This is a fabulous issue with a beautifully thorough array of academic and cultural insights. I appreciate the opportunity to have contributed to the Global Perspective section this month. Wonderful work, Dr. Walter!
Thanks, Bronte! I believe we all have reason to be proud of what we've accomplished. This newsletter gives us a chance to highlight our successes for our growing readership. I am so glad you got to go to Ireland, and I appreciate your willingness to share your experiences with us all.
Dr. Walters, this is a wonderful newsletter. I loved reading the story from Bronte Pearson and her experience in Ireland. I found the article by Emily Jackson especially interesting because as teachers, we are always trying to figure out new and creative ways to keep students from texting in class, without sounding like the phone police. Nice job!
Terry Nugent's article was in my opinion, Spot-on. The need for consistency and a stable learning environment for freshman is of a critical concern for all involved. A matter is the growing number of students losing the battle in higher education, due to stress and unnecessary overwhelming circumstances. It is becoming necessary to re-evaluate the goals and implementation by creating a new more conducive curriculum. It is not a matter of "Dumbing down" the curriculum, but creating a more available, obtainable curriculum for freshman that they may grow into writing rather than becoming overwhelmed and running from it. Great article Mr. Nugent.
Thanks Constance! I believe that those who teach general education courses can make or break student expectations about college and themselves, consequently we should be mindful.
For someone who loved to read at a younger age, I find it amazing to see younger people reading and able to help with writing assignments. Literacy skills is very important for everybody, even if you're not going towards the writing career.
You're so right, Alexandria! Literacy skills are essential in every field these days. That's one reason ACTELA's efforts to support ELA teachers in Arkansas is so important. I too love the pictures of children with their books. Thanks to all their parents for sharing them with us!
Dr. Walter, I loved reading the article European Summer. I enjoyed reading about your visit to Europe. I hope one day I will be able to go to Europe as well.
Sometimes I take students with me when I travel, Zoe. If you continue your studies in English maybe you could take a travel seminar before long. It would be fun to show you Ruskin's home in the Lake District and introduce you to members of the Guild of St George. Dream big!
I can relate to the article by Terry Nugent. When I first came in as a freshman, I was so excited about this new chapter in my life that is still amazing! My writing classes were and still are the ones that I constantly worry about. I want to become a strong writer and my first semester I did not get much feedback at all. But since I've been in Dr. Walter's class, it has really helped me and I like seeing what she thinks about my papers and what I need to work on. Feedback on papers and any work for that matter, it critical for every student and I strongly believe that it boosts the students confidence.
Thanks for reading my article Kalee. We sometimes wonder if students pay attention to our feedback, so it's nice to hear your perspective. Keep up the good work.
Dr. Walter, I really liked the European Summer article and reading about your visits to Europe. I found it really nice and interesting that you were able to visit the museum that displays art made by Ruskin, since we have learned so much about him!
Recently many museums have displayed Ruskin's work. The exhibition my students and I saw in Venice last March was really amazing, and visiting the museum in Sheffield is always a rich experuience. Even museums in this country have been celebrating Ruskin this year.
I hope you will see some of these exhibits in person. Until you do, explore them online and share what you find. Maybe that could be part of your service learning project!
This is, admittedly, the first issue I've read from this blog and I must confess, I do like most of it. I thought the segment titled Arguing, Writing,and , Oh My! was great, as my favorite english classes are those who embrace the fictitcious side of literature fully. I also appreciate the segment about the previous student of Dr. Kay Walter, as it's nice to know people acknowledge success outside of the time that they were together. Although I thought the written aspects of this issue were superb, I found the visual representation to be lacking. This may be me nitpicking but the paper came off feeling less serious and less professional due to the frequent use of bright colors and clip art.
Justin, you have such a unique perspective. I believe you should bring it out more in writing.
Obviously, I'm pretty partial to the kiddos in Readers and Writers. They were very excited to see themselves featured in print. Thank you!
As many others, I admired your European adventures and also Living the Irish Story. I've always believed Ireland would be an exciting place to visit. And even though the majority of my classmates would disagree with this older, nontraditional student, I was intrigued by the suggestion of receiving benefits for simply staying off the cell phones. It was almost shocking to me upon starting college this fall, how many people seem incapable of just walking to class enjoying their surroundings. It's no wonder cell phone use accidents are on the rise when today's culture encourages the constant connection to social media instead of just being satisfied with their own thoughts at times.
Thanks so much, Amber! Ireland was truly a dream. I highly recommend taking several days to explore if you ever decide to make the trip. The people and culture are absolutely lovely, and the scenery is truly remarkable. I hope you’re able to go someday! Best wishes!
I am delighted to know you are fostering the literacy skills of your children and can't wait to teach them in my classes. Between now and then, let's take them to Europe!
Hello Amber! I am fairly attached to my phone as a young student, so using this app was very helpful! I have wanted to try using it in my classroom at the boys and girls club next summer, so we'll see how that goes! Thank you for being interested, and I hope this app helps!
I read the article called Readers and Writers, and I felt that the article is very inspiring. Many parents need to read this article and show their kids the importance of reading and literature. In our day and age literature is everything.
You are right about the importance of literacy, Christina. Even very young children need to be talked to, read to, and sung to in order to develop the foundation for learning language skills. Long before babies start to talk, they are already listening very carefully. ELA teachers see the results of early language input, or the lack of it, very clearly in their classrooms. By the time children get to school the earliest literacy opportunities have passed by. We spend the rest of our lives benefiting from, or trying to catch up on, our earliest language lessons.
Amber, it's so great that your children can see the benefit of taking extra steps to get through stages of literacy and writing. Amber has definitely taken initiative to help her children advance! Hopefully someone with a higher stance in finances will read Dr. Longings piece on improvement of teachers and literacy! It would be greatly beneficial.
Thank you Brittney! I always read age appropriate books to my children in the early stages of their lives. At bedtime, we would read a couple of their fun favorites then I would pull out the big guns to put them sleep. The bigger the book, the better. My oldest daughter could always hold out the longest just to listen and I truly believe it helped contribute to her vast vocabulary. When you have children of your own, or even if you don't...read, read, read!
Thanks for reading Brittney! When it comes to improved salaries for teachers, most agree, but don't on how it is to be achieved. There are temporary solutions, but permanent solutions are not in place for most school districts. In addition, most administrators don't want the inevitable conflict that comes with varied compensation. Improved salaries for high-need teachers is the answer, but will probably never be put in place.
Dr. Walter, I really enjoyed reading the article European summer. It was very interesting reading about your visit to Europe. I personally love to travel and so by reading this article makes me want to strive and work hard so that I possibly could get the chance to do these such great things in the future!
Classrooms aren't the only way to learn. Travel, too, is a form of education. I'm so pleased to hear you say that you love to travel. My Daddy taught me from infancy that travel is possible, is educational, and is fun. It doesn't take a lot of money to travel if you have an open mind and a willingness to make friends along the journey. Education is a powerful advantage in life, as you realize, and your travels will benefit you greatly. I can't wait to hear about the strange and wonderful places you visit and all you learn from them!
Another great issue! Thanks for including my review!
Always lovely to have a review from you, Allie! Thanks for writing!
Dr. Kay Walter,
I really enjoy your article about European Summer. I am a big traveler and have been able to see many state in the United States but i would like to see more outside of the states and Europe was one of the places i would like to see. I have enjoyed listen and reading about your travels outside of the states and it makes me want to see more. Also I am great full to see that Amber's children are doing so well and i love hearing how they help there mom with school work.
Thanks Mylynn! Being a fulltime student while raising three kids is quite a challenge. I love their excitement of me going back to school. One of the biggest helps would probably be Lucy's aid as a study partner. Just last night she gave me a secondary teaching on my math homework. Gotta use all my resources. :)
Ruskin loved to travel too, and he called Venice the "paradise of cities." How sad he would be to see the recent pictures of Venice in the news! I hope the world can work together to save the treasures of our creativity before they are lost!
This was my first time replying to an article. One particular article that really caught my eye was " Keep it in your Pocket", by Emily Jackson. In every classroom it seems cell phone usage is one of the main problems with students and finding a good solution has been tough. However, I think the idea of an app keeping track of their phone usage to earn points towards prizes is a great idea. Students would try harder to stay off their phones if a prize is on the line. It's unfortunate that we have to create something like this to try and get students to put the phones up but, I am interested to see if the app will actually work or not.
Thanks for being so interested in my article, Riley! I really believe in this app because cell phones aren't the enemy-there's just a time and place to use them as a student. Maybe try out the app for yourself, or suggest it for your whole class!
Wow! I’m amazed by all the excellence in this newsletter! Great work, Dr. Walter for creating this wonderful platform for educators and students in Arkansas and beyond.
You've been around to watch this newsletter grow from its infancy, Jason. I'm glad to think you are proud of what it has become. It is now a record of Arkansas literacy endeavors read around the globe. Wouldn't my Daddy be proud!
Most people think that Literacy Skills is not important or they don't take Literacy Skill serious which are wrong. Literacy Skills is important for everybody and now days it takes part in every writing career. Students who love to read find it better when they learn about literacy skills, which happened to me I learned it more when they thought me literary skills, then just reading books. So thankful, for Dr. Walter for inspiring us in class everyday I have learned a lot of stuff and I am continuing to learn more stuff with her being our instructor.
Oscar, thank you for being so interesting in Literacy Skills! I am passionate about teaching literature as well, and Dr. Walter has taught me a lot that I can pass on to my students! If you are interested in learning more about literacy skills, I would suggest looking over Grover Welch's article again to find more ideas to research further!
What another great newsletter! It is awesome to see educators who care so much for their students education and achievements. Thanks for sharing and I am looking forward for the next one!
Thanks, Lauren! We are hard at work on the next issue. And if you are excited seeing educators who care for their students, I think there are some great articles awaiting your reading in the November issue!
I enjoyed the article about young people reading. It is important to encourage them to read at a very young age.People need to take time at home to dead to and with their kids before the kids start school.
I couldn't agree with you more. Families who read to their little ones are such a benefit to ELA teachers! I love the picture of Nathan and Angela reading together because I remember my sister's reading to me when I was young as some of our closest times. Snugly times exploring books together support both educational development and emotional bonds.
I agree dad. The most important things to teach any child is reading and writing. They are so willing to learn everything at a tiny age. Parents should be more aware of the importance and how it benefits the child in future years.