Thursday, May 21, 2020

"Fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind." Dale Carnegie


During this time of COVID 19, we have all been inside for more than 2 months.  When I was a child, America had a polio outbreak, yet no one was required to stay inside.  Same for the 1968 Hong Kong flu epidemic in our country.  I appreciate the seriousness of this issue, and in fact, I am in the group most at risk.  However, I strongly disagree with closing swimming pools and stopping summer activities like Little League this summer.  According to science experts, the virus cannot survive in the heat.   In my limited scientific knowledge, chlorine kills germs and viruses.  So why is Allegheny County closing the pools?

I was a teacher for 37 years, and I have spent my life devoted to kids.  I coached golf and directed shows, served on committees that helped kids, and I am a big fan of outdoor play, team sports,m and kids hanging out with friends - even at 6 feet apart. I am incensed that my county in Pennsylvania is not opening swimming pools and having team sports this summer.  

I am angry because childhood is when kids learn to handle real life, and the kids are being deprived of learning opportunities.  When children and teens spend time together playing sports, at the playground, at the swimming pool, and at camp, they are learning valuable life lessons.  All these experiences teach them how to assimilate and become a part of the culture, along with lessons about growing up.  Through Little League and other sports, they learn the value of becoming a “team player.” Additionally, they learn social skills and how to get along with others, and how to set and work toward a goal, be it a personal or a team goal.  These activities provide opportunities for personal growth and they provide opportunities for the emergence of leadership qualities in young people.  Summer activities provide the basis for kids to discover who they are, what they like, and perhaps, these activities will even lead to occupational choices in later life.  Kids learn to stand up for themselves through summer activities, as they grow and mature.

I have written a strong letter to my local officials and the Governor of Pennsylvania, asking them to re-think their position regarding summer activities. 70% of the deaths in Allegheny County have been in nursing homes, because officials sent patients with the corona virus back to the nursing homes instead of keeping them in the hospital.  Children should not be penalized for the lack of common sense with elected officials.

Let's let the kids be kids this summer.

Hoping you are doing well.  I would love to hear from 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.  and a company called GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 and 2018 (new edition) from The Authors' Zone.Grady also won a 2018 prestigious Moonbeam Award for Best Children's Book with Merchandise.

Visit Dede's web page 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!

Twitter       @dederittman
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