Friday, August 30, 2013

Goldie Blox Makes Engineering Accessible for Girls

During her time at Stanford, Debbie Sterling, an engineering student, couldn't help but notice that she and her female peers were vastly outnumbered. Most other women just didn't seem to be interested in engineering, and her classes were dominated by men. Out in the workplace, the statistics were equally grim: Sterling learned that 89% of engineering positions were held by men. Sterling had a hunch that capturing girls’ interest in building through toys that develop spatial skills might lead more girls to become interested in technical fields down the road. She began to do some research and discovered that while boys tend to demonstrate an interest in building things, girls tend to like books and stories. Sterling decided to combine the two ideas, and Goldie Blox was born.

Each Goldie Blox set contains a toolkit and a book starring Goldie, a girl who loves to build. Girls read the book and build along with Goldie as she strives to build a simple machine to help her dog Nacho, who loves to chase his tail. From this basic idea, Goldie (followed by her avid reader) expands on the machine until all of Goldie’s friends are in on the action, too. The story prompts girls to experiment with the included crank and axles as they work to build a belt drive, all brought to life by the fun, zany plot in the book.

Goldie Blox

This Parents’ Choice Award-winning toy, best for girls ages six and up, is available in stores or from the Goldie Blox website. The concept is new and so far there is only one set available, but with publications like The Atlantic, NBC, Forbes, Time, Wired, Parenting, and The Huffington Post covering Goldie, it seems reasonable to look for sequels in which Goldie will put her engineering mind to work in other adventures.

You go, girls!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Three Tips to Help Make Homework Time Easier

As the school year begins, it's time to think about all the issues your family encountered with homework last year -- and finally take steps to improve things. No one says homework is going to become an easy or pleasant part of family life, but there are things you can do to make it go more smoothly. Here are a few of our favorite suggestions:


Know the Assignment
There are many reasons a student may not know their homework assignment. Some students have trouble copying accurately from the board. Others can't keep good track of their papers and lose the sheet on which the homework was printed. Still others have handwriting issues and even if they write down the assignment, they can't read their own writing when they sit down to work. If your child consistently has any one of these issues, work with their teacher to make sure they have an alternative way of getting their assignments. Some students work with a homework buddy, others need to show their teacher that they have their worksheets packed in their bag before they leave class. Whatever the system, find one that works. Knowing what to do is the first step in getting the work done.

Homework Needs a Home Office
Think about the kind of space you need when you bring home a project from work. Homework is part of a student's job and he or she needs a dedicated space to work. It can be one end of the dining room table, a desk in their room, or anyplace else in the house. It needs to have a place nearby to store books and long term projects, as well as to be equipped with age-appropriate supplies -- markers and glue, a computer with internet access for research, and access to a printer.

A home office also needs to have an office-like atmosphere. That doesn't always mean silence -- we know that some students (and adults) prefer to work with music in the background. But it does mean that there is no television or computer on, except as needed for research and word processing. This may be impossible to enforce for older students who work in their rooms, but younger students can learn the importance of separating work from recreation if parents model this by their own behavior. Hopefully, good work habits learned early will continue on through high school.

Create a "Launching Pad" for Your Child
Knowing the assignment and doing the homework are only the first parts of the process; your child needs to bring it back to school. Creating a dedicated space for each child to hold all the items he or she needs for the next school day will make sure that homework wasn't done in vain. The launching pad is also a way to ensure that your student has all of his or her other required school items. It should be the place for permission slips, books, gym attire, and anything else that needs to go to school. Ideally, a basket or shelf big enough to hold their backpack can be dedicated to each child. As homework is completed, books are read, and permission slips signed, they can all be placed inside the backpack and the pack then goes back on the launching pad, to be taken to school, fully loaded, the next day.

No one loves doing homework, but planning and organization can make it easier for all.

Friday, August 23, 2013

August Health Observances

Two month-long reminders about children's health take place in August, both intended to coincide with the start of the school year.

National Immunization Awareness Month

First, this month marks the annual National Immunization Awareness Month, and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) reminds parents that "August is an ideal time to make sure everyone is up-to-date on vaccines before heading back to school and to plan ahead to receive flu vaccines." The AAP notes that some parents have concerns or questions about immunizations, and their website includes information on every aspect of immunization from school vaccination requirements in all 50 states to vaccine safety. They recognize the importance of getting accurate information about immunizations and note that the "AAP Immunization Web site was assessed by the World Health Organization (WHO) and passed their credibility and good information criteria."

Children's Vision and Learning Month

Ano Lobb
August is also Children’s Vision and Learning Month. As the New Jersey Society of Optometric Physicians states, "Children with undiagnosed, untreated vision problems ... can experience trouble focusing between a book or electronic device and the blackboard, or controlling or coordinating eye movements. In today’s digital classroom, a student must see well to not only keep up but to excel." We could not agree more -- and it is because of these important connections between eyesight and learning that vision screening is a routine component of a comprehensive educational evaluation at The Yellin Center. Further, we believe that regular exams with a pediatric ophthalmologist (a medical doctor who specializes in the eye issues of children) should be a part of your child's medical care.

Here's to a healthy start of school for all!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Back-to-School Tips for Teachers

Photo: audio-lucie-store-it
While students around the country probably have a few days -- or a couple of weeks -- remaining of their summer vacation,  most teachers have started back to school well in advance of their students. These first days back generally include scheduled meetings, but this is also the time that teachers can take advantage of the calm of student-free days to set up their classroom and finish their preparations for the coming year. There are many helpful websites with back-to-school suggestions for teachers. Here are a few that we recommend.

The National Education Association website has resources geared especially for new teachers, including advice on setting up the classroom, dealing with parents, and a list of supplies that every teacher should have on hand. Some of these tips will likely be useful for veteran teachers, as well.

Are you planning a classroom project that requires special supplies? Or are you teaching in an economically disadvantaged area where even basic classroom items are lacking? Take a look at Donors Choose, where "Public school teachers post classroom project requests which range from pencils for poetry to microscopes for mitochondria." These requests are listed on the website and donors can select a project to fund. When the funding goal for a particular request is met, the materials are shipped to the classroom. The site states that they are able to successfully fund 70% of teacher requests. Note that Donors Choose does not accept "in kind" donations but includes links to sites that do.

LD Online has a list of "to-do" items for special education teachers, but we think one item on that list should be a must for all teachers -- ask if any of your students have an IEP or 504 plan. Make sure you have ready access to a copy of this plan, important for all students but potentially life-saving for a student who has a 504 plan because of a medical condition or allergy. For reasons we have never understood, some schools keep these documents locked away with the guidance office, nurse, or elsewhere. Privacy laws do not require this and, in fact, all special education laws (IDEA and Section 504) require that these documents be provided to teachers who will be charged with implementing them. Read this document, know what the student needs and what is required in the classroom.

Whether or not you have already started your school year, we wish you a good one. And if you have a few days yet before you go back, we hope you enjoy the rest of your summer vacation!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

SparkCharts for Previewing and Review

While you are pulling together this year's school supplies (for yourself or your student) you might want to consider adding SparkCharts -- from the same folks who bring you SparkNotes --  to your list.

SparkNotes have long been the love of many a student and the bane of many an English teacher. Their literature summaries and character/plot/symbol analyses are well-written, thorough, and spot on. While reading SparkNotes is never a substitute for reading a book or play, the resources on the site can be great study tools for students who need to preview the information in a text or review it after reading to ensure they understood the critical points. SparkNotes  also offers study tools for various standardized tests and for other academic subjects, like chemistry or U.S. history.

For students in high school, college, and graduate/professional programs, SparkCharts cover topics that go well beyond the offerings of SparkNotes. 

SparkCharts are sturdy, laminated charts that can be stored in a binder or taped next to a desk to display just about all the critical information one could need to know about a subject. Topics are diverse and include the nervous system, art history, C++, organic chemistry, macroeconomics, Latin grammar, civil procedure, and calculus, so older students are almost sure to find a chart applicable to them.

How to Use Them:

SparkCharts are wonderful tools for some of the most effective, but neglected, steps in learning: previewing and reviewing.


Before attempting to tackle a new topic, students who preview the material are able to set the stage for solid learning. Watching a video about the material to be studied or reading a summary are both great ways to preview, and a SparkChart provides another readily accessible source of information. Before going to class or opening a textbook to their assigned reading, students should find the corresponding section on the SparkChart and read over it, all the while reflecting on what they already know about this topic from other classes or their everyday lives. A quick preview can set a student up for optimal learning by helping them discern which ideas are most important as they listen to a lecture or read a chapter.


After finishing class or closing the textbook, students should attempt to answer questions, go over notes, or make a concept map of the material they have learned. A SparkChart would be a great tool for this kind of review, as students can access not only the information they have just learned, but also pertinent, previously learned information. A wise student might make up questions based on the information found on a SparkChart and quiz himself on the material.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Research Supports Benefits of Inclusion for All Students

A recent Wall Street Journal article by Miriam Kurtzig Freedman, an attorney representing schools, raises questions about the practice called mainstreaming or inclusion, which places students with learning disabilities in mainstream classrooms along with typically-learning peers. A special education teachers works alongside a regular teacher in these classrooms to address the needs of the special education students. Here in New York City, these Collaborative Team Teaching -- CTT -- classes are quite common. Although inclusion has been generally used to refer to students with any kind of disability, Ms. Freedman focuses her analysis on students with learning issues, so we will limit our discussion to this kind of inclusion as well.

Photo: dave_mcmt
Freedman notes," Look into the research on inclusion and you will find that this policy is generally based on notions of civil rights and social justice, not on "best education practices" for all students." She goes on to state that there is no research on how inclusion impacts the academic progress of the typical learners and that parents of typical learners simply remove their children from public schools rather than complain about what Ms. Freedman describes as "simplified" teaching in inclusion settings.She notes that this impacts the goal of diversity in classrooms. "Can this be anything but very bad for America?," she asks.

Our colleagues at COPAA, the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, have fired back, in a blog post by Denise Marshall, the Executive Director of COPAA. Ms. Marshall notes: "The article by Ms. Freedman wholly disregards both the law and science. Her erroneous proposition that educating children with disabilities alongside their non-disabled peers is harmful to students without disabilities has no basis in science nor legal precedents. Not only is this claim based on stereotype, but this viewpoint disregards decades of legal and scientific developments and undercuts a quarter of a century of progress in remedying widespread discrimination against children with disabilities."

Ms. Marshall is correct; research supports the conclusion that all students do better in an inclusion setting. In fact, despite the concerns of teachers about managing a diverse classroom, there are numerous benefits -- both social and academic -- in such settings. Ms. Marshall concludes that Ms. Freedman  "is correct in stating that our schools thrive with a diverse population and engaged parents. However, the idea that removing children with disabilities from regular classrooms will promote diversity, defies comprehension. A return to segregation and exclusion of children with disabilities will hardly promote diversity and is definitely not the way forward.."

We agree.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

An Experiment in Being "Test Flexible"

We've written before about the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, usually referred to as Fairtest. Fairtest's website includes lists of colleges that are SAT/ACT optional and can be a helpful resource for students who believe that their scores on these exams don't reflect their real abilities.

Brandeis University in Massachusetts, one of the schools on the Fairtest list, has taken an interesting approach to what they call being "test flexible". As described by the University, students applying to Brandeis can choose to submit a combination of scores in subject tests, or an academic portfolio that includes a sample of analytical writing and an additional teacher evaluation. However, even students who don't submit traditional SAT/ACT tests will be asked for these scores after they matriculate. After two years, the Brandeis Senate will decide, based upon the success of the text flexible admitted students, whether to change, expand, or eliminate this program.

Brandeis University, by Hannah Rosen

Andrew Flagel, who heads up student enrollment at the school, is quoted in a Brandeis newsletter as noting, “This is an evolutionary change, since we already strive to de-emphasize the role of standardized tests in our admissions decisions through the careful evaluation of high school program and grades, recommendation letters, interview reports, and other ‘non-cognitive’ factors.” He further noted that this research based approach to test flexible admissions allows the University to maintain its high academic standards while giving students control over how their application will be evaluated. 

We will be interested to see how this experiment in having students decide how to best "package" themselves for admission will turn out. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Getting Ready for School

Anyone who has walked into a store, turned on a television, or opened a newspaper over the past several weeks has been bombarded with the message -- school is about to begin and it's time to think about school supplies.
Rebecca Kohn

We've written several blogs about this subject over the past few years, and thought it might be time to look at them again. We were please to see that they are still timely, and that the products recommended and the strategies we suggest remain helpful.

Helpful Apps

Whether your student is an advanced math scholar in need of a low-cost version of a graphing calculator, or a beginning reader who will enjoy a "kiddie Kindle", take a look at our blog on Apps for Students.

School Supplies

We've got recommendations for low tech items, like folders, binders, and pen and pencil holders for students who need help with graphomotor issues.

Tips for College Students

We have a number of suggestions for college students, including the Livescribe pen, which turns spoken words, such as lectures, into computer compatible notes. We have an entire blog post on this tool, which we often recommend to students with challenges with handwriting, memory, or organization.

We have also written about products and strategies specifically for college freshmen, including how to manage medication, when to apply for accommodations, and how to file papers. Our favorite tip for college students -- and one that is useful for families and for younger students as well -- is the white board. Whether it is set up in a dorm room, in the bedroom of a high school student,  in the family kitchen, or by the front door, a large white board is a terrific organizational tool. Try it for listing items to be taken to school or work, to track long and short term projects, and to allow family members (or roommates) to share messages. Many of these boards are magnetic; this will allow you to use magnetic clips to keep urgent papers, notes, and receipts readily at hand.

Having the right tools -- whether high tech or low -- will help every student get off to a good start.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Recommended Reads: A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly

We pick up our Recommended Reads series, which reviews books or series written for children or young adults, with Jennifer Donnelly's A Northern Light, a mystery based upon real-life events. 

Grades: 7 – 10; may be of more interest to young women

Awards: Carnegie Medal (United Kingdom), Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Borders Original Voices Award, Printz Award Runner Up

Adult Themes: A few references to sexuality and some intermittent cursing, all relatively mild – our heroine is a good Victorian-era girl.

Plot: The summer of 1906 presents Mattie Gokey with a great deal of uncertainty. On one hand, she wants nothing more than to attend Barnard College and use her considerable talents to write stories and books. On the other hand, she’s tied to her father’s farm in upstate New York, where she must help him with the work and care for her younger sisters after her mother’s death. To complicate matters, handsome Royal Loomis has started courting her, and though he seems wrong for her in many ways, she’s tickled by his attention. Marrying him is an attractive prospect, but it would mean forgoing Barnard. And Mattie is horrified by the grinding responsibilities her friend Minnie endures as the young mother of infant twins who must also cook and clean for her husband and his hired workers. The prospect of domestic life is bleak. On the other hand, her reading, coupled with her relationship with her subversive teacher, lead her to wonder whether being a female author is much more attractive than the being a housewife on a farm. When Mattie takes a job at a nearby summer resort to help her father buy a mule, a guest named Grace hands Mattie a packet of letters and tells her to burn them. Hours later, Grace’s lifeless body is retrieved from the lake. In combing through Grace’s letters, Mattie strives to discover whether Grace’s death was an accident or something more sinister, and draws some important conclusions about her own life in the process.

Our Take: (Warning: Includes spoilers!) One of the most fascinating facts about this book is that the murder around which its plot revolves actually took place. Grace’s letters were found in her murderer’s room, not placed into the hands of a sixteen-year-old hotel employee, but Donnelly has lifted the case’s facts and names from the same historical events that inspired Theodore Dreiser’s An American Tragedy. This book is a gem even without that background knowledge, however (we confess that we did not know it until reaching the Epilogue). Mattie is a thoroughly admirable heroine: intelligent, motivated, talented, and loving, but still flawed enough to be relatable. Donnelly’s picture of 1906 upstate New York vividly presents the struggles of everyday life in the country: racism, sexism, poverty, back-breaking farm work, primitive medicine, and limited access to education. Reading this book is far from an onerous chore, however; there is plenty of levity, courtesy of Mattie’s little sisters and her best friend Weaver, and readers will delight in the prank Mattie and her friends play on a thoroughly despicable hotel guest. Donnelly shapes each chapter around Mattie’s word of the day, ensuring that readers will walk away from this book with an enriched vocabulary and perhaps a hint of Mattie’s love of words. And Mattie’s courageous decision at the end of the book will leave readers cheering for her, even if they are selfishly a little sad that the book has come to an end.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Beast Academy Helps Elementary Students Learn Math

Problem: Your elementary school-aged child is hooked on comic books instead of on her math book.

Solution: Give her the Beast Academy books by Art of Problem Solving.
Beast Academy

New Problem: Your elementary school-aged child is staying up past her bedtime to sneak more math problems.

Solution: …we’ll have to get back to you on that.

The Art of Problem Solving provides math enrichment activities and instruction for high-performing middle and high school students. It publishes its own line of math textbooks and also has a website where students can interact with a large community of other math lovers, play math games, view video lessons, and more.

With its new Beast Academy books, Art of Problem Solving has expanded its offerings to younger students. The books, designed for kids in 2nd-5th grades, are divided into four levels, from 3A (shapes, skip counting, perimeter, and area) to 3D (fractions, estimation, and area). There are both guide books and practice books available for each level.

The books cover the concepts mandated by the common core curriculum. But that won’t matter to your child. What will matter is that he won’t be able to get enough of them. In the guide books, concepts are introduced and explained by a group of colorful beasts whose color, size, amount of hair, and number of appendages varies. They are friendly and appealing, and they narrate lessons that are presented in comic-style frames. The graphic format allows plenty of opportunities for characters to point to different parts of, say, a number line or a fraction, as they explain the concepts. And because the lessons are presented as dialogue, students are privy to the beasts’ thinking processes as they reason through problems and concepts. The practice books provide problems so students can put their new know-how to work. Beasts from the guide book appear in the practice books, too, offering tips and instructions at the top of each page, which makes the pages feel familiar and accessible and less like a typical homework assignment. As in the guide book, instructions and examples are very visual.

If your child is bored with standard math instruction, struggling in math, captivated by comics, or particularly receptive to visual material, these books are certainly worth investigating. They would serve as great end-of-summer reads, too; children may enjoy reading the appropriate Beast Academy book before the school year begins to introduce them to important concepts they’ll cover in the next grade. Parents can visit the Beast Academy website  to see sample pages from both guide and practice books, as well as learn more about the series and access free, printable pages.

Monday, August 5, 2013

ChopChop: Healthy Cooking with Kids

The bad news: Child obesity is on the rise, our diets include increasing amounts of processed food, and it seems that more and more kids aren’t getting the nutrients they need. According to the Mayo Clinic, kids with unhealthy eating habits are likely to continue those habits into adulthood, putting them at risk for a host of dangerous health problems.

The good news: Children and even teenagers tend to listen to their parents about nutrition (really!) and tend to follow their lead. According to experts, family cooking sessions are great opportunities to talk about nutrition, encourage kids to try new things (even picky eaters are more likely to dig in when they've had a hand in the preparation of unfamiliar foods), and, of course, have fun.

For parents interested in cooking with their children, ChopChop is an invaluable resource. The mission of the organization is to inspire kids to cook real food, and their products give kids the know-how to do just that. ChopChop produces a cookbook (containing “more than 100 super yummy crazy fun totally doable recipes”) and a quarterly magazine in Spanish or English. Each issue of ChopChop includes inexpensive, kid-friendly, healthy recipes, fun food facts, games and puzzles, and interviews with admirable public figures who are committed to healthy lifestyles. Recipes are accompanied by clear, step-by-step instructions – all of which begin with the mandate that kids wash their hands and clean the counter.

Even non-subscribers can access ChopChop’s collection of recipes on their website where fare is divided into five categories: breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snacks. It’s difficult to imagine anybody not finding something to suit his or her tastes among delicious, hugely diverse options like chicken soup, panzanella, Parmesan yogurt dip with carrots, toshikoshi soba, sunshine smoothies, chai tea, German pancakes…hungry yet? The website, cookbook, and magazine are colorful, accessible, and appealing. Information is conveyed in simple language and accompanied by vivid pictures of food, and of kids in the midst of cooking up a storm.

ChopChop doesn't post calorie counts or nutritional content, or demonize any individual foods, though their content is reviewed by a team of medical and nutritional advisors. One of ChopChop’s most valuable lessons can be learned simply by scrolling through the appealing pictures of the dishes they recommend: healthy eating can, and should, be fun, adventurous, and delicious.

Bon Appetit!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Young Adult Literature Coming to the Big Screen

Blockbuster film series like Harry Potter, Twilight, and The Hunger Games have proven that there’s a lot of money to be made presenting stories from the pages of young adult fiction on the silver screen. The rest of 2013, and the next few years, promise to be filled with releases of films based on books that have captivated young readers. The line-up is a mixture of newcomers and classics. Teenage book lovers may want to get started on reading the following titles, arranged by release date, if they’re the type who likes to read the book first*. The ages cited below correspond to readers, not movie-goers.


City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (ages 14+) - August 21, 2013

One reviewer called the first installment of the popular The Mortal Instruments series Buffy-esque, and it’s a fitting term. Fifteen-year-old Clary witnesses a murder that no one else sees and gets swept up in the world of the Shadowhunters, teenage vigilantes who kill supernatural demons and monsters.

How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff (ages 13+) - October 18, 2013 in the UK; no word on when we’ll see it on this side of the pond

This award-winning book is the story of Manhattan-native Daisy’s trip to the English countryside to visit her cousins. Sounds idyllic, but when terrorists suddenly invade England and war erupts, Daisy and her cousins are forced to fight for survival.

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (ages 14+) - November 1, 2013

Ender’s Game, released almost 30 years ago, needs almost no introduction. Brilliant Andrew “Ender” Wiggin is recruited for Battle School where he undergoes vigorous military training so he can help save the world from hostile aliens. Many parents will be just as excited about this release as their kids!

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (ages 14+) - November 15, 2013

We are not the only ones who adore this book; it is the winner of several awards and has been on the best-seller list for several years running. The story is narrated by Death, who has his hands full in WWII Germany. The course of his work brings him several times across the path of young Liesel Meminger, a foster child who is placed with a couple outside of Munich and finds she can’t resist stealing books.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (ages 14+) – 2014, no other date specified

Like most teenage girls, Hazel finds herself suddenly head-over-heels in love. Unlike most teenage girls, she meets the object of her crush at Cancer Kid Support Group, a retreat she attends to help her cope with the fact that her terminal illness is incurable. We hope the movie will do this much-lauded novel justice.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner (ages 11+) - February 14, 2014

Fans of The Hunger Games will love this fast-paced book. Thomas, the protagonist, wakes up in an elevator, remembering nothing about his life but his own name. He discovers that he has somehow landed in a world his 60 teenage peers call “the glade,” which they have been trying for two years to escape by navigating through the maze that surrounds it. The Maze Runner is the first book in the eponymous trilogy.

Divergent by Veronica Roth (ages 13+) - March 21, 2014

Beatrice lives in dystopian Chicago, where sixteen-year-old citizens must decide which one of five factions they will belong for the rest of their lives. This book, the first in a three-part series, consists mostly of the initiation trial Tris must undergo as a result of her decision. And, of course, she has a secret she is desperate to keep to herself.

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater (ages 13+) – 2015

The horses that run in the annual Scorpio Races are no tame thoroughbreds; they’re blood-thirsty, man-eating creatures taken from Celtic mythology. Tomboy-ish Puck and her brothers are barely scraping by after their parents are killed by water horses when Puck’s oldest brother announces that he will be leaving their island to work on the mainland. In a desperate attempt to keep her remaining family afloat, Puck enters the race with her eyes on the purse; as the first female ever to compete, she will pit her inexperience against reigning champion Sean Kendrick and her opponents’ murderous mounts.

The Giver by Lois Lowry (ages 11+) - in pre-production; no release date available

As far as we are concerned this book is the gold standard by which YA dystopian novels-all the rage these days-should be judged. Young Jonas is shocked to learn that he has been chosen to be the next Giver, keeper of the memories people have forgotten, or never had a chance to make in the first place. As an apprentice to the current Giver, Jonas learns more and more about the experiences of people in the past-gifts, family, snow, war, love, pain-and begins to have doubts about his own world. Little information is available about the movie, but Jeff Bridges has been cast!

*Reading the book first isn’t for everyone. Some students achieve much better comprehension if they see the movie before delving into the more complex,demanding, written version. Young people for whom reading doesn’t come as naturally may already have a sense of which order works best for them – book before movie, or movie before book. If not, the movie-book duos above would be great opportunities for experimentation.

All release dates found through