Tuesday, November 27, 2012

family = love

Friday, November 16, 2012

read books - not assigned - mostly for pleasure

I read an inspiring book this week, 
Book Love : Developing Depth, Stamina, and Passion in Adolescent Readers, by Penny Kittle

The power of this book is how it can inspire educators to think differently and move middle schools and high schools forward... creating passionate, voracious readers.

Pleasure reading has suffered under the assessment hysteria of the past decade and as a result adolescents are reading less. According to a 2007 NEA report, "Nearly half of all Americans aged 18 - 24 read no books for pleasure." Penny Kittle writes that the way forward is for young people to see themselves as part of a community that values reading as an enjoyable, lifelong activity.

What students read in school is important, but what they read the rest of their lives is most important. The highest priority is to inspire lifelong reading.

Some great points in Book Love: 

  • Every student needs to know the power of a reading life. 
  • Controlling what students read stifles readers. 
  • Assigned reading is a very narrow door to a reading life.
  • The measure of success is how students talk about themselves as readers.
  • When we learn to read well, we read differently.
  • Rereading is an opportunity to see more.
  • The purpose of personal reading is joy, curiosity, and interest.

By transforming a school culture to make reading engagement job one, you have the power to improve education, build communities, and quite possibly change the world.

As a side note, as I read this book I couldn't help thinking of Michael Pollan's catch phrase for his book In Defense of Food: eat food - not too much - mostly plants. And I kept changing that in my mind to: read books - not assigned - mostly for pleasure.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

find your gift

My favorite mayor...

Every young person has a gift, a unique genius. Don't let the world 'level' you; look within for your definition. Live your life as if you couldn't fail, as if you could have your greatest dreams. It's the pursuit that will expand your world.

love letters to strangers

The World Needs More Love Letters 

What the world needs is really basic. Simple. Bare-boned. What the world needs is often forgotten in the race to get followers and “Likes.”


Pure, old-fashioned, never goes out of style, Love.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

a citizen of the world

Born in Latvia, educated in Russia, after his repatriation to Israel, Mischa Maisky considers himself as a citizen of the world: "I'm playing an Italian cello, with French bows, Austrian and German strings, my daughter was born in Paris, my older son in Brussels and my younger one in Italy, I'm driving a Japanese car, wear a Swiss watch, an Indian necklace and I feel at home everywhere where people appreciate and enjoy classical music."

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thursday, November 8, 2012


And with that, I'm off to New York City.

This book was left here intentionally and specifically for you to read. When you are finished, please leave it in another public place where someone else might find it as you did. In any case, I hope it changes your day for the better. 

"Sometimes you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book."  - John Green, TFIOS  

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

election day

"Always vote for principle, 
though you may vote alone, 
and you may cherish the sweetest reflection 
that your vote is never lost." 
- John Quincy Adams

Vote !

Monday, November 5, 2012

rally the troops... boots on the ground...


To make democracy work, 
we must be a nation of participants, 
not simply observers.

  I encourage you to exercise your right to vote...

The ballot is stronger than the bullet.
Abraham Lincoln 

Vote for what you believe in.

election eve

Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting. 
Franklin D. Roosevelt 

Thursday, November 1, 2012


each star a prayer
as they flew through the air

to remember this day
we watch and sparkle along the way