The Magic of Maxwell and his Tail by author Maureen Kanefield
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Kids' Blog

Too Much Tech

Is there too much tech being used by children these days? Parents and educators are asking that question all the time.

Edutopia addressed the issue in their latest publication. In my opinion, children need to have contact both visually and verbally with students and adults. Building communication with others comes with understanding and empathy .  Children need to learn how to be emotionally appropriate. This comes from dirrect experience. Children who are naturally reclusive or shy are not empowered by sitting in front of a computer screen all day.

Parents and teachers need to monitor and guide. Group work in the classroom helps to bridge the gap between too much tech and interaction.

Fun with Maxwell

Hey Maxwell fans! Check out this cool new poem! BIG THANKS TO Storywraps and Marilyn Patton! Look, there’s Maxwell by his house. Who’s Maxwell? Why he’s a little mouse. What’s the problem? What is wrong? Oh my gosh….his tail’s too long!!! His friends at school all laugh and sneer, They tease and gawk when Maxwell’s near. Poor Max is feeling so forlorn, Rejected, sad … his heart is torn. Then one day a beam of light Shines down on Max and sets things right. His tail is magic, his tail’s unique, Max discovers he’s NOT a freak! Look out Max you tail’s a wonder, Creating magic without a blunder. Extraordinary Maxwell smart, His awesome tail’s a work of art! Maxwell’s tail is quite a sight, The things it does brings him delight. Max’s the envy of his school, His friends now think that Max is cool.

Writing Strategies

Hello Teachers and Parents, I hope everyone had a safe and Happy Halloween. Often, we see students who are voracious readers— well above their grade level in comprehension and understanding. However, some of those same readers might not be great writers. Why? These higher functioning children don’t always focus on the way a book was written as much as what was written. Some tips for increasing writing: 1. Student talks, teacher writes 2. Students record themselves 3. Cooperative group critiques 4. Audio Transcribe Having a thesaurus available at all times is a must for children. Spend some time playing a game with vocabulary— have you and the kids think of as many similar words you can starting with a base word. For instance, gone–depart. leave, astray, absent,deceased, disappeared, done, dissolved, and on and on. This helps with writing skills, as well. Then look in a thesaurus to see what you missed.

Sing Along Picture Books

Who’s a fan of sing-along picture books!? Maxwell sure is! Here’s a bunch of fun, sing-along picture books for your enjoyment this Autumn. Show this page to Mommy and Daddy and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to get one! List compliments of Barefoot Books … http://store.barefootbooks.com/catalogsearch/advanced/result/?by_subject=157

Stunning Book Illustrations!!

Hello Maxwell Fans!

It’s a new week and with a new week comes a new lesson! Today’s lesson: Never judge a book by its cover! Why? Because there may be some beautiful illustrations lurking on the inside as well!! Remember, the inside is just as beautiful as the outside!

Check out 25 stunning books illustrations: http://www.creativebloq.com/illustration/top-book-illustrations-11121235

Best Children’s Books

Hey Friends!

Happy Monday everyone! Monday’s are tough … the weekend fun has passed and now we have to get back to it! Reading books like the Magic of Maxwell and His Tail can make the week fun and educational while mixing in the occasional laugh. There are plenty of great picture books out there this Fall. Lot’s of stories to be told and amazing pictures to be seen. Check out some of Maxwell’s friends at the following website:

http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/article/teachers-picks-top-25-picture-books

Don’t forget … read, laugh, and have fun!

Rhyming with Maxwell!

Hey Maxwell fans! Sing with me … Look, there’s Maxwell by his house. Who’s Maxwell? Why he’s a little mouse. What’s the problem? What is wrong? Oh my gosh….his tail’s too long!!! His friends at school all laugh and sneer, They tease and gawk when Maxwell’s near. Poor Max is feeling so forlorn, Rejected, sad … his heart is torn. Then one day a beam of light Shines down on Max and sets things right. His tail is magic, his tail’s unique, Max discovers he’s NOT a freak! Look out Max you tail’s a wonder, Creating magic without a blunder. Extraordinary Maxwell smart, His awesome tail’s a work of art! Maxwell’s tail is quite a sight, The things it does brings him delight. Max’s the envy of his school, His friends now think that Max is cool. BIG THANKS TO STORYWRAPS AND MARILYN PANTON!

I was born in Chicago

image-babyphotoI was born in Chicago on a sweltering summer day. Growing up in a suburb outside of Chicago, I was always fascinated with the opportunities that life presented me. I wanted to feel that each day would bring with it something new to learn, something else to discover and love, and new hopes for exploring the world’s phenomena. As early as I can remember, education and physical fitness were stressed in our home. My parents encouraged me, my sister, and my brother to stay focused in school and get involved with individual and group sports. I learned the disciplines of self-motivation and teamwork.

As a small child, I especially enjoyed our weekend trips to Union Pier, Michigan. I would take our dog, Taffy, in the waters of Lake Michigan and swim for hours. poodleTaffy would always tire before I did. The pampered poodle would stretch out on the sun-soaked sand and fall asleep. Not me. After several attempts, my mom and dad had to pressure me with an impending “day out of the water” to pry me away from the lake.

On a more personal note, I have always loved being active. I believe in a healthy lifestyle. On any given day, you might see me jogging a few miles, swimming, biking, and when the Chicago weather allows, playing golf. I am passionate about learning and look for different avenues to increase my awareness. Living in Chicago, I have the opportunity to take advantage of the culture. Chicago has great theater. The museums are sensational. And I can’t leave out watching the celebrated Chicago Bears, Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs, and White Sox. My downtime is with a good book or seeing a great movie.