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Volume 2 Number 7

Harry & Rosemary Wong say, "The effective teacher thinks, reflects, and implements." Read along this month with the Wongs and find out ways effective teachers use their cumulative knowledge to solve the most persistent problems....
Effective Teaching by Harry & Rosemary Wong
Promoting Learning by Marv Marshall
4 Blocks by Cheryl Sigmon
School Psychologist by Beth Bruno
Busy Educator's Monthly 5
Find Online Degree Programs
Around the Block With...
"When Will We Use This?"
Reasonable Rules & Persistence
Thanksgiving Gratitude
CUE 2001: Happiest Place on Earth
Integration: A Rewarding Experience
Peace Corps Is More Than A Job
George Lucas Teacher Prep Series
Fish, Photograph & Release Contest
National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign
Planetary Society Launches Pluto Campaign
Upcoming Ed Conferences
Humor from the Classroom
Letters to the Editor
New in the Lesson Bank
Help Wanted - Teaching Jobs
Gazette Home Delivery:

About Jay Davidson...
Jay Davidson is a first grade teacher in San Francisco, California. He is the author of Teach Your Children Well: A Teacher's Advice for Parents, which is available for $12.95 at

Visit Jay's website:

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Teach Your Children Well: A Teacher's Advice for Parents
by Jay Davidson

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Teacher Feature...
Thanksgiving 2001: Thoughts about Gratitude
by Jay Davidson

This is a sign I saw for the first time in San Francisco on October 6, 2001: AMERICA - OPEN FOR BUSINESS. The graphic is an American flag with shopping bag handles on the top of it. The message, as I interpret it, is that when we really want to get out of the national depression that was caused by the World Trade Center tragedy just one month before, we do what any patriotic American really ought to do --- we go shopping. Thatís where the term "retail therapy" comes from, isnít it?

My concern is with the implied message that this is sending to our children. This approach is teaching them that happiness can be purchased. Feeling good depends on having the right new shoes, the watch that goes with the outfit, the latest hairstyle.

No wonder people have confused the concepts of "need" and "want." Everything they want is something that they "need." They need it to fit in, to be respected, to be in with the in crowd.

Kids are masterful at zeroing in on what they donít have and what they think they have to get. Thanksgiving is a good time to challenge that line of thinking - to help them appreciate what they have rather than mourn what they are missing. Since parents have been on the planet much longer, you have a wider perspective than then children. This is a good time to share your wisdom with your little ones.

Every household chore is an opportunity to serve as a reminder of appreciation. While washing the dishes, focus on gratitude for the meal just eaten, the family members with whom we shared it, and the kitchen in which it was prepared. While making the bed, be grateful for the bed itself. Doing the laundry makes me think about having a selection of clothes to clean, as well as the family members who wear each item. Children will not necessarily see these connections; it is up to us to point them out.

We have a choice about how we look at our lives. I choose to focus on what I have, as opposed to what I want. When we think about what we have, we always have enough. When we think about what we want, we never have enough.

Jay Davidson is also the author of "Teach Your Children Well: A First Grade Teacher's Advice for Parents" (available at

Visit for more information about Jay Davidson.