Saturday, August 19, 2017

"Every risk is worth taking as long as it's for a good cause and contributes to a good life." Richard Branson





Sometimes, the goodness and caring of people is overwhelming, especially when it concerns their home towns. Maybe you saw the CBS News story about 3 young men who took quite a risk- they opened a pizza shop in their North Nashville neighborhood, where 40 percent of the people live in poverty, and the unemployment rate is three times the rate of the rest of the city of Nashville.  The place is called "Slim and Husky's."

There three college roommates each invested around $1000 of their own money to turn a former garage into a taste-testing pizza lab, and then a restaurant.  They hoped to sell 300 pizzas a day, but their sales are now at about 1000 a day.  Here is the best part of this business schematic:  the three friends have hired local neighborhood people to work in the shop, providing job opportunities to this downtrodden section of the city - and the employees can walk to work.  Because three young men  believed in their town and took a risk for a good cause that they believed in, they have started a revitalization process in the neighborhood.  

So often, good things happen when an individual or a group decides to challenge a situation they find unacceptable, and to figure out a way to change it.  I find these three young men at"Slim and Husky's" to be a true inspiration.  If you have not seen the story, here in the link: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/nashville-pizza-joint-slim-and-huskys-delivering-for-its-struggling-neighborhood/ 

I am sharing this inspirational story because maybe YOU  have something that you want to change, and you will be inspired by these three friends.  In our crazy world, it is great to hear about something so uplifting. 

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

"There are no traffic jams along the extra mile." Roger Staubach




Teachers want parents to be involved with the school and the child's education, but in some neighborhoods, those two things are just about impossible.  Research tells us that when the parents, the teacher, and the student all work together, the student benefits and success is more likely to occur.  But what if you teach in a school district where parents work shift work, don't have cars, and can't meet at the school according to the school schedule?  As teachers, do you complain and and shrug it off?  Or do you brainstorm a creative solution to the problem?

In Chattanooga, Tennessee, the teachers wanted the parents to be involved with the school, so they bought a big red bus, refurbished it with tables and chairs and iPads,  and the bus goes to the neighborhoods and the parents!  The teachers meet parents for 30 minute meetings, even on weekends. Stocked with snacks, the bus travels to the students and their families, and these caring teachers are changing the lives of their students.

I know that when I was teaching for 37 years, I spent lots of money on school supplies, tissues, and items for students who could not afford them.  School budgets can't provide everything needed in the classroom. But the idea of teachers spending their own money on a bus and all the items it took to make the mini-classroom rock and roll is absolutely inspiring!  You can read the story here:  http://www.upworthy.com/these-teachers-in-a-low-income-district-found-a-genius-way-to-meet-with-parents 

Teachers want the best for their students and their families, and although some teachers give the profession a black eye, these teachers make our profession proud!  They could have turned their collective backs on the families. Instead, they devised a way to involve and include the families of their charges. Reading this story made me inspired and proud to be a teacher! 

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available at  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 

Friday, August 4, 2017

"I miss the me I was when you were here."


August 7, 2017, will be the sixth wedding anniversary I will be spending alone since my husband died in May of 2012.  Everyone said it would get easier, but the truth is, it doesn't. Not really.

It's not like I am stuck in my grief, as I have certainly expanded my wings in the past five years - from working  as a radio/TV show producer to writing and publishing two books and becoming an entrepreneur.  I have learned so many new things : about Twitter and social media and branding; about how to fix a toilet; about shopping and cooking for one; about my limits when lifting heavy objects; about writing for magazines and speaking to groups; about how it feels to be alone.  I have learned to pay more attention to planning trips and making more of an effort to note where I park, since Scott was often the planner, navigator, and driver when we traveled. He took care of me, and now I have to take care of me. I don't like that.  And in many ways, Life keeps reminding me of Scott's absence.  Like last week, when I bought a power washer for my deck. After trying everything in the manual, the washer would not work, so I returned it, telling the clerk, "Life was so much easier before my husband died.  I just can't get this to work."  She understood.

Despite being sad sometimes, since I continue to miss Scott so much, my heart continues to be filled with gratitude that we had such a fun and loving marriage for almost 32 years.  We were two pieces of a single puzzle, completing each other and making each other whole. Our marriage was filled with so much laughter, and now, I just don't laugh as much as we used to. Although I do make a conscious choice to be happy every single day, the exuberant joy of sharing life with the one I love is gone. The sound of laughter is hollow now, without my other half to send the reverberation of that laughter back to me. 

I am so grateful that Scott helped to shape me into the person I am today.  We married at 29, after a failed marriage for each of us.  It took a while to trust and love again unequivocally, but we worked toward our marriage partnership every day.  We appreciated each other, and shared that appreciation openly. We supported each other in all of our individual endeavors; and if one of us was involved in a project or event, the other one helped, too.  For example, when Scott was on stage and I did not have a part, I worked on his show in costumes or as bookholder.  When I was in a show and Scott did not have a part, he built the scenery for my show.  Our beautiful lives were intertwined like that for all the years we were married, and I miss that daily love and support. 

Happy anniversary to my other half in Heaven!  One thing I know for sure is this: Love never dies.  Thank you for the laughter and the life we shared.  And one more thing. I miss the me I was when you were here.  I liked that Dede so much better than this one. 



Scott and Dede August 7, 1981 



As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 




Saturday, July 29, 2017

"Teaching can be a lonely profession." Dede Rittman


Teaching can be a lonely profession. Although surrounded by students throughout the day, teachers have no adults in the room to discuss strategies or ideas, to help make decisions, and to brainstorm options for dealing with students and parents. For new teachers, the loneliness of the classroom can be traumatic.  Teachers need to support each other!

In my first two years if teaching, three of us were new, and we banded together to invent lessons, and we had a veteran teacher who was our department mentor who helped us with all of the issues new teachers encounter.  In my third year of teaching, I was in a new district with no friends. Luckily, everyone ate lunch in the single faculty room, and many veteran teachers acted as mentors and advisors throughout that first year.  My building had a culture of teachers helping each other, collaborating on student and faculty events, and cultivating friendships which continue to endure, some 40+ years later. Case in point: 
Last week, an old friend and former colleague came to visit Pittsburgh.  She has lived in California for several years, but she continues to make the pilgrimage to see friends in the "Burgh once a year.  Nothing remarkable about that, right?  What is remarkable, however, is the number of friends who showed up to see her- with just a few days notice!  Teacher friends who are still in the classroom, and those who have been retired for 15+ years congregated last week, and it was as if we had never been apart for a moment.  Out group was so cohesive and tight at school, and years later, we continue to support each other.  A female group from my former school go out to lunch every month; our district has a North Allegheny Retired group with over 300 members.  The group's officers and board offer fun activities, a Spring and Christmas luncheon, and group meetings,  to assist those getting close to Medicare as well as information about Elder Law and other important topics. In many other districts, once a teacher retires, ties are broken, but for all of us who enjoyed teaching together and being a support group to each other, our retired lives continue to include those lifelong friends. 

I urge teachers to try to cultivate a helping and sharing culture in your individual school buildings, and  to enjoy the camaraderie of your colleagues.  Teaching can be so lonely, but being surrounded by caring friends makes the job so much easier!  




As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 







Sunday, July 23, 2017

"Teachers have three loves: love of learning, love of learners, and the love of bringing the first two loves together." Scott Hayden





Although I am a retired teacher, I spend several hours per week on Twitter, because I still love learning.  I enjoy reading and sharing articles on Education, and I have found that  being on Twitter has helped me to make new relationships, and in some cases, to even have an impact on others.  I can say for sure that others on Twitter have definitely made an impact on me!

I enjoy encouraging others, as well as reading positive quotes and stories, and Twitter is a great site to find encouragement. "Liking" a post can lead to a virtual dialogue, and I have enjoyed many conversations about Education with Twitter colleagues.  So many teachers are on Twitter, looking for ideas and articles to help them to improve and to serve their students in the best possible manner. Twitter helps teachers to stay current on issues and trends, and it is a great forum for teachers to share strategies and concepts from their classrooms.

If you are a teacher and you are not on Twitter, I urge you to sign up!  Just like everything else worthwhile in life, Twitter is about forming positive relationships with others and sharing and learning together.   In my opinion, one of the best qualities that teachers can share with others is their love of learning, and Twitter affords endless possibilities for learning much about Education and sharing that knowledge with students.  I would be honored to connect with you on Twitter! @dederittman   Happy learning! 

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 



Saturday, July 15, 2017

"Trade your expectation for appreciation and the world changes instantly." Tony Robbins





In the past few months, several of my friends have been diagnosed with cancer, senile dementia, Alzheimer's, and other major problems.  In the past six weeks, four of my friends died - their ages were 61, 64, 64, and 65. 

We never know what Life is going to hand us. 

I remember the shock when my husband was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer.  In our almost 32 years of marriage, my late husband, who had the constitution of Superman, had only one cold, one allergic reaction, and one broken leg - then stage 4 colon cancer. 

Thinking about all of this has made me focus even more about being appreciative of the life I have been given. With so much negativity in the news, sharing so much sadness with friends, and trying to cope with some major health problems of my own, I am choosing to show gratitude and appreciation.  I speak the words aloud! I use statements like:

"Thank you for a beautiful day to play golf."  


"Thank you for so many wonderful friends."

"Thank you for a 32 year marriage that was so wonderful that I am comforted by memories."

"Thank you for a beautiful and comfortable condo, and the ability to pay for it."

"Thank you for giving me the inspiration and work ethic to write and sell my books to help others."

Being grateful is SO EASY!  You just have to look around to appreciate living in America, and not a third world country with no running water and electricity. 

I have noticed that I am so much happier when I am showing gratitude.  Please give it a try! look for the positives and be thankful, rather than pointing out and complaining about any negatives. I promise your life will improve!  Please - let me know how showing gratitude works for you!  

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®



Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

Connect with Dede!

Twitter       @dederittman
Periscope   @dederittman
Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
LinkedIn   Dede Rittman
Google +   Dede Rittman
Tumblr      The Bunny Teacher
Instagram   dede_rittman 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 






Saturday, July 8, 2017

"The only disability in life is a bad attitude." Scott Hamilton





I enjoy stories of inspiration, especially when the stories are about  great things happening for kids with disabilities. And because I have so many readers who are teachers, I really like to share these stories. I have an inspirational story to share today!

It's summertime, and all kids love playing and cooling off in water parks.  Go to any water park and you will hear squeals of delight and shouts of laughter, along with wide grins that personify pure summer fun. But what about a child who has a disability, like being in a wheelchair?  Have you ever seen a water park for kids with physical challenges?

The devoted father of a girl named Morgan wanted his daughter to have the opportunity to enjoy a water park on a hot day, and after 3 years of planning and working with experts, Gordon Hartman of San Antonio made his dream for his daughter into a reality.  He built a 4 acre water park that can accommodate ALL kids - including those with physical challenges. And kids with challenges even get in free!

When I began my teaching career in 1974, students with special needs were not mainstreamed as they are today.  Many teachers were scared and nervous, as we had limited or no training for accommodating and helping our new students. My philosophy about teaching students with special needs was simple- they were all kids- so I gave them my best and  loved them all! When I had questions, like how to attach a writing contraption to the forearm and hand of a student who was a paraplegic, I asked the student to help me. (Not making a big deal made it easier for the student, and I told him that he needed to teach me!) 

Back then, and throughout my 37 year career,  I embraced my students with disabilities. In fact, they all taught me to be a better teacher.  My lip-reading, hearing impaired students made me slow my speaking pace; the students who were blind made me teach to more than the visual learners, my students with physical challenges and/or mental challenges made me rethink my material and methods so that every learner could be involved. And guess what?  Because I changed my teaching methods for a few, everyone in the classroom benefitted. So many terrific former students - who had problems I had never heard of and could barely pronounce - taught me many lessons about patience, perseverance, and the importance of a good attitude. 

I have always been an advocate for equal rights and opportunities for students, whether they be regular education or special education. Looking back, I can actually remember some of my first mainstreamed students wistfully saying they "Wish they could _____ (fill in the blank-the possibilities are endless)- like the rest of the kids."  

People like Gordon Hartman, who wanted his daughter to feel included and welcomed, are an inspiration. The world provides so many lessons to all of us. I hope you will take a moment to read about Morgan's Inspiration Island, named for his daughter.  The video clip and story are very inspiring! 

http://www.cbsnews.com/videos/worlds-first-ultra-accessible-water-park-opens-in-texas/ 


http://www.cbsnews.com/news/morgans-inspiration-island-special-water-park-san-antonio-texas-gordon-hartman/ 

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. 
Rittman Publishing, LLC ®



Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. www.Fieldtripzoom.com  GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit http://www.theauthorszone.com/submissions/  


Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available  www.dederittman.com Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out!  http://www.fieldtripzoom.com/ 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at dederittman@gmail.com  The website www.gradygetsglasses.com now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. https://www.facebook.com/gradygetsglasses?ref=hl 

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