background img

The importance of music in schools

When we hear about music and other art programs in our school curriculum, most of us are guilty of putting it aside. For example, the focus is then put on the basic or standard studies in schools such as reading, writing and arithmetic. Little do a lot of us know that the importance of including music in that list is as crucial as the others.

Programs are being cut from school budgets at an alarming rate to save money, i.e. physical education, art and music classes. There is already a whole generation of teachers and parents who haven’t had the advantages of arts in their own education. Many teachers don’t know how to include any kind of art in their teaching these days and parents don’t know how to ask for it.

Studies have shown that including musical studies such as learning to play an instrument or class sing-alongs and even drama have impacted the way children learn and
Read more: The importance of music in schools – The Denver Post

Colorado gets $1 million to study lengthening school days

Nine schools in four metro-area Colorado school districts will lengthen school days to 6 p.m. and be put under a microscope to see how effective longer days are to student success, thanks to a million-dollar grant from a nonprofit education organization.

The $1 million Colorado received from the nonprofit National Center on Time and Learning Monday will go to studying how well the longer school day works and implementing the extra time at the nine schools in Adams County, Boulder Valley, Denver Public Schools and Jefferson County to boosting student achievement.

Denver voters pass three tax proposals including measures 3A and 3B

Denver voters again have opened up their wallets to support the city and schools — approving ballot measures to raise taxes for more police, longer library hours, school renovations and classroom enrichment programs.

“The Denver voters have proven with good information they will make wise decisions about their city’s future,” said Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, celebrating the apparent passage of the city’s request to raise property taxes. “I am a proud Denverite tonight.”

As of late Tuesday, with 70 percent of active voters’ ballots counted, all three of the city’s ballot initiatives were passing by significant margins. The Denver Post projected wins for each measure.

Five failing schools to lose money supposed to help them improve

The Colorado Department of Education will cut off school-improvement money to five of the state’s poorest-performing schools because they haven’t gotten better despite the influx of cash.

The schools — Gilpin Montessori elementary, in Denver’s Curtis Park neighborhood, and four middle schools in Pueblo — received money for two years of three-year federal School Improvement Grants. The grants are given to states to help some of the country’s lowest-achieving schools improve.

The schools were notified this month that their grants won’t be renewed for a third year.

Got an elevated learner? Attend the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) Convention in Denver

In just a few weeks, thousands classroom teachers, gifted/talented coordinators, school administrators, researchers, parents, college and university faculty, and more, will descend on Denver for the 59th Annual National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) Convention, November 15-18, 2012.

You’re invited to join us to elevate learning, and ensure that our nation’s brightest learners are challenged as they reach their personal best in the classroom and beyond. Centered around the theme “Educating with Altitude: Reaching Beyond the Summit”, the pre-convention events, concurrent sessions, poster sessions, exhibit hall, general sessions, and networking events (both formal and informal!) will harness the power of diverse viewpoints – from the field and from the classroom.

Ready to register now? Go here.

In addition, limited space is still available for exhibitors. Numerous activities are scheduled for the exhibit hall, from Exhibitor Workshops, Student Entertainment, Student Art and Posters to the opening reception on Thursday and morning and afternoon coffee breaks each day. The exhibit dates are Thursday, November 15 through Saturday, November 17 at the Colorado Convention Center. Click Here for the Exhibit Brochure.

Why You Should Vote Yes and Support School Bond and Mill Levies This November

At one time in my life I was a DINK – Dual Income No Kids and was asked to vote on a tax increase on my newly purchased home. I mentioned to someone at work that I was voting no on the school bond issue because I didn’t have kids yet and didn’t want to increase my taxes. I was already stunned by the property taxes and costs associated with my new home.

My co-worker, who also did not have children at the time, jumped on me and explained that the schools are what hold up a community. You don’t pay taxes for education to support YOUR own children in the district, you pay them to support EVERYONE. Great schools increase property values, decrease crime, encourage families and other residents to stay and be engaged in the community. They also educate children for future positions in the community such as doctors, lawyers, teachers, and business people. Children return to their childhood home area to raise their children IF there are solid education opportunities available.

Fun activities and healthy snacks for your school’s Halloween party!

Once again, I am taking the easy way out.

Juice boxes.

That’s what I signed up to bring to my fifth grade daughter’s classroom Halloween party. In fact, this may be her last. They don’t dress up and eat treats in middle school, do they?

Anyway, more props to you if you are the mom or dad bringing snazzy treats and mind-bendingly creative craft and game ideas to your child’s classroom.

Mama Drama: 3rd Anniversary Advice Round Up

It’s October, which means falling leaves, Halloween, and the 3rd Anniversary of our Mama Drama advice column. We’ve rounded up and sorted out the advice over this last year so it’s easy to find what you need. Bookmark it and send it to your mama friends!

(photo credit)

Keep the questions coming ( and remember the more we ask, the smarter we get at navigating this amazing journey called Motherhood.

Daily Routines

Ending Morning Madness

Cash incentives for Colorado students a study in progress

There’s a reward waiting for Moises Banuelos if he passes the standardized tests in three Advanced Placement classes he’s taking this semester at Denver’s Abraham Lincoln High School: $100 for each qualifying score.

“It shows that hard work pays off,” said Banuelos, 16, who hopes to receive the money from a program channeled through the Colorado Legacy Foundation. “If you really study your butt off and get a good turn out, it should be recognized with an incentive.”

As educators continue to debate the effectiveness — or even the propriety — of using financial rewards to boost academic achievement, Colorado has moved forward, and the National Math and Science Initiative-backed program soon will operate in 30 schools.

It aims to increase

Mama Drama: Responding to Rudeness from Other People’s Kids

Dear Mama Drama:

I’ve had a few experiences with rude children that have stumped me. I don’t really know how to deal with other people’s kids who are disrespectful. Where is the line?

(photo credit)

One was a teenager who had parked across three parking spaces in our church parking lot. I politely asked him to move his car but he gave me lip and refused. Imagine how mortified he was when he learned our religion classes were combining that day and he had to sit through my lesson.

Another was a student in my daughter’s second grade class who was being really mean to her about something she didn’t agree with. Fine. But then this girl started going off on ME! I couldn’t believe she’d dare to do it to an adult.

~Disbelieving Mama