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We Have Much to be Thankful For…As We Celebrate Our Three Year Anniversary, We Take A Look At Some Of The People We Have Met, Who Also Strive To Make A Difference

As we celebrate our third year as a company, we have much to be thankful for.

Over the past three years, we have written a handful of academic eBooks that continue to sell…thank you to our readers 🙂

We have been blessed to have met wonderful people and companies via Twitter and Facebook and this blog, that have an amazing impact on education like Ocean House Media, @Pragmaticmom , @MovingSmartNow, and Writers Digest to just name a few.

Fortunately, we have been asked to provide professional development numerous times throughout the school year these last three years and we have almost reached 35,000 views on this blog and our website receives thousands of hits per week…thank you!

More recently, we have struck up some good dialogue with people in the publishing industry who are giving us good advice and recommending agents for us to seek out for our Unlock the Teacher series we have been collaborating on with Dr. Lick, M.D and Dr. Letscher, Ph.D.  We are quite grateful for all the advice and recommendations…thank you!

As we prepare for this Thanksgiving holiday, we want to say we are THANKFUL to each and everyone one of you, who allow us to do what we love and encourage us to do more.

May your holiday be blessed!

Denise and the rest of the Unlock the Teacher LLC team

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Unlock the Teacher LLC Would Like to Wish Everyone a Joy-Filled Holiday Weekend

Unlock the Teacher LLC Trademarked Logo

Given that we are less than a year old as a company, we have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.  We are working with a handful of schools in the area of aligning the Common Core State Standards into school’s curriculum for K-8 and curriculum mapping.  Our ePublishing Workshops for students/teachers and adults has been quite successful and we are thrilled to have helped many students begin to build a college fund, and to assist many take their first step towards their dream of writing.

We are immensely thankful for the outpouring of support we have received via social media (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) from educators and writers from all over the world; your words of encouragement on a weekly basis, puts wind beneath our wings and allows us to sail further into our dreams…thank you is just not adequate to express our gratitude.  As we begin to send out our proposal for our 1st book in the Unlock the Teacher series to agents and publishers, it is your kind words that fuel our fire and helps remind us that we are on the right track.

We are thankful to Changez Salon for our relationship we have built-in representing them in the world of social media, website development and management and the lessons that we learn by watching them give back SO much to the community…from helping cancer patients through the loss of hair process, raising funds for various charities like Gilda’s Club and Breast Cancer Awareness, sponsoring the arts in the community via Eisenhower Dance Ensemble and their current promotion, “Hair that Cares” where they are collecting can foods for those in need this winter. They are definitely beacons of light to many!

To all the parents and teachers who have purchased our academic eBooks at Barnes and Noble.com, we thank you for ALL your support!

We believe that if we continue to try to make a difference, that we will be fruitful for our efforts.  Thank you for showing us that good does beget good!

Lastly, we are trying for 10,000 views of our blog before our one year anniversary as an educational company.  We are almost there, thank you for sharing what we do and helping us continue to go into schools, work with students, parents and teachers and for helping us continue to make a difference in the life of our children, our future!

Happy Thanksgiving!

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,

Denise and the entire Unlock the Teacher Team

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Filed under Blogs that Inspire Us, Business We Support, Sponsor or Develop Curriculum For, Sharing the Good, Who We Are...

6th Grade Teacher Makes Science Fun with Cell Process Cartoons

Who said science wasn’t fun?
While in a school today (St. Mary School Royal Oak, Michigan), I stopped to look at these fabulous displays of creativity.  Not only was this hallway display colorful and creative, it was educational and funny!
 
 A simple, yet effective and creative way to teach the process of a cell.Students after reviewing lesson with their teacher Mrs. Lapenta, they were given the rubric for a “Cell Process Cycle Cartoon”.  Students had to incorporate the vocabulary given and create a cartoon strip displaying the process reviewed in class. Thinking “Outside of the Box” can take learning to new and exciting places for you and your students.
 
We would love to share your classroom Best Practices with our readers. Please email me at denise@unlocktheteacherllc.com a brief synopsis of lesson and a jpg or two.  It is in this collaborative process, that we all grow as educators…as parents…as a society!  Good ideas are meant to be shared.  We try to share them as often as we can!
 

"Outside of the Box" teaching is good for all stakeholders in the learning process!

 

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,
Denise
 
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Filed under Best Practices from Awesome Educators, Science, Sharing the Good

4th and 5th Grade Teachers Share Great Trade Books to Utilize when Teaching Personal Narrrative Writing

Mrs. Snyder and Mrs. McNish are two teachers that are sharing this wonderful list of trade books to be utilized at home or in the classroom when teaching personal narrative writing.

"Apple Picking Time" by Michele B Slawson

This is a wonderful story about a little girl named Anna, who is determined this year to fill her apple apron.  It is sure to delight all ages.

"Lost and Found" by Le Marche

This wonderful book includes three short stories that incorporate a dog. It is full of emotion and descriptive details.

"Painting in the Wind" by Patricia and Emily MacLachlan and Illustrated by Katy Schneider

This is a beautiful book in both words and pictures.  The paintings allow the reader to see the story come alive.

"The Trouble with Wishes" by Stanley

This is a weird but funny story sure to make your class laugh!  However, it is a story that comes with a real message that we should be careful with what we wish for, that sometimes what we need most is right in front of us.

"Up" by LaMarche

I loved reading this story to a group of 4th graders and to my daughter who is in 2nd grade.  This is a beautiful story about a boy named Daniele, called Mouse.  Imagination and determination is delicately woven throughout this tale and is a pleasure to read.

In all of these books, students while listening, can identify emotions, small details, dialogue and descriptions as the words are creatively placed together to tell wonderful stories that have something to teach or remind us all.

Thank you to Mrs. Snyder and Mrs. McNish at St. Mary’s School in Royal Oak, Michigan for sharing these great books with us.

We encourage any and all to please share ideas, suggestions, lessons and recommendations with us here at our Unlock the Teacher blog.  It is in the collaborative process, that we will succeed in preparing a better tomorrow for our children of today.

Have a super week!

Denise

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Anti-Bullying Workshops for Grades 1-12: “Words Hurt”, “Pick-up vs. Put-Down”, “You Can Make a Difference” and “Getting the Big Picture”

Anti-Bullying Workshops provided by Unlock the Teacher LLC

Anti-Bullying Workshops
These workshops ultimately benefit our children, our future and theirs.
We come into schools, summer camps, homeschooling groups,
youth groups and church groups to teach and inspire.

References and Background Check
Information
can be provided upon request.
Please visit our website for testimonials and more information.

Anti-Bullying “Words Hurt” Workshop Session I (Grades K-3)
This workshop is centered on identifying and discovering that  we all have gifts and talents. As a group, we discuss positive and negative words, and how when used, they can make us feel inside.  As a group, students create a “Pick-Up-Don’t Put Down” chart. (e.g.  I am strong because I am kind.”)
Session Length:         45-60 Minutes
Price:                          $400.00 per 200 Students

Anti-Bullying “You Can Make a Difference” Workshop Session II (Grades 4-6)
This is a great workshop for character building. Studies show this is the age to target to catch and dissolve bullying behavior.  Dialogue
centers on identifying appropriate and inappropriate behavior associated with bullying.  Presentation covers how to communicate when involved in or witnessing this behavior. Problem solving tips are given to help with future anti-bullying success. Students create as a group the “Don’t Be a Bully Three B’s Please” chart. (e.g. 1. Don’t be a bully “B”ecause…it makes you feel bad inside!) If time permits, students are encouraged to participate in impromptu skits and role-play scenarios. (Students usually love this portion.)
Session Length:          60-90 Minutes
Price:                          $500.00 per 200 students
Anti-Bullying “Words, Action, Character” Workshop Session III (Grades 7 & 8)
This workshop begins with a review of “You Can Make a Difference” workshop, spending the first 15-20 minutes discussing how we all can
contribute and help each other for the greater good.  In this workshop, examples are given via video clips of 11-13 year olds who have been victims of bullying, its effects and strategies used to overcome it.  Students work together as a group to create a slogan for their school environment’s
“Words, Action, Character”.  Students will identify words that empower the slogan created and words that destroy its meaning.
Session Length:          60-90 Minutes
Price:                          $500.00 per 200 students
Anti-Bullying “Getting the Big Picture” Workshop Session IV (Grades 9-12)
This workshop is designed to educate students on the legal ramifications involved with the improper use of social media tools.
i.e. Twitter, Facebook, AIM, IM, Blogs, MySpace, etc.  Examples are provided to identify improper use and the results and consequences of such action.
Leadership is highlighted in this session along with character attributes.  An overview is given along with examples of how the actions of today are judged by future colleges and employers.  (Given size of school, this session can be divided into two groups: grades 9 & 10 and 11 & 12)
Session Length:          60-90 Minutes
Price:                         $500.00 per 200 students
We work in all schools and are happy to help work out funding or help find a funding source for you.
For additional information, please visit our website at www.unlocktheteacher.com or email us at teachme@unlocktheteacherllc.com
When we all come together for the greater good of our children, our future…there is nothing we cannot conquer!
May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,
Denise

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Filed under Anti-Bullying Workshops, Blogs that Inspire Us, Sharing the Good, Student Workshops

As a Curriculum Developer, This is my Impression of the Common Core State Standards Initiative by Denise Ball

Together we can make a difference!

As one who gets extremely excited about curriculum, I thought I would share some words of wisdom on education that I found from the Common Core State Standards Website. I understand after many years in the education system, how easy it can be for educators to get discouraged when a “new” trend or a “new” must follow philosophy comes along…that all must follow under the auspices of what is best for our children. However, after working with a few educational staffs this past school year on curriculum
alignment and aligning curriculum to the new CCSS ELA and Math model, I am even more impressed with the initiative and the direction it is pushing towards on behalf of our children.

A funny thing is, I believe the CCSS model is even more complimentary and gracious to us educators than many state standards. As an ELA
teacher, I find the comprehensive breakdown of grammar per grade refreshing…not to mention the recommendations of literary works to enhance lessons. However, the icing on the cake for me was the recommendation of utilizing Shakespeare in the classroom…I used Shakespeare’s plays for years in the classrooms I taught and the students just enjoyed it! In fact, one year
I had a group of seventh grade girls who found joy in practicing writing and speaking in Old English 🙂

With this said, I hope you take a look at the Common Core Standards with an open mind and look at them as a guide…as all curriculum is.
The true mastery is in the teacher and the reflective practices he/she uses to capture the unending teachable moments throughout the school year.

Great quotes taken from the Common Core State Standards Initiative
Benchmarking for Success documents:

“We are living in a world without borders. To meet the realities of the 21st century global economy and maintain America’s competitive edge into the future, we need students who are prepared to compete not only with their American peers, but with students from all across the globe for the jobs of tomorrow.”

“Nations around the world are facing a new education imperative, and many are seizing the historical moment to provide their citizens with better opportunities and stronger economies.”

“Governors recognize that new economic realities mean it no longer matters how one U.S. state compares to another on a national test; what matters is how a state’s students compare to those in countries around the globe. America must seize this moment to ensure that we have workers whose knowledge, skills, and talents are competitive with the best in the world.”

For additional information on Common Core State Standards that all but a few states have adopted visit http://www.corestandards.org/

For information on Unlock the Teacher LLC Common Core State Standards Workshops and/or recommendations from teacher, principles and superintendents, please feel free to visit our website at www.unlocktheteacher.com or email teachme@unlocktheteacherllc.com

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,

Denise 😉

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Filed under Achievement Gap Blogs, Common Core State Standards "Nuts & Bolts", Curriculum Resources, Professional Development Workshops for Educators, Sharing the Good, Teacher and Administrator Workshops

First Graders’ Second eBook “Katie’s Horse Adventure” is Now Available at Barnes and Noble.com~All Proceeds Go Towards Promoting Literacy at Elementary School

"Katie's Horse Adventure" an eBook Written by Kids for Kids

First Graders’ Second eBook Katie’s Horse Adventure is Now Available at Barnes and Noble.com Thank you to everyone who has supported the Katie’s Farm Adventures series.  All Proceeds Go Towards Promoting Literacy at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Elementary School.

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/katies-horse-adventure-olqm-1st-grade-class/1104176954?ean=2940013605886&itm=1&usri=katie%2bs%2bhorse%2badventure

We have been busy working on additional eBooks to donating to elementary schools for the 2011/2012 school year…stay tuned!

If your school would like to have Unlock the Teacher LLC come in and facilitate one of our writing workshop for a class or series of grades, we would be happy to come and share this wonderful writing process that gets children so excited about writing and reading their own work.

Recommendations are available upon request.

I wish everyone a fabulous summer filled with many learning moments~

Denise 😉

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Filed under "Katie's Farm Adventures" eBook Series Donated to Promoting Literacy, Blogs that Inspire Us, March 2011 Promoting Literacy Campaign, Recommended Books to Read, to Learn, to Inspire, Unlock the Teacher eBooks at Barnes and Noble Online

Unlock the Teacher LLC Enters Chase Community Giving Facebook Contest…Please Check Out & Share

Chase Community Giving FB Contest:

How would your organization utilize $500,000 to give back to the community?

Our Response:
Unlock the Teacher LLC would utilize money in urban schools across U.S. by providing Writing ePublishing Workshops for students grs. 6-12. We teach students and their parents how to utilize their gifts and talents to create eBooks to earn and save college money for their future. Please visit Chase Community Giving FB page and “like” our comment, if you like our idea.

Thank you for support,

Denise Ball, Trisha Vaughn and Sue Atwell

The Unlock the Teacher LLC Team

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Filed under Grants and Funding Resources, Hot Topics in Education

Unlock the Teacher LLC’s “Katie’s Farm Adventures” to be Published with Amazon Too

Unlock the Teacher LLC’s “Katie’s Farm Adventures” to be published with Amazon too.  In fact, our team will be going into Our Lady Queen of Martyrs school this Friday to work with the 1st graders, as they will be writing and illustrating the second book in this series.  We are looking forward to it and what a great experience for the little people too.

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Filed under Unlock the Teacher eBooks at Amazon Online, Unlock the Teacher eBooks at Barnes and Noble Online

Unlock the Teacher LLC Wishes Everyone a Happy Easter

May your weekend be blessed!

The Unlock the Teacher LLC team wishes everyone a happy and joy-filled weekend!

This is a wonderful time to regroup and refocus on all that is important to you and your families, your company, your school and all that is around you.  Spring is a time of renewal…may each of us find time for peace and quite. Time to renew that which is exceptional and unique to us so we can truly maximize our potential…for the betterment of our children, our future!

May we continue to seek knowledge in all things,

Denise, Trisha and Sue

The Unlock the Teacher Team

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