Archive for July, 2008

Jul 31 2008

Thanking ALL Parents!

I would like to take this moment to thank all the parents…

  • Who volunteer at school and help my child have a better day.
  • Who smile and say, “been there” when it’s my child having a meltdown in the store.
  • Who open the door when they see me struggling to carry multiple kids and an umbrella.
  • Who offer to take a picture so the entire family to be in the shot.
  • Who created the concept of drive thru services for pharmacy, dry cleaning, banking, car washes and food services.
  • Who have invented products that only a parent could appreciate.
  • Who coach our kids in sporting and club activities.
  • Who drive our school bus and treat our children like their own.
  • Who help at the cross walks to keep our kids safe.
  • Who attend school board and Parent-Teach Associations/Organizations (PTA/PTO) meetings.
  • Who make snacks and treats for the school bake sale.
  • Who raise loving and responsible children.

Copyright 2008 Cedar Valley Publishing, Stacey Kannenberg; Author of Let’s Get Ready For Kindergarten! and Let’s Get Ready For First Grade!

It really does take a village to raise a child.  Have we forgotten something?  What would you like to thank other parents for contributing? 

144 responses so far

Jul 30 2008

I’m SO Honored!

Wow, am I ever-so honored!  The VirtualRadioNetwork has named ME (yes, lil’ ole’ me) as their businesswoman of the week!


Check out the interview here:

103 responses so far

Jul 25 2008

God’s Peace be With You and Your Family, Randy Pausch

Eariler this week, I urged you to view Randy’s last lecture – and I hope you did, or plan to.  Randy Pausch has died of pancreatic cancer, at the age of 47.

Randy Pausch, the Carnegie Mellon University computer science professor whose final lecture inspired millions, died early today in Virginia of pancreatic cancer.

Dr. Pausch, 47, who turned the lecture into a book, said that no one would have been interested in his words of wisdom were he not a man in his 40s with a terminal illness, leaving behind a wife and three young children.

According to Dr. Pausch’s Web site, a biopsy last week revealed that the cancer had progressed further than expected, based on recent PETscans.

“Since last week, Randy has also taken a step down and is much sicker than he had been,” the Web site said. “He’s now enrolled in hospice. He’s no longer able to post here so I’m a friend posting on his behalf because we know that many folks are watching this space for updates.”

Last fall, Dr. Pausch delivered the lecture at CMU, which still posts it on its Web site. The lecture has attracted more than six million viewers.

In the year preceding the lecture, he had gone through rounds of chemotherapy and radiation, but refused to give in to morbidity or self-pity. Instead of focusing on the cancer, he talked about how to fulfill childhood dreams and the lessons he learned on his life’s journey.

In his 10 years at CMU, he helped found the Entertainment Technology Center, established an annual virtual reality contest and helped start the Alice program, an animation-based curriculum for teaching high school and college students.

After the lecture, he moved to Chesapeake, Va., to spend his remaining time with his wife, children and family.

“Randy had an enormous and lasting impact on Carnegie Mellon,” said university President Jared L. Cohon. “He was a brilliant researcher and gifted teacher. His love of teaching, his sense of fun and his brilliance came together in the Alice project, which teaches students computer programming while enabling them to do something fun — making animated movies and games. Carnegie Mellon — and the world — are better places for having had Randy Pausch in them.”

With the help of Wall Street Journal columnist Jeffrey Zaslow, Dr. Pausch wrote a book, “The Last Lecture,” which was published earlier this year and has now been translated into 30 languages. He elaborated on his lecture and emphasized the value he placed on hard work and learning from criticism. His words were intended as a legacy for his young children.

In May, Dr. Pausch spoke at the Carnegie Mellon University commencement. He said a friend recently told him he was “beating the [Grim] Reaper” because it’s now been nine months since his doctor told him he would die in six.

“But we don’t beat the Reaper by living longer. We beat the Reaper by living well,” said Dr. Pausch, who urged the graduates to find and pursue their passion. He put an exclamation point at the end of his remarks by kissing his wife, Jai, and carrying her off stage.

In addition to his wife, Dr. Pausch is survived by his children, Dylan, Logan and Chloe. Also surviving are his mother, Virginia Pausch of Columbia, Md., and a sister, Tamara Mason of Lynchburg, Va. The family plans a private burial in Virginia. A campus memorial service is being planned. Details will be announced at a later date. In September, Carnegie Mellon announced a plan to honor Dr. Pausch’s memory and his work as “a tireless advocate and enabler of collaboration between artistic and technical faculty members.” CMU is to build the Randy Pausch Memorial Footbridge, which will connect the Gates Center for Computer Science, now under construction, with an adjacent arts building.

The family requests that donations on his behalf be directed to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, 2141 Rosecrans Ave., Suite 7000, El Segundo, Calif. 90245, or to Carnegie Mellon’s Randy Pausch Memorial Fund, which primarily supports the university’s continued work on the Alice project.

More details in tomorrow’s Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
First published on July 25, 2008 at 9:12 am

18 responses so far

Jul 21 2008

Let’s Get Ready to Deal with Death

My grandmother and step-grandfather virtually raised me.  Some of my most precious memories are of doing things with both grandparents – whom I miss dearly.

So, when the story of Randy Pausch began circulating, I took notice.  It was about death – and recently, I’ve lost some very dear people in my life – including my beloved grandmother.

Stop what you’re doing and watch this re-creation of Randy’s last lecture.  YOU deserve to take just a few minutes to deal with the death of someone very close to you – before it happens – or even to help you deal with a death that has already happened or to prepare your family for your future death:

175 responses so far

Jul 16 2008

Clearing the Air on Education

Let’s clear the air:  Here is my take on education.  It was only five years ago that Kindergarten teachers were teaching everything you needed to know in Kindergarten, starting at day one.

Now, kids are expected to KNOW things, and are tested on the following within the first few months of Kindergarten:

  1. The upper case alphabet out of sequence or mixed up.  Kids will be asked to name the letters listed, such as: B, D, X, K, J, M, O, etc.
  2. The numbers to 10, out of sequence or mixed up.  Kids will be asked to name the letters, listed, such as:  2, 5, 9, 8, 1, 3, 4, etc.
  3. Kids will be asked to identify basic colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple
  4. Kids will be asked to identify basic shapes: circle, diamond, rectangle, triangle, oval and square
  5. Kids will be asked to identify basic coins: penny, nickel and dime

As the year progresses, Kindergartener’s will need to know both upper- and lower-case letters and numbers (up to 30), in- and out-of-sequence.  More colors and shapes will be added including hexagon and octagon and more coins such as quarter and dollar.

Children need to know their name, address and phone number and be able to get dressed for outside play and use the bathroom independently, to make that first year a success!

So when the first parent teacher conference happens, your teacher gives you the results.  Your child only knew 5 of 26 letters all mixed up, only recognized the number 1-5 mixed up to 10, could identify basic colors, correctly identified the circle, diamond and a square and was not able to identify the coins, penny, nickel or dime.

Many parents disengage with education at that point – at their first Kindergarten parent teacher conference!!!!  In their mind, they are thinking—why did you not tell me before Kindergarten that this is what kid needs to know?  Coins?  I thought my kid would swallow coins—never thought I needed to teach them that before Kindergarten!

Sadly our early education teachers are not aware of how advantage the Kindergarten curriculum has become.  I do presentations to early childhood teachers who, many times, are not part of a public school system and fall through the cracks.  This is one of the problems with education today.

A parent’s first touch with education needs to be Public Service Announcements and teaching that education for their child(ren) should begin when they are toddlers.

My “Let’s Get Ready” books are what kids will be working on for the entire Kindergarten year, so the more they see it, the more it will make sense when they have that “aha moment”.

It’s like the seat belt law.  If you teach a child to wear their seat belt, they will teach their parents, grandparents, older siblings and family friends to wear theirs.

With my books, the kids will teach their parents that they, too, need to be involved in the educational process for them to succeed!  REMEMBER:  Parents are our children’s FIRST TEACHERS!

And, did you know that there is no standard Kindergarten text book?  Think about that.  No text book for Kindergarten!  How can you build a house without a blueprint?  How can you not not use Let’s Get Ready For Kindergarten? 

7 responses so far