “thank you.” An attitude of gratitude goes a long way. It is important to recognize all the effort made by parents who juggle the many tasks placed in the ever over-scheduled schedules of daily living and for those teachers who “choose” to work in the classroom to make a difference.

Positive collaboration between parent and teacher is the essential key to establishing a sound academic foundation and developing a love of learning in our children. Having gratitude for one another and our given roles is always a good place to start to build this collaborative relationship.

Below is a list of recommended apps from an amazing Educational Resource Team, enjoy!

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things~


The following is a list of apps recommended by St. Regis Educare Team to support and reinforce classroom curriculum.

Language Arts

Name of App Description Grade Level
Bob Books Activities that correlate with Bob Books series Emergent readers
Sight Words Practice sight words by playing fun games; two levels Early Elementary
Sight Word BINGO Click on words as they are read aloud; try for a BINGO Early Elementary
Phonics Tic-Tac-Toe Answer phonics questions and win your square; get three in a row   for tic-tac-toe Early Elementary
First Grade PhonicsSecond Grade Phonics Practice phonics skills by reading, spelling, matching and   sorting words Early Elementary
Scarecrow Word Puzzles Various word puzzles Early Elementary
ICanWrite 2 Arranging words to make sentences Early Elementary
Mini Word Game for making words Elementary
Reading Comprehension Practice Read short passages and answer comprehension questions Elementary
VocabularySpellingCity, Spelling Tutor, or Spelling Star Vocabulary and spelling activitiesUse lists provided or your own Elementary
Tools4Students Graphic organizers galoreFor writing, note-taking, comprehension, etc. Upper ElementaryAcademy
ReadNRespond Questions that can be used with any work of literature;   correlated to Bloom’s Taxonomy Upper ElementaryAcademy
Zombie Grammar Force Parts of Speech Game Upper ElementaryAcademy
Verb Mayhem or Adjective Mayem Fun game to practice identifying adjectives and verbs Upper ElementaryAcademy


Name of App Description Skill Addressed
MathEdge; Math Drills; or Fast Facts Timed calculationsAdd, subtract, multiply, divide Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division
Math Splash or Penguin Math Games for practicing basic operations Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division
Math Slide Multiplication and Division Game for two to four players Multiplication and Division
Monkey Drills or Division Wiz Practice division Division
Bills and Coins Count money, make change Money
Tell Time Game or Learn Time Practice telling time Time
Pizza 1 or Fraction Monkey Fractions games Fractions
Equivalent Fractions Equivalent fraction activities Fractions
Fractions Practice adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing fractions Fractions

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Educators are Called to a Higher Standard-Negativity Should be the Exception NOT the Norm

Since my first week of working within the world of education many years ago, I have thought it a dichotomy that so many “official” teacher sites, blogs, news articles etc. written by educators or reporting for an educator or educational organization, were often negative in context.
Education in its nature should be positive as teachers affect the lives of so many and so many who will affect OUR future.

A few weeks ago I was having a very interesting conversation with a group of parents who asked me my thoughts on teachers or educational organizations who make negative “public” comments in social media. Comments that speak to summer vacations, too much work with little pay, students who cannot behave in class, teachers now have to be the parent etc. When this group asked my opinion, I had to pause, calm my spirit and regroup because I wanted to make sure that my words did justice to my profession and the many amazing teachers I have had a privilege to teach next to or lead. I also wanted to ensure that my view on teachers having a “choice” to choose education as a vocation versus a career came across clearly.

In any profession, there are those who have not been able to train their eyes to see the good and may find it easier to complain versus enter into solution oriented dialogue. However, the difference with education, is that we as a society should hold those who teach our children, young leaders of tomorrow, to a higher standard. If a teacher is prone to complaining, how does that natural instinct play out in a classroom? Does it affect his/her teaching effectiveness? I would think it does.

As an educator and now an administrator, I expect that my parents and quite frankly my team hold me to standard where they can expect me to choose to be positive, to lead with high expectations, and to see the good in them and in each child placed in my care. As educators, we do not have the luxury of going to work in a closed environment. On the contrary, we are observed by all we encounter…peers, parents, and students. Many watch daily to see how we will handle the difficult challenges we face in education, in the classroom, the teachers’ lounge or the carline. When we allow all these outside forces to affect our work performance, more than just a simple task gets interrupted, we can alter the life of a child.

The role of an educator is essential to creating a better tomorrow. The teacher plants the seeds that will one day grow to help cure cancer, help end hunger and help eradicate hate in our world.

Education is a vocation because those who choose to teach, should only do so because they feel a calling to make a difference in the lives of others. Being an educator is not for the weak at heart or the negative nelly. Being an educator means being able to see the good even when others can’t. If discerning if education might be the right path as your future career, I would encourage a self-inventory. If it is easier to be drawn into the negative, to complain versus create and solve problems, education is not the vocation for you!

May we all continue to see knowledge in all things…


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Grammar Review Websites/Apps

As I review and read parent and teacher blogs, it is not uncommon to read that there is a need for  more grammar lessons or lessons enhanced with grammar concept review.

I hope the sites below will prove helpful.

Recommended Grammar Websites

These websites cover basic information about parts of speech, word usage, sentence structure, and writing mechanics. They include online lessons and tutorials that you can take at your own pace, as well as quizzes and assessments you can use to determine when you have mastered the material.

Grammar-Monster.com   http://www.grammar-monster.com/

  • Lessons
  • Practice Exercises
  • Quizzes

Sophia.org tutorials          http://www.sophia.org/search?utf8=%E2%9C%93&q=grammar&qs=1

  • Tutorials
  • Assessments

Grammar Blast                  http://www.eduplace.com/kids/hme/k_5/grammar/

  • Answer grammar questions to unlock games

 These great sites have been researched and recommended by :

Kathy Saporito, MA in Reading and Catholic School K-8 Resource Teacher




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Happy New Year! May You Find Opportunities to Share the Good

Happy New Year Everyone!

This has been a great year but quite busy with many projects. I hope to publish a couple blog articles a month for 2015. Thank you to everyone for the wonderful comments and support; taking a position as an elementary principal has taken a lot more time than anticipated away from writing.  However, I now have a dynamic team of fifty-two amazing individuals and I am finding more and more time to squeeze in writing.

As I reflect on 2014 and look at what blogs touched  the most readers, it is those written to motivate and inspire. 100 Words to Praise Students has received over 25,000 views. This tells me that we are  seeking ways to find and share the good in our classrooms and with those students or people placed on our path during this journey in life.

As as we embark upon a New Year, may you have the courage to be the difference in the lives of many!

Thank you all for all you do and for allowing me to do what I love…

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things-


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A New Twitter Hash Tag #CalmYourSpirit to Support New Writing Project by Denise Ball

Hello Everyone,

In support of a new book I am writing, I have created a new Twitter hash tag #CalmYourSpirit
I have used this saying for years, as many of you know, with family, friends, students and peers. My definition of this statement is: “When that “out of control” or lost feeling begins to creep up, take a moment to pause, take a deep breath and calm your spirit! This allows one, regardless of age to regain focus and purpose for the task at hand.”

Please join the conversation on Twitter @dballwriter

Blessings to all,

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