Monday, February 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss

Dr. Seuss's Biography

A person's a person, no matter how small," Theodor Geisel, a.k.a. Dr. Seuss, would say. "Children want the same things we want. To laugh, to be challenged, to be entertained and delighted."

Brilliant, playful, and always respectful of children, Dr. Seuss charmed his way into the consciousness of four generations of youngsters and parents. In the process, he helped millions of kids learn to read.

Dr. Seuss was born Theodor Geisel in Springfield, Massachusetts, on March 2, 1904. After graduating from Dartmouth College in 1925, he went to Oxford University, intending to acquire a doctorate in literature. At Oxford, Geisel met Helen Palmer, whom he wed in 1927. Upon his return to America later that year, Geisel published cartoons and humorous articles for Judge, the leading humor magazine in America at the time. His cartoons also appeared in major magazines such as Life, Vanity Fair, and Liberty. Geisel gained national exposure when he won an advertising contract for an insecticide called Flit. He coined the phrase, "Quick, Henry, the Flit!" which became a popular expression.

Geisel developed the idea for his first children's book in 1936 while on a vacation cruise. The rhythm of the ship's engine drove the cadence to And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street.

During World War II, Geisel joined the Army and was sent to Hollywood where he wrote documentaries for the military. During this time, he also created a cartoon called Gerald McBoing-Boing which won him an Oscar.

The Cat in the Hat is born

In May of 1954, Life published a report on illiteracy among schoolchildren, suggesting that children were having trouble reading because their books were boring. This problem inspired Geisel's publisher, prompting him to send Geisel a list of 400 words he felt were important for children to learn. The publisher asked Geisel to cut the list to 250 words and use them to write an entertaining children's book. Nine months later, Geisel, using 220 of the words given to him, published The Cat in the Hat, which brought instant success.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1984 and three Academy Awards, Geisel authored and illustrated 44 children's books. His enchanting stories are available as audiocassettes, animated television specials, and videos.

While Theodor Geisel died on September 24, 1991, Dr. Seuss lives on, inspiring generations of children of all ages to explore the joys of reading.

(Courtesy of Random House.)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Facebook/Myspace advice

Some great advice for life in general....(I should take it)

Shankman gives half a dozen tips that could make your own social network pay off in a big way.

1. Listen more than you talk. In other words, rather than using social networking to continually put out information, use it to acquire information. For example, rather than tweeting that you're going to Starbucks right now, use Twitter for find out where everyone else is going for coffee, then join them.

2. Offer help. Rather than pushing your products and skills on people, offer to help them in your particular areas of expertise. This is a great way to establish yourself as an expert.

3. Learn from others. Pay attention to others' success stories, and figure out how to apply them to your own situation.

4. Spend time building your social network every day. It only takes a few minutes to send a birthday wish on Facebook, or to congratulate someone for accomplishing something they've posted.

5. Stay in touch with people even when you don't need something. If you haven't had any contact with someone in several years, it's rude to reach out to them out of the blue when you suddenly need something.

6. If you wouldn't do it face to face, don't do it online. For example, don't burden people with updates on your Farmville status or send cutesie hearts or fairies to your business contacts.

Shankman acknowledges that during times like these, it's easy to lose confidence and motivation and withdraw from the networking scene. But he says you can take comfort in the fact that everything is cyclical. "No matter how bad it gets, it will always get better. And when it does get better, be prepared for it to get worse again," he says. "The smart people are the ones who help others even during the good times, when there's not such an apparent need for it." That way, you're in a better position to help when times are tough, and "everyone wins."


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Teach your kids to cook healthy meals

Jamie Oliver went into a classroom full of kids and found that none of the young kids knew what the produce was he held up, everything from tomatoes, to radishes, to potatoes, and eggplant and cauliflower. (at 11:17 on this video, it shows the kids

Strive to eat at home and include them in the meal planning and preparations. If they don't know how to cook healthy, they won't know how to live healthy. If you can teach them to eat a few vegetarian meals a week, as Jamie Oliver is asking in his video above, even better!

My kids eat vegetarian often and don't even realize it. They also always ate what we ate (I processed our meals for them in my food processor, they didn't get jarred baby food). They will eat any vegetable I put in front of them and they help in the garden, where we plant many of the veggies we eat.

Don't mind the margarita on the table, lol..I used this graphic on my Margarita Stewart blog.

Below is an article I got from the Food Network on cooking with kids.

Safe & Easy Kitchen Tasks for Little Fingers

Cooking with your kids will be fun, easy and safe with these tips

Some of the world's greatest chefs got their start hanging onto Mom's apron. Giving your kids a few simple tasks in the kitchen is a fun way to teach them about cooking and nutrition. They may not decide to be star chefs, but you can rest assured they'll know their way around a kitchen — and hey, you never know!

  • Planning the Meal. Dinnertime doesn't have to be a battle over broccoli. Planning a meal with your kids is a great way to introduce some healthy ingredients into their favorite foods.
  • Washing Fruits and Vegetables. Start your kids' culinary education with this simple but important step.
  • Shredding Lettuce. Kids love working with their hands, so they might have so much fun tearing the lettuce that they actually eat the salad!
  • Assembling. Let your kids stack their burgers and sandwiches just how they like 'em.
  • Measuring. Teach your kids how to measure and they'll have mastered one of the fundamentals of baking.
  • Stirring Dry Ingredients. Just make sure their aprons are firmly tied on — you want your kids to stir the dry ingredients, not wear them.
  • Separating Eggs. What child doesn't relish the opportunity to get their hands gooey?
  • Whisking. This job can be tough on little arms, but it's a great way to teach older kids one of the trickier techniques of the kitchen.
  • Frosting a Cake. Encourage your kids to come up with their own frosting designs.
  • Tasting — the best part! See what your kids think of their culinary creations and get some insight into their personal tastes.


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Make Flashcards on the computer

I get a newsletter from Kim Komando several times a week. She sends free downloads, some of the greatest things I have on my computer. I love my sticky notes, my desktop calendar, etc.

I found this one and thought it might be helpful for homeschoolers.

Have a great day, get ready for the next blast of snow! (got your generators ready?)

Learn better and faster using flash cards

Real learning takes a lot more than rote memorization. But it’s essential to start with the basic rules, facts and vocabulary. That’s true for whatever it is you happen to be studying. And those things do require memorization.
But it can be so boring. Playing the guitar is cool. Learning to find each note is tedious. Speaking French makes you look suave. But you have to build up a vocabulary first.

You’ll want to get that baseline knowledge quickly. Using flash cards is a tried and true way to do it. But writing them out on actual cards is so last century. Pauker is a simple flash card program.
You can create your own flash cards or download lessons from the site. The program will test you on your flash cards. And it will keep track of what you’ve learned. It’ll help you get past memorization quickly. Then you can start having fun.
Cost: Free
System: Windows XP, Vista and 7, Mac OS X

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Teaching kids about where their food comes from

This book is awesome in the adult version but now I am reading the Young Readers Edition to see if I want to use it for homeschool...and I DO!
This book is great and it has Q and A in the back. Its a great book for middle school and high schoolers to read to learn about health and food.
Search in this book on Amazon.

I loved the info in his other books. This will be great for my kids!