Wednesday, October 20, 2021

"Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." Special Olympics Athlete Oath


                                                                Bits of Positivity 


I live in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the City of Champions.  Pittsburgh boasts three great sports teams.  The Pittsburgh Steelers have won 6 Super Bowl championships, The Pittsburgh penguins have won 5 Stanley Cups; and The Pittsburgh Pirates have won the World Series 5 times.  Pittsburgh also has some of the most generous and giving players on their professional teams, and today I want to focus on Joe Hayden, cornerback for the Pittsburgh Steeler, who was recently named Global Ambassador for the Special Olympics.  This two-time pro bowl player knows all about people with special needs, because of his little brother, Jacob.  Jacob has a cognitive disorder that makes it impossible for him to speak.  Always protective of Jacob since they were children, 9 year-old Joe once saved Jacob's life, when the 4 year-old was drowning in a swimming pool.

Joe Hayden personifies kindness and compassion  He sees the similarities in people, rather than their differences.  Joe understands the passion to play and the desire to have fun with friends transcends any disability!  Joe and the Pittsburgh Steelers have done so much for their "special" friends.

Here is the link to an interview with number 23, Joe Hayden.  Please allow yourself a few minutes to watch - I promise you will be uplifted.  As soon as I saw this clip on television, I knew it would be my inspirational topic for this week's post. Professional athletes have so much influence on our culture, and it is so wonderful to see Joe Hayden's positive outreach in the global community.

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestionsRittman Publishing, LLC ®

Please invite GRADY GETS GLASSES (and me) into your school, in person, or on Zoom. Email us at

I do college and university presentations for student teachers with my practical "Dede's Three C's for Classroom Success: Confidence, Communication, and Creativity" in person or via Zoom. Please email me at

Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school.  if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with groups called Field Trip Zoom and Streamable learning . We will come into YOUR classroom via ZOOM. 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. 

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