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The New Normal

So again, I will start with I know this is a horrible time and I hope everyone is well. I hope to spread some smiles this week. For those of you who read my column regularly, I am an old school teacher. I previously had never used Google Classroom until this pandemic. I hate it. I love a nice old “whiteboard” and a marker any day. That was one piece of advancement I enjoyed because I wear black every day and I constantly had chalk all over myself. But this Google Classroom stuff is awful. Anyway, I hope everyone is keeping busy. I hope to come out of this pandemic super fit, but coming home...

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Thank You, Thank You

Preface: I am completely 100% aware of how serious this pandemic is. I am just trying to make a few people laugh (if any). For those of you who do not watch Jimmy Fallon, one of the best things he does is his segment, “Thank you notes.” And for those of you who read my column, you know why: I love a nice thank you note. I especially love Jimmy’s acting out the handwriting onto a piece of stationery and sarcastically and/or seriously thanking someone or something from popular culture that week.  This week I would like to thank the following people (some seriously, some sarcastically, you decide...

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“Wait Until 8th” for Cellphones

For those of you who read my column regularly, you know I often get ideas from social media. My sister has two children: a daughter, age 10, and a son who is four. Of course, my niece, Riley, wants a cell phone. And her argument is “Mom, everyone has one except for me.” I truly admire my sister for standing up for her decision to not purchase a cell phone for her daughter and I hope she sticks to her guns. She has joined an online group called “Wait Until 8th.” This group of parents have agreed to wait until eighth grade to purchase phones for their children. The data about children and cell...

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Silent Dance Party?

I recently went on a cruise, and for those of you non-cruisers, each day you receive a detailed itinerary with all of the activities. There is not one reason why one should be bored on a cruise no matter the age. There is so much to do. There are different trivia games happening during the day, dodgeball tournaments, karaoke and now silent dance parties. The silent dance party piqued my interest this year on Day 4’s itinerary. At 7 p.m. on the main promenade, there was going to be a silent dance party. Now with my experience as a teacher and as a member of WISH, I am familiar with quiet events...

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The Power of the Written Word

When I was a child, my mother made us write thank you notes for pretty much everything: graduations, communions, birthdays, etc. She would buy a packet of thank you notes and we would be required to thank people for their generosity. Not only did we write the cards ourselves, we addressed the envelopes. So at an early age, we knew how to address an envelope. (That will be another column: stuff kids don’t know. Not school’s fault, parent’s fault!) When I became a mother, I also required my children to write thank you notes, even after they moved out of my home! My daughter had a housewarming...

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Thankful For…

As I wrote in last week’s column, I love Thanksgiving. I love the food and the low pressure of no presents and just getting the house ready (which should be done by now but I am a bit behind). Here are a few things I am thankful for: My friends: Again, when I speak of my friends at work, not many have friends they can trace back to elementary school. I am very lucky to have a group of both old and new friends who live all around me. From book clubs, to Christmas in July, we always have such a great time. I texted one of my friends this morning and she responded with exactly the comment I needed....

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Holiday Jumping

Next week is Thanksgiving. Why is Thanksgiving so shunned in society? I remember in elementary school, coloring wonderful pictures of cornucopias, and close dinner gatherings between the Native Americans and the Pilgrims at the first Thanksgiving. Is it because now the story is out and the origin is that we technically pillaged the Native Americans and caused their destruction that Thanksgiving is on its way out? Why doesn’t Thanksgiving get any recognition in the world of media and retail? The only Thanksgiving tune that comes to mind is Adam Sandler’s “The Thanksgiving Song.” However, that...

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Stuff Kids Don’t Know

So I have been teaching high school English, and tutoring writing and reading for over twenty years and one of the things I have noticed in the classroom and in sessions with students while tutoring, is kids are lacking in background information. In my opinion, while taking a standardized exam, I tell the students the two most important things while taking a standardized exam are: vocabulary and background knowledge. If they do not know the words in an answer section, they cannot accurately answer the questions. If they have a background about the topic, the chances are, they will perform better. So,...

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Better Things To Do

 I understand politicians have to, in this day and age, use social media. It is an excellent tool for them to spotlight the work that they are doing and the people they assist on the daily basis. However, I do not think politicians should post selfies, unless it is of them with a constituent or has a political purpose. Recently, one of our local elected officials posted a selfie on Instagram. This local politician then posted a quote and multiple hashtags. One of the hashtags was  #bored. In the Rockaway community should any of our local politicians be bored? I do not think so. Maybe while this...

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