In it for the long haul… the benefits of reading aloud to older kids

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It’s no secret that reading aloud benefits young children, preschoolers, and even newborns. According to Catherine Pearson at The Huffington Post, “…researchers have hard evidence that reading aloud activates the parts of preschoolers’ brains that help with mental imagery and understanding narrative — both of which are key for the development of language and literacy.”

But, did you know that reading aloud shouldn’t stop when kids can read on their own?

Reading aloud to older children influences their attitudes and behaviors about reading books for fun. In the Kids and Family Reading Report, published by Scholastic earlier this year, the frequency with which parents read aloud drops significantly after age 5 — and drops even further after age 8.

Liza Baker, the executive editorial director at Scholastic, explains, “As they become independent readers, we tend to let them go, but even kids in older demographics love nothing more than that time with their parents. We’re blown away that kids time and again said the most special time they recall spending with a parent is reading together.”

How to make read aloud time fun for older kids

Let them choose. 89% of kids ages 6 to 17 surveyed for the Kids and Family Report agree that the favorite books “are the ones that I have picked out myself.”

Read UP! A child’s reading level typically doesn’t catch up to his listening level until eighth grade. By reading above the child’s reading level, you challenge their intellect and imagination, as well as provide motivation to read increasingly complex texts.

It’s storytime. Reading aloud allows older children to appreciate a great story without the chore of reading for meaning. What better way to keep kids hooked on reading?!

10 outstanding books to read aloud to older kids

Need some book suggestions to get started? Here are 10 of our personal faves:

  1. Danny the Champion of the Worldby Roald Dahl 
  2. The Mouse and the Motorcycleby Beverly Cleary 
  3. City of Emberby Jeanne DuPrau
  4. The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyleby Avi
  5. Fablehaven by Brandon Mull
  6. My Side of the Mountainby Jean Craighead George
  7. Peter and the Star Catchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson
  8. Summer of the Monkeysby Wilson Rawls
  9. Wonderby R.J. Palacio
  10. My Brother Sam is Dead by James Lincoln Collier & Christopher Collier

 

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

Back to Basics Private School Teacher of the Year: Christina DiMauro

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Back to Basics Private School, 1 on 1 private school, alternative school Delaware
Back to Basics Private School 2016-2017 Teacher of the Year is Christina DiMauro, shown here accepting congratulations from Private School Coordinator Tammy Ford and Director Beverly Stewart, M.Ed.

Each year, the students of Back to Basics Private School vote on the Teacher of the Year. The race is always tight, because each of our teachers offers something special!

This year, our students singled out Christina DiMauro as the best of the best. Christina is a newcomer to Back to Basics, but already making a big impact in Math and Chemistry classes.

Congrats to Christina and to all of our teachers, who make Back to Basics such a special place!

 

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

As the school year draws to a close…

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2017 Closing Ceremonies and Graduation… It was a bittersweet night, because we will really miss the students who are leaving. But, we know that they all have such bright futures ahead of them. And, it has been an honor to be a part of their journey!

2017 Back to Basics Private School Closing Ceremonies and Graduation

Small, Graduation 2017, programs
Small, Graduation 2017, Kevin at Keyboard BEST
Small, Graduation 2017, Trumpet
Small, Graduation 2017, Beverly's speech
Small, Graduation, Mohammad Speech, close up
Small, Graduation 2017, Mohammed diploma
Small, Graduation 2017, Mike Speech close up
Small, Graduation 2017, Mike diploma BEST
Graduation 2017, Ross speech
Graduation 2017, Ross diploma
Small, Graduation 2017, Christina, Teacher of the Year
Small, Graduation 2017, Highlights of the Year, Wall
Small, Graduation 2017, Grads and Beverly
Small, Graduation 2017, cake
Small, Graduation 2017, Reception
Small, Graduation 2017, Charlie the sculpture

About Back to Basics K-12 Private School in Wilmington, Delaware

Back to Basics Private School in Wilmington, Delaware offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction and self-esteem building by experienced, degreed instructors.

At Back to Basics Private School, we create a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of your child. The teaching staff is dedicated to the growth and development of your child academically, socially, mentally and emotionally.

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

NBC 10 Philadelphia showcases Back to Basics Private School senior!

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What a wonderful story by NBC 10 Philadelphia about one of our senior students! We are so proud of all that our students have accomplished here at Back to Basics Private School.

CLICK HERE TO SEE ROSS AND HIS STORY

 

Back to Basics Private School in Delaware, alternative school

About Back to Basics K-12 Private School in Wilmington, Delaware

Back to Basics Private School in Wilmington, Delaware offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction and self-esteem building by experienced, degreed instructors.

At Back to Basics Private School, we create a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of your child. The teaching staff is dedicated to the growth and development of your child academically, socially, mentally and emotionally.

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

 

Inspire your kids to shoot for the moon! Today is National Astronaut Day!

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National Astronaut DayNational Astronaut Day celebrates astronauts as true heroes, with a mission to inspire ALL to “reach for the stars” by sharing amazing astronaut stories and experiences.

And, you can celebrate by watching a lot of space-related events on Facebook Live! A number of former NASA astronauts — including Leroy Chiao, Frank Culbertson, Clayton Anderson and Nicole Stott — will talk during a series of webcasts beginning at 9 a.m. EDT. You can watch them on the Facebook page of the Uniphi Space Agency, a talent agency for astronauts that’s organizing today’s events.

The history of National Astronaut Day

On May 5th, 1961, Astronaut Alan Bartlett Shepard Jr. became the first American in space aboard the Freedom 7 Space capsule. The brief suborbital flight, which lasted 15 minutes and reached a height of 116 miles into the atmosphere, was a milestone achievement. This trailblazing example of heroic bravery and adventurous spirit is this essence of what National Astronaut Day is all about.

Inspiring young space enthusiasts in Delaware

Founded in 1989, the Delaware AeroSpace Education Foundation (DASEF), an independent non-profit education organization which implements successful programs to motivate, engage, educate and inspire people from diverse background and communities in Delaware. This innovative organization operates with a vision to link contemporary aeronautic, space, and engineering themes with traditional school subjects to increase interest in science and technology.

DASEF programs for young children in Delaware

DASEF offers early childhood experiences that create an exceptional learning environment that inspires children and their families with a sense of appreciation for the earth and its place in the universe. The DASEF vision is driven by the belief that “Wisdom Begins with Wonder.” To learn more, visit DASEF.

About Back to Basics K-12 Private School in Wilmington, Delaware

Back to Basics Private School in Wilmington, Delaware offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction and self-esteem building by experienced, degreed instructors.

At Back to Basics Private School, we create a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of your child. The teaching staff is dedicated to the growth and development of your child academically, socially, mentally and emotionally.

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

Photo by Photokanok and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Make a Difference! Earth Day is April 22nd

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Each year, April 22nd marks Earth Day, the unofficial birth of the modern environmental movement. Begun in 1970, Earth Day gave a voice to an emerging consciousness, putting important environmental concerns on the front page.

The idea originated with then US Senator Gaylord Nelson as a way to infuse student energy with an emerging public consciousness about air and water pollution. And, on April 22,1970, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies. By the end of that year, the first Earth Day had led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean AirClean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.

Today, Earth Day is the largest secular observance in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year. And, it is still a day of action that changes human behavior and encourages policy changes.

Learn more about our Earth: Local Delaware Earth Day events

Brandywine Zoo Earth Day Celebration: Party for the Planet

Saturday, April 22, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Brandywine Zoo, Wilmington

What can you do to help save species? Learn about what you can do to make every day Earth Day during this special Party for the Planet. Be sure to also check out the Wilmington State Parks’ Nature-on-the-Go cart as well. Free.

Earth Day Hike at Cape Henlopen State Park

Saturday, April 22, 11 a.m., Cape Henlopen State Park, Lewes

Celebrate Earth Day with a hike searching for early spring plants and animals. Discover how they get a head start on other organisms and how they adapt to life in the park. Dress for the weather. For ages 7 and older with a paying adult. Limit 20. Pre-registration recommended by calling 302.645.6852.

Storybook Saturday Kickoff at the DuPont Nature Center

Saturday, April 22, 11 a.m. to Noon, DuPont Nature Center, Milford

Join the kick-off of Storybook Saturdays with a special Earth Day storybook and activity on the importance of food webs, featuring “Octopus Escapes Again!” by Laurie Ellen Angus. This is a family-friendly activity is open to visitors of all ages. Walk-in visitors are welcome, but please RSVP at 302.422.1329 or . Free.

Sunset Kayak Trip at Lums Pond State Park

Saturday, April 22, 6 p.m., Lums Pond State Park, Bear

Paddle into the sunset on a guided tour. Experience the change from day to night on the water. Suitable for beginner paddlers. Instruction is provided. Pre-registration required by calling 302.368.6989. Meet at the Boathouse in Area 2. $20 per person.

About Back to Basics K-12 Private School in Wilmington, Delaware

Back to Basics Private School in Wilmington, Delaware offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction and self-esteem building by experienced, degreed instructors.

At Back to Basics Private School, we create a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of your child. The teaching staff is dedicated to the growth and development of your child academically, socially, mentally and emotionally.

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

Photo by imagerymajestic and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Why do parents choose a private school? A low teacher to student ratio was the #1 answer!

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The top reasons why parents chose a private school for their children are all related to school climate and classroom management, including better student discipline, better learning environment, improved student safety and more individual attention.

And, according to  the Council for American Private Education, a whopping “84.2 percent of parents identified the ‘ratio of students per teacher.'”

Back to Basics Private School offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction in all subjects.

Back to Basics Private School creates a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of each child. The result is an environment where success is possible for all students

In fact, the school is so successful, that Back to Basics Private School is Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved private school! Read about some of our students at Success Stories. Or, click the video below to hear about one student’s journey.

To learn more about Back to Basics Private School or to arrange a tour, please contact us at 302-594-0685.

Photo by stockimages and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

Keeping kids safe on the Internet

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As parents, we let go a little at a time… sometimes by inches. Crossing the street alone, attending a sleepover for the first time, or learning how to use the stove are all badges of honor for growing kids. These successes mark a child’s burgeoning independence and should be celebrated.

As they become pre-teens and teens, however, the stakes get higher and higher. And, letting go (even a little) often becomes more difficult for concerned parents. How much independence is enough? Too little? Too much?  And, keeping kids safe on the Internet gives many parents sleepless nights.

No, mom. You’re not overreacting. The dangers of the Internet are real.

Between cyberbullying, sexting, over sharing, and predator worries, it’s enough to make many parents swear to go “off the grid.” Here are some sobering numbers:

“Many parents begin questioning if they should actively monitor a child’s online activity,” says Hillary Smith in a recent article for Women’s Voices Magazine. “Unfortunately, this places parents in a precarious situation, because many people (especially teens) view these acts as an invasion of privacy.”

Setting the rules (and making sure they are followed)

A heart to heart talk is the first step. It’s important that kids they understand the very real dangers that may lurk behind a smiling (and potentially fake) profile picture.

It’s also vital that they understand that every search, web site visit, online posting and email is registered or recorded somewhere on the Internet. And, once something is out there — a racy photo, an impulsive cyber rant, or a traceable address — it’s virtually impossible to actually “delete.” It’s the ultimate example of “letting the genie out of the bottle.” 

For example, the popular Snapchat app is billed as an easy way to send a photo or video from your phone, determine how long the person on the other end can see the image, and then have it self-destruct. A lot of images from Snapchat, however, are regularly posted to revenge porn sites, called “snap porn.” 

“Users think their snaps will disappear and they are wrong. It’s actually pretty easy to recover a Snap, take a screenshot of it and share it with others,” explains Ann Brenoff of The Huffington Post in The 12 Apps That Every Parent Of A Teen Should Know About.

The best defense is a good offense. Know what your kids are doing. Here’s how:

Sometimes, even the best kids hide things from parents. And, today, there’s an app for that. Some of the top apps for hiding everything from photos and videos, to text messages include:

Audio Manager, Calculator% and Vaulty are all innocuous looking apps that are, in reality, ways to hide messages, photos, videos, and even other apps.

Snapchat and BurnNote offer “self destructing” abilities, which are easily circumvented. What was intended as a private photo, video or message can be made public all too easily.

Omegle is a chance to converse online with random strangers about… anything.

Tinder, Blendr and KiK Messenger are “hook up apps” where adults can easily find kids.

Final words of wisdom from the experts

The best advice? “If you wouldn’t do it face to face, don’t do it online,” says Shelagh McManus, an online safety advocate for security software Norton by Symantec. “For example, would you go up to a complete stranger and start a conversation? Would you be abusive to friends or strangers in a pub or bar?

Just because you feel protected by the apparent distance a screen gives between you and the person you’re talking to, you must remember that online is still the real world.”

For more tips and information, visit Internet Safety Tips at WebMD.

About Back to Basics K-12 Private School in Wilmington, Delaware

Back to Basics Private School in Wilmington, Delaware offers a unique school environment for students in grades K-12 and a focus unlike any other school in the state. With a cap of 15 students, Back to Basics Private School provides students with customized, 1-on-1 instruction and self-esteem building by experienced, degreed instructors.

At Back to Basics Private School, we create a personalized team to tailor an integrated curriculum to the specific needs and abilities of your child. The teaching staff is dedicated to the growth and development of your child academically, socially, mentally and emotionally.

To learn more about Delaware’s only Department of Education-approved 1-on-1 private school, call us at 302-594- 0685.

Photo by nenetus and FreeDigitalPhotos.net.