A for Athlete

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CLOH.Org camps Help Children Make Friends With News, Books, Words and Numbers about the world, fitness and sports.[]

What Dr. Morton Botel says works, and not[]

Helping kids become proficient in the skills and strategies of reading and develop as lifetime readers.

We aim to nurture not only the student’s minds but also to have fun and stimulate interests in travel, cultures, fitness and high-level sports participation.

The problem is that most of the textbook programs, computer programs and homework assignments that purport to meet goals over the last two or three decades simply do not work. In that regard, Anne Lewis, national expert on education policy, in a recent Phi Delta Kappan article, pointed out that, “The pundits are now admitting that the law has done little to improve real achievement…(instead) it fosters curriculum and instructional decisions that run completely counter to higher-end learning or research-based knowledge about what stimulates students at all levels of ability to want to work hard.”

But until schools become wiser, parents can make significant contributions that enable their children to become thoughtful and strategic learners by doing collaborative research-proven activities. Here is a camp that values such activities grounded in current cognitive learning theory:


  • Do Sustained Silent Reading, Reading Aloud and Sharing Together.
    • Spend up to 30-minutes a few times a week when everyone reads silently something they have chosen. Then have students share or read aloud something that stood out for them.
  • Do Guided Reading Together.

Set up regular times of 45 minutes or so two or three times a week. Choose sites and books that children can read with some fluency. Avoid frustrating books. Engage children in conversation that focus attention on the title and the illustrations.

  • Read aloud so that they hear the intonations of speech rather than having them begin by reading word by word.
  • Echo reading (Captain reads a line and the student echoes).
  • Choral reading (couples and small groups read the lines together.)
  • At various points in the story have the students talk about the characters and actions and predict what will happen next.
  • When finished share responses to “What stood out for you?”

“Do grammar” together through sentence and word combining investigations by arranging and rearranging words and their grammatical forms. Take words from the story and show how to combine and recombine them into as many sentences as they can. The student writes each of the sentences correctly capitalized and punctuated. For example, if you wrote the following words and some of their forms on individual cards and played the game have “How many sentences can you make?” you could make many sentences. This activity provides practice in choosing Standard English grammatical form and word order, punctuation, capitalization and spelling.


Sentence Making and the Word Making activity that follow involve the student in doing investigations, not just mindless drill. In the process the child uses many senses: talking, movement and writing. This practice fosters insights in intuitive grammar and correctness in speaking and writing Standard English.

Do phonics together through letter-pattern combining investigations by arranging, rearranging and combining letters and letter patterns.

Take letters and letter patterns from the story which when combined and recombined result in a number of words. For example, write the following letters on individual cards and play the game of “How Many Words Can You Make?”

ook ow l n s h ike ake

You will get such words as: look, like, lake, hike, and low


Play the game of “How many ways?” together.

Instead of just practicing isolated number facts like 2+3=5, have the child see how many ways they can put 5 pennies in two boxes. If they keep a record they will find six different possibilities, which can be represented by number sentences. This might be the order of their findings.

2+3=5, 4+1=5, 5+0=5, 3+2=5, 0+5=5 AND 1+4=5

Then they might notice or you can help them see that a nice way to record the results in a vertical column would be:







Play What’s My Rule? together[]

1 2 ___ 4 5 6

___ 2 4 6 ___ 10 ___ 14

A C E F ___ ___ K ___ 2, 4 3, 5 5, 7 9, ___ 13___ ____ ____

Tell stories together about numbers.[]

Tell stories about a number or number sentence and have the child tell you stories. Write them in a journal where you might keep record of other stories and observations made by the child.

2 I have two hands I spent two dimes for ice cream.

Please put two spoons of sugar in my tea.


Jill has two brothers and three sisters. She has five siblings.

There are two cats and three dogs in the pet shop window. How many pets are in the window?Three space pilots went to the moon to rescue two of their friends stranded there.

Telling number stories helps the student understand that there are an unlimited number of real world or imaginary events or conditions that can be represented by a number or number sentence. In this activity the child gets to read his or her own words.

By providing the kinds of experiences presented above, parents, tutors and teachers will produce the promised results: a lasting friendship with books words and numbers; a friendship that will result in strong family ties and strategic academic skillfulness and fun in the process.