Four Perfect Pebbles: A Holocaust Story – Marion Blumenthal Lazan writes about her experiences in a concentration camp and her life after liberation from the camp. My class read her book and was so inspired by her that I arranged for her to come visit our school. She talks about hope, teaching tolerance, and overcoming obstacles and horrors in life. Students from all classes and members of the community came to listen. If you get a chance, I recommend the book and inviting her to speak!
Patrick Hughes – I was lucky enough to meet this young man in April 2007 during the Council For Exceptional Children Conference in Kentucky. This video is a wonderful example of how far you can go if you don’t believe the word – can’t. Patrick Hughes is a young man at Univ. of Louisville who was born blind and crippled and yet now plays the piano beautifully as well as "marches" in the Louisville marching band. Here is a video during ESPN College Gameday on 12/2/2006.
Discovery School’s Puzzlemaker – great way to make your own puzzles using vocabulary words for any subject. I have used the Criss Cross (crossword puzzle) and the word search most of all. It was so easy to use and the students enjoyed doing these puzzles. I do recommend that you proofread your work before printing (nothing is worse than having students do a crossword puzzle only to find out you misspelled a word!)
They Did Not Give Up – List of famous people who had some failures to start off with but they didn’t give up. Great way to improve students’ self concept.
Surprising Expiration Dates – This could be a fun lesson for a class and open up a lively discussion