Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Tuesday Twitter PRACTICE Chat with HeidiSongs: ADHD Support

#TeacherFriends Practice Chat w Heidi Butkus @HeidiSongs via RainbowsWithinReach


We are learning together. 
We are supporting each other. 
We are stretching boundaries. 
We are making new #TeacherFriends!!! 

This week there's something special getting created!
Heidi of Heidi Songs is honing in on the topic of ADHD. 

We are guiding the chat in a very specific, concrete direction. 
It is certain to be of MONUMENTAL help to classroom teachers! 

PLUS there are PRIZES!!!

"Official" Kickoff is at 9 PM EST!*****

*****I launched this effort mid-summer, in the hopes of luring some non-Twitter people into the Twitter fold. I thought it would be supportive to call it a 'PRACTICE' chat and therefore take some of the edge and pressure off. They liked it! They LIKED it! We continue to call it a PRACTICE chat -- which is a tad counter-intuitive for the pace of the thing these days. 

HOWEVER!!!!!!!!! If you arrive as an "EarlyBird" beginning at 8:30 EST, we will be there to specifically support your learning curve and offer encouragement. We have recently decided that it is important to reward the EarlyBird Newbies and will be giving some digital prizes BEFORE the chat begins at 9:00. EXTRA INCENTIVE! Your odds are VERY good! 

Heidi has been HARD at work explaining her own Twitter curve of learning. See her thoughts here. She has chosen a Top 10 Kinder Tweep List. It was sweet of her to give me an honorary mention {since I don't teacher kindergarten.} 

She has also written an extensive article on #ADHD in preparation for our chat tonight. You can get a sneak peak of her thoughts in her article to prepare for chatting with Heidi in person. 

photo of: VISUAL Learning: Cues, Supports and Systems

I have a collaborative PinBoard for Special Needs that is also very supportive and FILLED with links of interest. There are already over 1000  classified for your support! My own article RoundUP of dozens of 'visual' learning supports for the classroom and beyond are gathered into this article

Set your alarm clock! Make plans. Order a pizza! Join us! Learn! 

As if that isn't sufficiently amazing. 
We are entering into an awesome era! 
Heidi made the connection from our chat to ESGI

ESGI has offered to become an official SPONSOR of our chat! 
This week they will be giving away an ANNUAL membership to their software program. 
{Retail value of $199.00!!!} 

To enter to win the EarlyBird Prizes AND the official chat prizes, 
you will need to enter your info into the Google doc that will be tweeted through out the chat. 
{you only need to enter your contact info one time to qualify for ALL prizes!}

Here's the best news of all! 
We archive each weekly chat!!!

Did you miss the amazing insight last week on Critical Thinking? 
You can follow the chat at your leisure and click through to the links at your own speed. 


Let me just *PROMISE* you that you'll want to come back here to get in on all of the specifics for THE BIG REVEAL! TALK ABOUT PRIZES!!!! This whole week is gonna be BONZO! 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Mind Mapping & Making Music in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement

Music: Mind-Mapping the Benefits of Singing in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement


Once upon a time there was a music-lady. 
Actually. Before that she was an elementary Art teacher..... 
but let's just start with the music-lady chapter, 
which is now unfolding in the 19th year of evolution. 

The music-lady travels about the country sharing her ideas, songs and 
happy sing-song simple, repetitive approach with teachers near and far. 

In the course of those travels she saw this "Mind Map" displayed in the hallways of Concordia College's Early Childhood Building, in Chicago. 

It stole her heart. Literally. Completely.
This simple graphic inspired our artsy-music-lady. 
This mind-map started a gazillion thoughts all these years later. 
What if she could capture & summarize her insight onto one page?

So she got out her dry erase board and started thinking. 
That lead to grabbing a great drawing marker and some colored pencils.
Here's what things looked like early on. 
[Maybe you saw that image on her Instagram feed this summer?] 

Music: Mind-Mapping the Benefits of Singing in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement

MUSIC: At the heart of it all! 
Singing is 'within' music. 
So that's where I started. 
I put the word singing in the middle of my page.  
Then I built everything out from that starting point. 

There are a bajillion benefits to singing {and music.} 
I looked at two major categories of benefits. 
Moving above the word singing are all of the benefits that arise in what I have classified as the 'language' division, arising from the lyrics within the song. 

Music: Mind-Mapping the Benefits of Singing in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement

Below the word 'singing' are the benefits that arise from the beat. 

I think of the beat as the foundation for my song/the music. 
You will see I have then divided those benefits into two major compartments: 


Music: Mind-Mapping the Benefits of Singing in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement

My finished "Mind Map" is now in pdf format and can be downloaded for
This is what it looked like just prior to being 'finished.'

Music: Mind-Mapping the Benefits of Singing in Early Childhood with Debbie Clement


***I have TWO earlier articles here at blog-Rainbow, 
where I have attempted to spell out my approach. 
If you click the picture you will be transported back in time. 

MUSIC as Motivator: Debbie's Dozen Directions, top 12 suggestions from Debbie Clement

Music as Motivator: Intelligence Theory and MORE! 

I spend an inordinate amount of time sharing visual images here. 
Let's conclude today with some of my favorite 'visuals' from the MUSIC world. 

This first bulletin board was so WIDE it was impossible
 for me to photograph the entire image. 
This is from my school visit in Arlington, outside of DC.

photo of: Music Bulletin Board via RainbowsWithinReach

photo of: Classroom Behavior Chart Using Music Theme (Behavior Chart RoundUP via RainbowsWithinReach)

Look at the 'header' from one of my newest Twitter followers! 
What an incredible collaborative MUSIC bulletin Board. 
Sue gave me permission to use it in this article. 

My intro-freebie song is "Going to the Library" 
which is available for immediate download at Teachers Pay Teachers. 

"Going to the Library" Song Mp3 Digital Download

I have written over 100 original songs. 
The two that I think are the *MOST* perfect for the beginning of the school year are: 

"You're Wonderful" and 
"Red, White and Blue" 

Begin the Year Performance Songs by Debbie Clement

Each of these two songs I have turned into the traditional picture book format. 
There is a CD insert with the sung version & also the instrumental version. 
Also included in the end-matter are charts for both sign language and music instrumentation. 

photo of: Three Picture Books by Debbie Clement of Rainbows Within Reach

-- Debbie 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Twitter Tuesday PRACTICE Chat: Critical Thinking with Jen Jones

Twitter PRACTICE Chat Continues!

We have safely migrated from northern WI to tropical FL! 
We arrived last night: 
swapped our pine trees for our palm trees. 

Exciting news? 
{our cable TV? not-so-much} 
Of the two, I'm MOST delighted to be connected to my 
in time for our weekly chat, tonight! 

I personally will have to shift time-zones to participate now. 
Here's the quick reference map. 
We begin weekly, officially at 9:00. 
*At 8:30 we start with newbies who want additional support.
We have #TeacherFriends who pop in at 8:30, for whom the hour exceeds their bed-time, too! 

Like an 'open-house' the lights are on, the welcome mat extended and come when you are able. 

Our guest tonight is the famous Jen Jones of "HELLO" fame. 
She will focus the chat on the topic of her excellence: 


Isn't it *AMAZING* that what was born from a desire to help 'connect' teachers to each other and familiarize all of us with the power of the Twitter network, would grow into this powerful and incredible and ever-growing chat? 

It is somewhat 'counter-intuitive' that what was born to help support newbies has grown so much, that the speed of the actual chat is now at a lightning pace.... which can totally 'drown' the newbie. 

I know. I know. Who knew? 

The best news is that we have an archive version for you to read at your leisure. 

Here's last week's chat, where the spotlight was on DIFFERENTIATION. 
You can read and click through to all of the links! 

Big shout out to Kim from "Educator's Spin on It" for her editing powers! 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Dr. Jean: Mentor and Moments -- NCaeyc

Dr. Jean Inspiration through the eyes of Debbie Clement at RainbowsWithinReach

This is my 19th year of happy-music-lady-wearing-polka-dots-

This is also my sixth year of blogging and sharing my travels, experiences and insights. I am making a conscientious effort to do a better job of 'reporting' from the amazing places I get to experience. This past weekend was my 31st state for a professional presentation!!! Yeah, North Carolina! You're with the majority now! 
Which makes me so happy!!!!! 

Friday. Dateline: Raleigh, NC. 
Raleigh Convention Center.

That's me playing my own version of "Where's Waldo." 
I like to call it "Defining Debbie." 
Did you 'find' me? 

The public art in the building was seriously AWESOME! 

Now here's a sneak peak into my first workshop presentation. 
We are discussing {and acting out} 
the concept of "proprioception." 
We are freezing frozen, working on balance 
and learning where our bodies are in space: 

Do you think it looks like some amazing early childhood professionals live in North Carolina? I'd be happy to let my WonderPeeps in any of these classrooms! 

It 'used' to be I was over-the-moon when a participant left feedback on Facebook. 
Sometimes there would be a happy post to my personal page, and occasionally folks would make their post to my FB Fanpage! 
BTW. I just hit 5,000 followers over there! [I have to give a whole big bunch of thanks to my daughter for helping me keep that network 'alive' and growing. TY Sarah!]

I think this is the first TWEET where someone has given a shout-out! 
From a conference. With a picture anyhow.
How awesome is that?

Glad that I'm growing on Twitter, too! 

My goal for the conference was to get a picture with Dr. JEAN! 
Immediately after my presentation on Music and Movement, 
after I am ab.so.lute.ly melted, I leapt at the opportunity.

This was just moments before her conference keynote. 
Can you spell: standing-room-only?  

Dr. Jean and Debbie Clement: Together at NCaeyc in Raleigh

I was DILIGENT in taking notes while Dr. Jean spoke. 
I have three specific 'take-aways' for you. 

Here's number 1! 
"In our efforts to give children the things we never had....let us remember to give them the things we DID have." ~~ Dr. Jean

Dr. Jean told the poignant story of asking her graduating kindergarten grandson if he had gotten to play "Farmer in the Dell" during his kindergarten year. 

His answer? "What's a dell?" 
No he had not. 
Dr. Jean went on at length about giving children what we DID have growing up: 
Experiences. Songs. Rhymes. Finger plays. 

She spoke of our need to help the pendulum swing back to play. 
She received resounding applause! 

The title of Dr. Jean's keynote? 

"Kids Just Wanna Have Fun (And teachers do, too!)
There were 1200 people in attendance. 
Everyone got two paper plates.  
You do the math! 
Now imagine Cyndi Lauper's pop-rock track thundering. 
Dr. Jean had 'all the smart people' standing. 
She led paper-plate aerobics. 
Crossing the midline. 
Following directions. 
Positional words. 

Dr. Jean Take-Away #2: 
"Learning takes place on your feet, not your seat!" ~~Dr. Jean 

I know. I know. I'm a "music-lady"........... 
but I was an elementary school Art Teacher first! 
Fine motor and Fine Arts go hand in hand. 
I have FIFTY articles on my thoughts on that matter. 

Here's the Golden Anniversary Summary Issue Article

50 Editions of Fine Motor Meets Fine Arts at RainbowsWithinReach

Thanks for your support! I am so appreciative of your pins!

Thanks for your support! I am so appreciative of your pins!
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