Author Archives: Joan Lange

Books of Hope and Resilience

“Hope” is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul, and sings the tune without the words, and never stops at all.                                    … Continue reading

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Weaving Literature into Science: Novel Engineering

“You have been my friend. That in itself is a tremendous thing.  I wove my webs for you because I liked you….By helping you, perhaps I was trying to lift up my life a trifle. Heaven knows anyone’s life can … Continue reading

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Take a Reading Field Trip

“History is more than war and politics; it is literature, the arts, engineering…above all, history is human.” This quote is a constant refrain in David McCullough’s recent book, The American Spirit: Who We Are and What We Stand For, which is a … Continue reading

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Teaching Empathy with Primary Sources

“They never saw a child.” Ruby Bridges It was my first reading of The Watson’s Go to Birmingham–1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis, and I was fascinated by the book’s structure: most of the book is not about Civil Rights, but … Continue reading

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Judging a Book by Its Cover

Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.  Voltaire “Judging a book by its cover” has the negative connotation of shallow perceptions and narrow-mindedness; however, in a recent Design Principles unit, 7th and 8th grade students examined cover … Continue reading

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The Rule of Three: Making Stories Memorable

  Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.    Mark Twain   Don’t be mislead by the Mark Twain quote; this article is not a commentary about political elections, but rather, … Continue reading

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“Escape the Room” with Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

Like a happy reunion with a childhood friend, re-reading a classic children’s book provides an opportunity to celebrate fond memories while also making new connections. An opportunity arose to reconnect with the 1968 Newbery winner, From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, as … Continue reading

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Physical Space + Thinking = Cultures of Learning

At the STLinSTL summer institute hosted by MICDS, I attended a fascinating session by Ron Ritchhart, co-author of Making Thinking Visible.  Ritchhart’s recent book, Creating Cultures of Thinking: The 8 Forces We Must Master to Truly Transform Our Schools, provided … Continue reading

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Creating Presentations That Resonate

Are you zombified by student PowerPoint presentations and a bit dizzy after viewing spinning Prezis? This year I have been rethinking the librarian’s role as literacy expert.  Whether you use the term media literacy, digital literacy, data literacy, or New … Continue reading

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Putting the “I” in Books: Students Innovating iBooks

A summer conference session on iBooks at Lausanne Learning Institute inspired a collaborative challenge between our high school library and Chelsy Hooper, the technology integrator of a middle school: How could students at Pope John Paul II High School creatively teach … Continue reading

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