Friday, September 21, 2018

"There are no traffic jams on the extra mile." Zig Ziglar


In Education,teachers often go "the extra mile" to help students to be successful. Countless teachers give up their planning time and lunch time numerous times throughout their careers to give that struggling student just a little more help, time, and encouragement.  Many teachers stay after school, and some even have online "homework hours" for students to ask questions about problems and concepts they don't understand.  Going the extra mile is important; it makes people believe that you have their best interests at heart, and that as a teacher, you truly want all students to succeed. I believe in going "the extra mile."

I had an experience this past week with an automobile business who went more than the extra mile for me. I bought my last two cars from Bill Gray Volvo Cars in McMurray, PA.  From my home in Pittsburgh's North Hills, it is 25 miles to drive to this dealership.  I stay with them, however, because of the great service and care I receive, as a customer and a person.  My late husband always took care of "car stuff", and now I have three men to turn to and to advise me on car issues, tires, etc.  I did not think this dealership could do more for me, but I was wrong.

I had my car in for routine maintenance on Friday, September 7, and I was issued a loaner car, as some parts had to be ordered and they held my car.  Little did I know that on September 8, I would be going to the Emergency Room and be admitted to the hospital for an entire week.  When I was called and told my car was ready several days later, I explained that I was in the hospital, and I could not drive to the dealership to return their car and collect my car.  I tried to get friends to help me, but to no avail. A few hours later, I received a phone call from the owner, Bill Gray, who told me not to worry, that he would drive my car to the hospital and exchange keys with me, a distance of over 30 miles, one way.  Not only did he do that, he also brought me some beautiful "get well" flowers.  I was so impressed, as were the doctors and nurses who heard about this gesture.

I don't know when any business has done something so nice for me.  Needless to say, i will be purchasing my next car from Bill Gray Volvo. I even contacted Volvo International to share my positive experience. Whether it is in the business world or the education world, going the extra mile makes a big difference. Kudos to Bill Gray Volvo for their exemplary service. 

Gratitude fills my heart today. 

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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 



Saturday, September 15, 2018

"Nurses dispense comfort, compassion, and caring without even a prescription." Val Saintsbury


I just spent an entire week in the hospital for diverticulitis.  This hospital stay was not on my calendar, and when it happened, I was sure I would be in and out in a few days, like I was with my emergency appendectomy two years ago. I was wrong. Seven days.

Although I usually write about teachers, I have a week to observe the difficult and demanding work done by nurses, and I was impressed.  Not only do they multitask for 20 or more patients on the floor, they do it with compassion, humor, and caring.

I was at UPMC Passavant Hospital, and my nurses worked 12 hour shifts, but they stayed until all the work was done to insure a smooth transition.  I needed extra attention because of receiving antibiotics through an IV (which had to be changed three times - ouch) The drip took 30 minutes, followed by the loud series of beeps that indicated the process was finished, followed by the sound of feet running down the hallway. To shower, I had to have help to secure a large sticky plastic shield over my IV, which was more work for the nurses. They never complained about my extra needs; in fact,  were wonderful.  Besides the care-giving, they quickly realized I was without any family members.  When I told them my late husband died on my same floor (in the cancer wing), their compassion and conversation helped me to get through each day.  I am so grateful to my nurses for making my stay more than comfortable.  I also told them that I practice gratitude every day, and that I was so grateful for each of them!

I have to get in a few words about teachers. Both my gastroenterologist and one of the Physician's Assistants were former students from North Allegheny, the district where I taught for 35 years.  It is so gratifying as a teacher to see the successes of wonderful young people I knew when they were in tenth grade. North Allegheny sets a very high standard for students, and I am so proud of these two!

This past week, instead of giving compassion and empathy, I was on the receiving end, and for that, I am so grateful.  Those who serve in the medical field deserve our thanks.

Gratitude fills my heart today. 


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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 




















Thursday, September 6, 2018

"Every kid is one caring adult away from being a success story." Josh Shipp






I really enjoy sharing thoughts on Education and stories of inspiration in my weekly post.  This week is no exception. 

I met a 94 year old veteran named Wally on the CBS Evening news on September 5. Wally was in the Navy in WW II,  a fighter pilot in Korea, and is now a retired commercial airlines pilot.  He has found a positive way to connect with middle school students in his hometown. Just because he is 80+ years older than they are, the friendship is real.

Wally waves at the parents in their cars, and greets the kids on their way to school.  After a fist bump for each student, he teaches them real life lessons.  Wally shares favorite quotes with the kids, like "Never look down on somebody - unless you are helping them up." He says the first half of the quote, and they finish the statement.  Another favorite is "Be kind whenever possible.  It is always possible,"  

I was so touched by Wally and his inspirational mission, that I knew he would be the topic of my post this week.  Wally is a person who has seen the world and understands the importance of a caring adult in a child's life, and he recognizes that although every child needs that caring adult, not every child has one. Wise Wally starts the day with the middle school kids in a positive manner, and he gives them important ideas to think about and practice during the school day and in life. He is making them better people by sharing his knowledge and love.


Please take a look at this short, and inspiring clip of Wally and his world.  I think with his engaging style, positive manner, and gift for forming relationships, he was born to be a teacher. 
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/94-year-old-veteran-wally-richardson-imparts-his-wisdom-to-students-heading-to-class/

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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 















Friday, August 31, 2018

"80 percent of success is showing up." - Woody Allen






A school district in Muskogee, OK, has announced that it will be enforcing a state law that calls for fining students $250 for missing school repeatedly with no valid reason.  Students could also be imprisoned for 15 days.  Parents are not happy.  No kidding.

WHAT ARE THEY THINKING?  

I have had the opportunity to observe student behavior for 37 years.  As teachers, counselors, and principals, we worked with students to discover the reason for school avoidance.  Sometimes, there was little parental control, or even substance or child abuse. Some students had low self-esteem, caused by many previous failures.  Some students did not want to come to school because of bullying.  Some needed psychological help for mental illness. The districts I knew worked with the parents first, and only in severe cases of absenteeism, and only after all other avenues were explored, students were referred to the local magistrate, and parents were fined.  Student imprisonment was never an option.

I do not condone student absenteeism.  Chronic absenteeism leads to dropping out of school, which leads to economic struggles and poverty.  But I simply cannot see fining the student, which is the same as fining the parent, and then throwing the student in jail, causing more absenteeism. This policy is not viable, and not a good idea, in my opinion. 

Schools must work toward making the school climate welcoming, safe, and supportive.  School must be a place where students want to be and choose to be.  Teachers must extend themselves to students to assuage fears and anxiety.  Administrators, teachers, parents, and the student must all work together for the good of the student.  

I am appalled that any state would actually have a law regarding the imprisonment of students.  I could not work as a teacher in Oklahoma.

If you are interested, here is the link to the article:  http://1057news.com/2018/08/26/06/16/20/oklahoma-high-school-to-fine-students-for-tardiness-missing-class/ 

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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 
















Friday, August 24, 2018

"Teachers open the door. You enter by yourself." Chinese Proverb



And so, it is "Back to School" time again.  The ominous advertisements started before July 4th, and now the time has arrived.  Teachers can't believe vacation went by so quickly, and neither can the students!  Some are stuck in the before school "Land of the Glum", but I always looked to the start of the school year as a whole new beginning.

As a child, my friends and I would walk the half mile to Birdville Elementary School every day to see if the class assignments were posted on the building windows facing Lilac Street. My friends and I wondered aloud for hours - What teacher would we get?  Would we be in the same class?  Were there any new teachers in the building?  Any new students? 

Through junior high and high school, we walked to the G.C. Murphy in the Heights Plaza to buy our new 3 ring notebooks, pencils, erasers, notebook paper, white hole reinforcements for said notebook paper, and other school supplies. My group of friends liked school, and we speculated endlessly on teachers and tests and studying and note taking. We never missed school unless we were really sick.

Then came college and I became a teacher.  I realized that first day of teaching when a student threw a book, a chair, and a desk at me, that not everyone loved school the way I did. (He did not want to repeat 9th grade English for a third time.)  I acknowledged that I had to entice students to like learning and reading a little bit, but I recognized that it was their job to actually do the work.  I became a master at the "anticipatory set", a sort of "hooking" kids into a desire to learn.  For 35 of the 37 years I taught, I was assigned several classes of reluctant learners, so getting them interested in learning was imperative!  I found that through kindness, cajoling, and creativity, the kids came around to working in the class.  I opened the door, but they had to walk through it themselves.

Teachers, at this point in the year, when you do not know your students and they do not know you, do the best you can, with kindness and creativity to "hook" your students into wanting to learn.  Please, do not look at their "labels"  or listen to colleagues who have opinions on a kid based on "last year."  The new year means it is a fresh start - for everyone.  

I am wishing you a wonderful year.  Although I know there will be difficulties, there will also be moments of great joy and accomplishment.  Remember that you are not teaching a subject, you are teaching human beings. If you treat your students with care and respect, they will return care and respect.  Open the doors to learning, invite your students in, and have a great year!  

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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 












Thursday, August 16, 2018

"Golf inspires us to try things we never thought we could do."






My readers know that I coached Varsity Boys' Golf for 33 years, and I have written many times about the lessons of the game.  Indeed, the game of golf is so much like life!  I also taught many students with special needs during my 37 years in the classroom, and I always looked for a way to allow them to increase their abilities, not to dwell on their disabilities. I found a terrific story to share with you, my readers, that you will enjoy!

This week, I was fortunate to see an inspiring story about a young boy with autism who has been changed by the game of golf. This story touched me personally, as I also had a player on my team whose whole life was changed by his love and involvement in the game of golf, which encourages the golfer to try hard and be the best he can be.  

The First Tee teaches young people important lessons about life through the game of golf, including Integrity, Perseverance, and Respect.  No one knows more about these lessons than Maverick Steiner.  Maverick was born with a rare genetic disease, and he spent the first few years of life in a hospital.  A bone marrow transplant to save his life led to more isolation, as no one was allowed in his hospital room. Once he was home, his parents noticed that he was quiet and withdrawn, and always preferred to be alone, and they received the diagnosis of ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder.) They were devastated, thinking of all of the very worst possibilities that could befall a child with autism.  Trying to draw him out of his lonely bedroom, Maverick's dad worked with his son to find a sport he might be interested in.  Although the parents do not play golf, Maverick chose golf.  They enrolled him in The First Tee, a program which is inclusive of all children, working hard to make accommodations to help every child who wants to play golf.  

Maverick was shy and quiet at first, but within a few golf lessons, he lost his shyness and became extroverted, interacting with the other kids, raising his hand to answer questions, and immersing himself in learning the game. He learned to come out of his shyness, try over and over to learn to hit the ball, and to do it all with manners.  His social skills also blossomed while in The First Tee (social skills can be a real problem for kids with ASD) and his outgoing nature and new confidence even spilled into his school classroom, as he made honor roll for the first time.  I am so impressed with this boy, his family, and The First Tee.  This real life success story shows that no label can or should limit children, and that with encouragement and love,  success and change can happen. I am also thinking about the lessons the other children learned from being with Maverick - lessons like tolerance, acceptance, humility, patience, and even empathy. 

If you would like to see this delightful young boy in action at The First Tee, take a look at this link.  I promise you will smile. https://www.golfchannel.com/video/first-tee-story-maverick-steiner/




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  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ® 













Friday, August 10, 2018

"We tend to become like those whom we admire," Thomas S. Monson



Something remarkable happened in Akron on July 30.  An new school for at-risk third and fourth graders opened, and the star basketball player LeBron James was there to welcome the students and their parents on their first day.  The school was built by James "I Promise" Foundation, because he is choosing to support the kids who are growing up on the same streets where he lived with him mom when he was a boy.

I like that.  Putting all politics aside with the sports/politics fray, I like the message that LeBron James is sending to these children in his hometown.  His monetary and personal investment in this school tells these students that they matter, which is something every child needs to know.

Children need strong and positive role models.  Recognizing that sometimes parents need some help at modeling positive behavior, especially if they are struggling and down on their luck, LeBron has stepped up to become a positive role model for children.  Personally, I believe that most athletes do not fully grasp the power they have as role models, but LeBron James gets it, and I applaud his efforts.

The new school for 240 kids in grades 3 and 4 promises to be more than a school.  The school will offer wraparound support for kids, as well as help to the parents who are seeking employment.  A food pantry is also an integral part of the building.  Programs at the school will provide structure and care to the students, and offer hands-on STEM activities to encourage learning.  Also, the school day and school year will both be longer.  The "I Promise" school hopes to be serving grades 1-8 by 2020.

Athletes are admired for their agility and prowess on the court or on the field, but I am admiring LeBron James for his service to the children and parents of his own community in Akron.  LeBron James, through his generosity of time and money,  and his vision to help lift his childhood community, is a role model kids can emulate.  

Want to know more? Here is a link to the NBC report about the school:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAF7zAThTus 

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
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Facebook   Dede Faltot Rittman or Rittman Rules
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Instagram   dede_rittman  and Gradygetsglasses 
Pinterest   Rittman Publishing, LLC ®