When not tutoring or writing, I can often be found knitting socks with my cat Lulu draped over my shoulders. I enjoy doing Sudoku, KenKen, and crossword puzzles, and my idea of heaven is reading on a sunlit beach. I am a lover of words, of language.
I live in an Amherst, Massachusetts empty nest, with my husband, Keith, an artist, and our two Siamese cats.
Parents, I believe that I can help your child.
All I have to do is hear someone talk about a child who is having trouble learning to read, and I begin trying to diagnose the problem. I want to help that child, because this is what I have devoted my career to doing.
I am passionate about teaching reading.
My professional experience and training have given me a variety of teaching approaches to choose from, and you can be sure that part of what I love about teaching reading is figuring out who my students are and what they need.
I am prepared.
Kids enjoy working with me. They immediately gain confidence, as they feel themselves progressing, and my teaching style is encouraging, supportive. I joke around a bit, but at the same time, hold high standards for my students and try to stretch them as much as their ability, maturity, and personality will allow. Maybe my crazy earrings help, too!
We will have fun as your child progresses.
I knew I wanted to be a teacher as a preteen. My younger sisters were students in my “school” in the attic, where my curriculum was a modified version of Go to the Head of the Class.
Teaching is in my bones.
Parents, I welcome you to contact me about tutoring your child. If you would like to learn more about my background, please ask me to send you a resumé.
Teachers, perhaps we can brainstorm about difficulties in teaching reading.
I would love to have a dialogue about early literacy with other education professionals. Perhaps I can share something that will help you with a certain student, and I know I can benefit from hearing your perspective on teaching reading.
Let’s help each other help our students.
I would love to hear about your struggles or successes with teaching reading. Our dialogue might address issues such as:
- Different ways to teach phonics
- Teaching with leveled books
- Teach guided reading
- Leveled texts that come with the basal
- Using ebooks and apps to teach early literacy
- Approaches you find especially useful for teaching reading
- Incorporating the CCSS into your teaching of reading
Education Publishers and Editors, I invite you to contact me about writing or editing projects.
I feel fortunate to have found a way to combine my love of writing with my extensive knowledge of how children learn to read: writing leveled texts for beginning readers. The following are factors I consider when crafting a fiction or nonfiction book at a given level:
- language and sentence structure – sentence length and type, tricky structures, idioms;
- word characteristics – phonetic/nonphonetic, concrete/abstract, imageable/nonimageable, high/low frequency;
- word meaning, familiarity;
- theme familiarity – background knowledge needed;
- academic level of student – phonemic and morphemic awareness, experience with decoding, sight vocabulary;
- comprehension strategies.
I have detailed charts of all these factors for children in kindergarten and first grade, and I understand that new text level expectations are being promulgated for students of all ages.
I incorporate my extensive experience as a reading specialist into my writing.
Naturally, one of my fascinations is with text complexity and text construction. For example, I try to follow the work of Elfrieda H. Hiebert at textproject.org.
I am a text nerd.
I have written and published leveled readers, comprehension and phonics workbooks (back in the day), teachers’ manuals, and test items.
I am an experienced author.
I cringe when I find blatant errors in spelling and grammar in the press, which I seem to do almost daily.
I’m a grammar snob.