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An Ideal Gift

An Ideal Gift!

It costs not a penny!  It’s so easy, and…

it fills everyone (teacher included!) with very genial feelings!

Perfect at this time of year—

Give your students the gift of a mentor!

Role Model Program can be a stunning success in various phases. 

In a previous post, I explained a peer tutoring program using students 2 grade levels higher: Learning Lessons from Students,

and in my March Madness post, I described an activity using high school basketball stars.

But these were just part of my Role Model Program.

I also encouraged successful, adult members of the local community, most of whom had been in the same desks and walked the same halls of our schools, to drop into our class. When I encountered them at sports games, school board meetings, or award ceremonies, I often cajoled them into visits. When they came, they read stories, discussed their careers, and answered questions. I hoped they would inspire my students to work hard in school and to achieve better lives. I believe my students were genuinely affected by these visits.

My kids had NO idea of the many possible careers available to them. When I asked what they wanted to be when they grew up, a few mentioned their parents’ occupations. Others said the usual: football player, policeman, teacher. I found this to be true at all grade levels that I taught (1-12).

I invited a chef, a pre-school aide, a pilot, a high school football player, a scientist, a lawyer, a musician, a plumber. (The students’ eyes grew ever larger as he unfolded, and unfolded, and unfolded, the directions for installing a water heater—reading skills are necessary, even for a plumber! I know he probably knew how to do it without the directions, but I insisted that he bring them for motivation.)

Here are pictures of some visits:




When Captain Brett visited my class, the other teachers asked who the handsome pilot was. Even they were surprised when I told them he was a former struggling reader. He read The Glorious Flight: Across the Channel with Louis Bleriot, by Alice Provenson, and shared stories and showed plans and maps that he used in his job. A scientist (my daughter Lisa) shared her lab equipment and discussed lab activities; lawyer Marti Vinci showed us his legal briefs and his trumpet.

Because so many young people have no idea of the varied and interesting careers available to them, Grammar Stories: Careers (Grades 6-12) includes descriptions of more than one hundred different occupations in six different fields. The stories are  combined with practice for the most common grammatical errors. Students might find them interesting, useful, and inspiring!


The set is located here:


Here are some other interesting posts about education from my friends at TBOTEMC:


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