Saturday, January 14, 2017

A child who reads will be an adult who thinks. - Unknown

I was privileged to present my book and author presentation for GRADY GETS GLASSES in Sharon, PA, on Wednesday at the New Light Education Center.  The 60+ mile trip from Pittsburgh was easy because of good weather, and my presentation coincided with the Mercer County vision screening for the 4 and 5 year olds.  The kids were so receptive to both Grady and to me; in fact, we were both delighted by several of the little ones hugging my knees and Grady the bunny.

I taught high school for 37 years, and every time I present to such young children, I find that having the ability to watch such early learning is so exciting!  Upon arrival, I perused the room, and every child was actively engaged - with books, with the smart board, with a teacher or an aide, and the kids were so happy!  Dr. April Lynn Torrence and her staff provide remarkable resources for the community, and I was so happy to be able to support their work.

During this past year of traveling around the United States and speaking to elementary students, I have found that little children, for the most part, LOVE books.  For all 37 years of teaching 10h grade English, I had to work really hard to encourage most kids to read, and it was a real challenge.  I devised fun and interesting anticipatory sets, gave tantalizing hints about events in upcoming chapters, and worked to engage every student through reading and discussion. Indeed, attempting to get kids excited about reading all those years was a real challenge. However, the little ones are so receptive to reading, which makes me think that we owe them something important.  As teachers, parents, aunts, uncles, friends, and neighbors, we must nurture that love for reading, because we are  not just helping kids to be better readers, but also better thinkers. 

Books have always been among my best friends, and I know that every book has had an influence of my thought process.  Let's keep reading to our children and help them to continue to love reading and learning! 

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

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  

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 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! 

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  The website now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. 

Connect with Dede!

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