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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

How do you pronuncificate that?

Is it just me, or does it bug anyone else when somebody says "Valentime's Day?"

Let me put the emphasis on that -- Valen TIMES Day...

Just curious.

On another note entirely, I wanted to post a short review about a fellow blogger's book which she sent me back around Thanksgiving.

Angela Powell has written a book called The Cornerstone: Classroom Management That Makes Teaching More Effective, Efficient, and Enjoyable. She also runs a web site and blog which can be reached by going to

The first thing that I noticed about Angela's book is that it is huge! Weighing in at almost 500 pages (standard letter size, no less!), the book could literally serve as a classroom's cornerstone. But kidding aside, there's way too much valuable information inside to not keep it readily available on the bookshelf.

The Cornerstone is a handy reference guide for new and veteran teachers alike. There are tips, techniques, strategies, and actual anecdotes on a variety of topics, including behavior management, classroom organization, and developing and using routines.

I should state that I have not yet read the entire book. That's one of the great things about it though, is that you don't have to start at page one and read through to the back cover. Upon perusing the table of contents, the first thing that struck my fancy was Chapter 9: How to Teach Any Procedure. As I read through Angela's advice and stories from experience, I alternated between thoughts of, "Yeah, I already do that, and it works pretty well," and, "That sounds intriguing; I ought to give that a try!"

The only downside I have noted is that the photographs, showing implementations of the strategy suggested in the book, are black and white as opposed to color photographs. I fully understand the reason for this -- color photographs significantly raise the cost of printing each book -- but the pictures lose a bit in black and white.

Nevertheless, the upside far outweighs this minor downside, and I highly recommend The Cornerstone to teachers of all levels. For all of us that turn back to The First Days of School by Harry Wong in late August, The Cornerstone by Angela Powell makes a fine companion piece.


Angela Watson said...

Thanks for the review. Love the comment about the book serving as the actual, literal cornerstone of a classroom. HAH! Where were you when I was designing the back cover copy?

Unknown said...

yes, "Valen Times" bothers me too, but, as an art teacher, the one that drives me nuts is "crowns" (you know, those waxy sticks in paper wrappers that you color with).

Melissa B. said...

ValenTIMES doesn't bother me as much as Li-berry. Good review!

Anonymous said...

Valentimes only bothers me when the speaker is over 8 or 9. I had several kindergartners say it to me today and it was precious. When the teacher at my literacy meeting said it, I cringed.

Anonymous said...

As long as we're on the subject, how about "anyways"?
Anyways, I liked the comments about liberry and that valentimes coming from an adult makes one want to silly-slap the evildoer.
This website is crazy and well worth further viewing. Love the video promoting your book. I will be in contact with you when my novel comes out about the amazing adventures of a veteran middle school teacher. The first chapter can be previewed at
I invite you and all your many readers to check it out when you get a free minute. Take care. Tom