August, 2015

More Dramatic Solutions

Here are some more activities for older students who are struggling with reading: Initial sounds. Do you remember a commercial where two people face each other and the one on the left says the first sound of a word, the one on the right says the rest of the word, and then they all say the entire word? This is a great activity to videotape pairs of students saying vocabulary words (across the curriculum) in Read More →

Thinking About Thinking

Evaluators who observed our Learning About Learning Lab school in the 1970’s repeatedly remarked on our metacognitive approach to education. In 1980 (35 years ago), I wrote my dissertation about metacognition and how it might connect to the play of young children. I was anxious to see how other researchers and practitioners were extending our knowledge of this important concept. For years I looked up metacognition in dictionaries and the indexes to educational materials to Read More →

Dramatic Solutions: Rhymes and Alliteration

Often students who have problems with reading struggle because they did not have enough experiences with phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness is the ability to analyze the stream of oral language into sentences, words, parts of words, and individual sounds (phonemes). Unfortunately, most materials in this area are geared toward very young children. Perhaps because of my unique background, I have been able to make connections between drama, brain research, reading, and the needs of these Read More →


Neuroscientists describe something they call the “action-perception loop.” The bottom line to these studies is that movement is necessary for perception—even vision. Cited is the old (and cruel) study of the two almost identical kittens who spend their early months in a basket. One kitten is on a trolley that carries it around and around to get a 360° view of the environment. The second kitty is also on a trolley, but its basket has Read More →

A Place for Ideas

When I was a young girl, my family did not have a lot of money and I remember how proud they were when they were able to buy a new bedroom suite for my sister and me. I didn’t say anything, but in truth, I hated the furniture—there were lots and lots of drawers with very little room between all the drawers and the bed. If I had been consulted, I would have asked for Read More →