October 30, 2011


I am all packed up and ready to go!

This week I will be in Orlando at the
National Association for the Education of the Young Child.

Isn't it much easier to say NAEYC???

I will be doing three presentations in the
CTP booth and one called
"The People in our Neighborhood"
for a larger group on Thursday at 11:00.

This is one of my favorite conventions.
I love these teachers.
They are my heroes!

From the Wisdom of Mr. Rogers

When I was very young, most of my childhood heroes wore capes,
flew through the air, or picked up buildings with one arm.  They were spectacular and got a lot of attention.  But as I grew, my heroes changed, so that now I can honestly say that anyone who does anything to help a child is a hero to me.

If you happen to be at the convention
be sure to come by to visit at the CTP booth #516.  

October 26, 2011

I Used to Be Afraid of Scary Bats and Things Like That.....

 At this time of the year many teachers do units on
noctural animals or scary animals like
bats, owls, and spiders.

CTP has a series of books to help you do just that...

Some animals, like this bat, look pretty scary
until you get to know about him.

Click here to view larger image

This delightful reader will help to alleviate children's fears
by providing a fascinating, up-close look at how this creature lives
 and why people do not need to be afraid.
This reader helps children appreciate the
positive contribution animals make to our world. 
It  includes sensible precautions people should
take when interacting with the animal.

Here are some pages from the book.
The magnificent images by Dwight Kuhn,
one of America's leading nature photographers.

Teachin' Cheap (CTP 2335) has some ideas for books
that kids can make to record the information
that they learn from reading the books.

This is a paper bag that is made into a cave.
Information is written on the bat cut-outs
and put in the bag for others to read.

A book doesn't have to have a cover!
A paper bag works great!

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Click here to view larger image

These are two others that are 
part of a 12-book series

For more information on all the books go to  

Watch out for things that go bump in the night!!!

October 21, 2011

Flowers, Food, Fables and Fun in Germany


Some of the most beautiful flowers were in cemeteries.

Almost every house or building had a garden.

Shops had arrangements at the doors.

Gardens were everywhere.

Just to prove that we were there!

I loved the markets in the town squares
filled with fresh vegetables.

Just ride your bicycle to do your shopping.

The breads were to die for....

This is the sign for the pretzel maker.

There is a legend about some monks and
the reason for the shape of the pretzel.
You will have to look it up.

Fables and Legends

Can you guess what this is?

Hundreds of locks.

The legend is....
A couple puts their names on the lock.
Then they attach the lock to a bridge and
throw the key into the river.
This locks their love forever.

Have you heard about Lucky Shamrocks?
Well this is the German take on that idea.
But be careful some are poisonous!

It must be mushroom season in Germany
because red mushroom decorations were everywhere.
The word for it is Gluckspilz! 
Some translate it as "Lucky Devil".

I loved this city of Miltenberg.
The shops were wonderful.

I bought this coffee cup.
I will be twice as lucky.
Shamrock and Mushroom....
I'm a Lucky Devil for sure!


In Prague we came across this tribute to John Lennon.
This was a huge wall where people had written
and painted his songs.

We stood there with several other folks and sang along.
Can you remember the words?

Signs for the buildings are interesting.
They are symbols representing the occupation of the owner.
I can't imagine what this one is.

So you think this is where the stork brings the babies?

Almost every city had a mime or two.

I got a kiss from this one.

This was a hat shop. 
The hat reminded me of the ones worn at the
wedding of William and Kate.
I particularly liked the pancake one in the front.

We discovered an interesting wedding tradition.
Most couples do not get married in a church.
They get married at the city hall then they
parade all over town in their wedding attire.
We saw at least 6 brides on Saturday
in their wedding dresses.

We missed getting a picture of any of the brides but this car was waiting to transport one couple to one of the bridges to do a promenade.

Thanks for looking at my pictures!

I guess it is time for me to get back to work.

October 14, 2011

Things I learned in Prague and Germany

Prague in the Czech Republic, the City of 100 Spires

There must be a church on every street corner in Prague.
They were  beautiful, ornate, and empty. 
It seemed the only people there were tourists.
Most churches in Prague today are used for concerts or tourists attractions.

I did a little research about this.  I found that.....

The Czech Republic has one of the least religious populations anywhere. Historically, the Czech people have been characterised as "tolerant and even indifferent towards religion". From 1991 to 2001, the number of people identifying with no religion increased by 19.1%, or two million people, representing the largest group increase. Adherence to Christianity decreased by over one million persons. ( Wikipedia)

But the churches were certainly attractions!
They have beautiful stained-glass windows
and magnificent altars.
This baby Jesus had quite a wardrobe.
There was a display case filled with his robes.
His clothes matched the liturgical colors.


Nuremberg is most often associated with the Nuremberg trials
which took place after World War II.
You could visit the room where the trials took place.

However, we visited the site where
most of Hitler's Nazi rallies were held.
You would recognize it from the news reels
showing the rise in power of Adolf Hitler.

This is how the site of Nazi party rallies looks today.
Image Detail
The Nazi party rally grounds between 1933-1938
was a huge site with monumental buildings
where the party rallies were held. 
The Hitler Youth and Hitler's military troops
had their parades on these grounds.

The never finished Congress Hall, known as Colosseum of Nuremberg in Germany, was meant to be the focal point for Hitler's rallies.  It was planned to be larger than   Rome's Colosseum. It was never completed because of the end of the war.  Nowadays it houses the documentation center, where you can see many pictures of Nuremberg in the time of Nazis.

Image Detail
A reminder for us all....

Somewhere in Germany along
the Main and Rhine Rivers

Altar Guild lady is getting the church ready for Sunday services.
I did a little research about this, too.

Most of Germany practices Christianity.
The two major denominations in Germany today are the Lutheran Church and Roman Catholicism.
The Lutheran Church is the largest denomination in Germany. (Wikipedia)
That makes sense.  Remember Martin Luther was German.

A castle or a palace???

A castle is built on a hill as a fortress.

A palace is built in a valley as a residence.

Sometimes palaces have cute guards!

Castle or a Palace???
I'm not sure!

We learned why rows in vineyards are planted vertically.
Makes picking the grapes easier....

Sometimes you can even sample wine from the vineyards.
This was at the home of a real live prince.
It must have been a palace!

 The Locks

Navigating the rivers would be impossible
without a system of locks.

On this trip we went through 34 different sets of locks.

A lock makes it possible to move from
one level of water to another.
It reminds me of a big bathtub.

Look at the difference in the water level
on each side of the lock.
Going down a river without a lock
would be "white-water rafting" for sure.

I don't want to scare you but
I took a total of 482 pictures.
I promise I won't post them all!

I had to pay my children to watch them!

But....Next time I want to tell you about
the food, flowers, fables, and fun things
that we saw in Germany.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could both be
 right there right now
enjoying a caffe?