Guest Post: Tracy Gail Churchman of Ty’s Adventures

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    The History of Ty's Adventures: I started writing from Ty's perspective in 2008 after we learned of Ty's upcoming hear surgery and turned it into a blog in 2010. Ty is my oldest of my three sons and has Down syndrome. Two heart surgeries, a flat line, a pace maker (aka "Machine") and a whole lotta mischief later, I'm still writing about that little stinker. He certainly likes to keep us on our toes. I try really hard to keep the focal point of my writing about Ty on the positive. I have had people ask me HOW do I continue to write so positively, when some days they just aren't? Don't you get frustrated? My answer is simple, I don't live in "La-La Land", I have my down moments when I feel like the world has declared war on me; but I try to stop and make a conscious choice. 1. I can get really down about the current state of things, or 2. I can spin it in a funny way, a … [Read more...]

Guest Post by Eric Van Raepenbusch of Happy Birthday Author

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      Celebrating Dr. Seuss Birthday and Read Across America By Eric Van Raepenbusch   Every year for Dr. Seuss’ birthday (March 2) families, classrooms, and libraries across the nation find a way to celebrate the legendary author and his books.  Teachers decorate their schools and create themed lessons, retail stores host special events, and bloggers and Pinterest pinners share their amazing activity ideas to help us enjoy a special day (or week) of reading. I think the excitement is what I like most about Dr. Seuss’ birthday – adults are energized and motivated to read to children. People share their favorite Dr. Seuss quotes and childhood memories reading his books on social media websites.  Children smile because of all the extra effort made by the adults in their lives to incorporate fun into the day.  The Lorax Craft  My family read The Lorax by Dr. Seuss on … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Cyndie Sebourn of Sascyn Publishing

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Apps With Curriculum: Empowering Educators   Apps With Curriculum is about curriculum, not just lesson plans. Curriculum embodies the subjects and planned learnings for an app; it is a summary of lessons. A lesson plan is just a detailed description of instruction for one class.  That is the difference. Apps With Curriculum is empowering educators with a course of study for each app that is cross curricular in subject areas and involves technology. For the public educators who need it, it also provides alignment to Common Core Standards as well as Bloom’s Taxonomy.  21st Century Learning Skills focus on collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity.  Project-Based Learning is the curriculum that best meets this requirement and empowers students to be College and Career ready.  Apps With Curriculum’s Project-Based Learning activities are in the curriculum of … [Read more...]

Guest Post: James Ventrillo, President of Readers Favorite

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  Paul Giamatti's Pool James Ventrillo ReadersFavorite.com Lady in the Water. Have you seen it? It was that movie about a weird mermaid that lived in Paul Giamatti's pool. It was written, directed and even co-starred M. Night Shyamalan. Night based the movie on a fairy tale he made up for his kids. He was hot off the success of his previous movies and presented the script to his distributor, Disney, who footed the bill for his previous movies. Disney took one look at that turd of a script and had Night escorted out of the building. Night ignored Disney's criticisms and did what any multi-millionaire would do--he paid for it himself. The move bombed and Night had to eat Ramen for the next six months. Why am I telling you this story? Because books, just like movies, are supposed to go through a rigorous production process. For movies, dozens of people have to read the script and … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Aileen Pablo

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Teaching Children How To Become Great Writers   What about the walls, furniture, doors, and floors? Think about the stories you have heard of children as toddlers. The stereotypical and humorous tales of them writing everywhere – walls, furniture, doors, and floors – should come to mind. Nothing is safe from the prolific little writers if they have a suitable instrument in hand! Life, especially growing life, is a very messy process. Many parents and teachers often tread that fine line between allowing their children to be imaginative and a little wildly creative, and stopping their creative processes through rigid discipline. Buy some strong cleaning supplies, perhaps some cover-up paint.  How do you become part of the messy process? Children obviously shouldn't be allowed to run amok; however, we as authority figures often put too much emphasis on correctness and not … [Read more...]

Guest Post by Pavel Mamaev of Elfishki

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This week we have a guest post by Pavel Mamaev of Elka Palka Production, LLC., based out of Los Angeles, California.  They have created such apps as Elfishki and The Giant Cake and Elfishki and The Unwelcome Guest.  Mr. Mamaev writes about why he decided to get into the business of developing apps and what other developers should be focusing on when creating new storybook apps.  “Books just can’t beat iPads,” my 7-years-old son Gabriel told me. “Who wants a plain old book when there are iPad games, anyway?” It is really difficult to explain to a 2nd grader why he has to read books. For interesting stories? Here they are, in cartoons on TV. For information? Well, kids of that age are smart enough to reply with “I can use the Internet for that, Dad.”  But how do you explain to a 2nd grader that without regular practice of his reading skills he would never become a full-fledged … [Read more...]

Featured Guest Post by Cyndie Sebourn of Sascyn Publishing

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This week Cyndie Sebourn of Sascyn Publishing wrote a great post about the importance of offering Apps With Curriculum for the educational and home schooling market.  Ms. Sebourn has put together a Reading Activity for both Penelope and Gerry the Giraffe that are aligned with the Common Core Standards.  I am so happy to be working with her and be able to provide  parents with an app that is fun to read and that can be used for educational purposes.  Apps with Curriculum in Education  Common Core State Standards are public education’s "essential" learning requirements for grades K-12.  These essentials are simply the basics that educators must teach. Gifted students will far exceed the "standards."  Special needs students will need modifications to achieve the standards.  Standards are not the evil monsters of education, lurking in each district to destroy achievement and limit … [Read more...]