I love this time of year! School routines have settled down, leaves are showing their magnificent colors, and there is a crispness to the air. It is the calm before the storm. In just a few weeks, the holidays will be upon us. While I enjoy celebrating them, sometimes it is a very hectic time. So, I bask in this quiet time…and get more reading done.
I am currently reading two books – “Music with the Brain in Mind” and “Teaching with Poverty in Mind – What being poor does to kids’ brains and what schools can do about it”. Both are by Eric Jensen. The first book discusses evidence, including brain research, that defends the need of musical arts in schools and how, as teachers and parents, we can apply the science to practice. In the second book, Mr. Jensen examines how even in poor conditions children can become successful academically. It also provides ways in which “schools can improve the academic achievement and life readiness of economically disadvantaged students.”
During this peaceful time, I encourage you to investigate how you, too, can improve the life a child in need. Volunteer as a reader or music teacher at Head Start programs or as a coordinator of Reach Out and Read programs for a nearby pediatrician’s office. The simplest gesture can make a difference!