Archive for May, 2011

private school versus public school

Public or Private School? What is Better?

Comparing Private School with Public School Education

As my daughter nears middle school, my husband and I have started to wonder…public or private school?   Private school is not something we ever contemplated for our children.  We live in a great public school system and both of us graduated proudly from public school systems in California which were not as good as the school system we currently attend. Read more…

girl reading with dog golden labrador author Karen L Day caught in the act of reading Pragmatic Mom

Kids Caught in the Act … of READING!

Getting Kids Reading

Yikes, I am almost out of pics of kids caught in the act of reading!!! Please, please, please take pity on me and send more to pragmaticmom.com@gmail.com. Thank you! Read more…

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What Not To Say In an Interview

How to Blow a Job Interview

This gem is from the Wall Street Journal. I have to say that as someone who has been in the staffing business for a billion years (and I actually have interviewed more than 1000 people!) that an interview should be a conversation! Let me say that again: AN INTERVIEW SHOULD BE A CONVERSATION. Granted that the interviewer needs to be skillful at making this an interview versus checking off a list of routine questions, but it’s your job, too, as the interviewee, to make this an interesting conversation for both of you. Read more…

The Gingerbread Man, SAT Vocabulary in Picture Books, best picture books for vocabulary

SAT Vocabulary Words from Picture Book The Gingerbread Man

Picture Books that Build Vocabulary

The words for Week 9 are from the picture book, The Gingerbread Man by Jim Aylesworth and Barbara McClintock. It turns out that my son has “Text Talk” at school and this is the source of all the SAT Vocabulary Words for Kindergarteners. They read a picture book and then talk about the “big words.” Picture books are great sources for not only gorgeous artwork, a complete story with a beginning, middle and end in about 36 pages, but rich language!! Did I mention that I LOVE picture books?! Read more…

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Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Best Gifts for Dads on Father’s Day

I completely missed the boat to post on gift ideas for Mother’s Day this year. I’m not sure exactly what happened but I did manage to send off cards and some books to my mother, mother-in-law, and a dear relative that we call G-G-M (Great Grandma Mary) but only barely made it via First Class U.S. Postal Service. Still, when Mother’s Day rolls around every year, I always think that it’s all about me so I do a sorry job at procuring gifts! One year we failed to plan ahead such that my husband had to fed ex cards to our moms for an overnight Saturday delivery. Oops! And year after year, it’s the same story. Read more…

Top 6: Best Golf Books for Dads

Best Golf Books for Dads from a Scratch Golfer

To coincide with the holy grail of the Master’s Tournament, my husband suggested these books for the golf nut in your life.  Could make a nice Father’s Day gift for later as well.  He qualifies.   He thinks it’s a crime against humanity if he’s not playing golf on a decent day;  he plays to a zero handicap; and he has amassed a huge collection of golf books and claims to have read every single one.  These are his favorites.  If you become a golf widow every spring like I do, your only recourse is to take up the game of golf.  And be sure to send your kids out to the course with your golf nut.  The kids love it.  They get to drive the cart, eat a hotdog outside, hit balls, play with the reseeding mixture, play with golf tees, and hang with their golf nut who would otherwise be absentee.  They learn great etiquette on the course and improve their eye/hand coordination as a bonus gift. Read more…

Race to Nowhere PragmaticMom Pragmatic Mom

Are We Racing to Nowhere in My Town or Yours?

A Race to Nowhere Here Where We Live?

I finally saw Race to Nowhere. My friend, Capability:Mom, was helping to pack the theater for Families First‘s fundraiser. They do such good work that it’s hard not to support them! My Mom Friend of 6 kids is on their Board and she did a lovely introduction before the movie started. Families First provides free workshops to low-income parents to help them be the best parents they can be. They brought in psychologist Catherine Steiner-Adair to speak afterwards and she, we all agreed, was the best part of the evening. Read more…

Teach Me Tuesday Korean A Single Shard Linda Sue Park PragmaticMom Pragmatic Mom Celadon Asian Pottery

Discovering Korea for Kids with Kids’ Books, Art and Food

Exploring Korea through Books for Kids, Celadon Pottery, Chosun Chests and More!

This was my second pilgrimage to the Brimfield Antique Flea Market with Sharon Schindler Photography and Capability:Mom. Sharon is there to shoot and shop. She shot some amazing vintage photographs there last year and Capability:Mom has the Ball Jars photo on her kitchen wall. This year they both scored blue-y tinged vintage Ball Jars for a song, a purchase that was made sweeter when we found out that the rest of the vintage jars there were much more expensive! Read more…

Top 10: Best Chapter Books for Summer Reading (Incoming Grades 3-5)

Best Chapter Books for Kids

If your elementary school is like my elementary school, kids entering grades 3-5 need to read 5 or so books during the summer (and do a book project on one of the books).  It’s not normally a struggle to get my kids to read 5 books during the summer except for the selection of the books because the summertime reading has to be especially engaging to compete for their time!  These 10 chapter books should do the trick!! Read more…