eNews                                May 2015 Vol. 18-05

President's Message

This has been another busy month, not only for us, it seems. I have heard on more than one occasion that it is as busy or busier than December. With graduations, holidays, end of school year and more everyone seems overwhelmed.  And if you throw in a few birthdays and regular monthly meetings it is over the top!  

We had good news this month, as we were accepted in the grant proposal we were working on last month. With the wind at our backs, we have struck out again and this month submitted two more proposals. With the upgrades and changes in the eTutor program we are easily able to scale the online learning program to tens of thousands of students.   

This week I met with a number of international business representatives who are trying to expand U.S. businesses overseas.  While manufacturing and other products and service organizations attended to explain their business, I was the only one representing education. I was surprised at how enthusiastic other nations were about e-learning. In meetings with representatives from Mexico, Brazil, Japan, India, UAE, I was able to share with each of them a little about eTutor. Time did not allow me to meet with everyone....but hopefully there will be other opportunities.

Can you believe that the month is almost over? I always get anxious for warmer weather and the opportunity to work out in the yard....but the month has not given many days for favorable outside work.  So transplanting, trimming and putting in annuals are on hold. It's just as well...I put in some seeds in a spurt of anticipation very early this spring...too early...and try as they might, I see very little new growth popping up through the soil. Needless to say, I am looking forward to June. 

This month, we celebrate and remember all our Veterans who have sacrificed so much to keep us safe and secure.  

Have a fantastic month!

Summer School and Credit Recovery Courses

Our phone has been continually ringing this month.  Many schools and districts are not offering summer classes.  Therefore, parents are looking for ways to keep their student  engaged in learning over the summer months.  eTutor offers both supplemental and credit recovery courses.  The eTutor summer session is two and a half months long.  Some classes are quickly filling.  If you haven't done so, you will want to enroll your student soon.    

Call 877-687-7200 for special pricing. 



Our Connected Community

 These opportunities continue to grow...and there are more ways to build community....but we are happy to remain with the ones in which we are most familiar. Please join with us.      

   Facebook - Longer entries than what you see on Twitter. If you see something you like...let us know by clicking the like button.. 

   Twitter - Just a sentence that will share with you a bit about what you can learn by clicking on the attached link.  

   eTutor Blog - If you want to learn more about our interests and learn something at the same time, check out the blog. 

  Pinterest - You may lose yourself at this site, but take the plunge.  Feel free to add or "pin" something from our site to your own site. 

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Make somebody smile every day. 

Learning with eTutor

Vocabulary is essential to comprehension. Students need to apply strategies before, during and after reading to understand the written word.

Each word in the Vocabulary section is hyperlinked to the e-Tutor Dictionary. The words should be reviewed and used in a variety of ways. Students might use the following ideas to build and extend vocabulary skills:

  •      Use definitions of words to create word riddles.

  •      Group words based on similarities and/or differences.

  •      Draw pictures that illustrate the vocabulary word.

  •      Play a variation of the card game, Go Fish. Prepare a deck of word cards with five or more sets of four related words in each set (the same word can be used for younger children). Duplicate the cards so that at least each child has a deck for the game. Try to build sets of like words.

  •      Go beyond definitions in the dictionary. Explore ways to describe the associations that cluster around the word.

  •     Choose a vocabulary word and then answer the following questions: How would a scientist describe this word? How would a judge describe this word? How would a poet describe this word? How would you describe this word?

  •     Organize a collection of words:

  • Reference Book: Create vocabulary pages for a three-ring binder.

  • Word Wall: Display collected words and definitions on a bulletin board.

  • Word File: Record words, definitions, and context-rich sentences on index cards.

  • Place them in a recipe box that organizes the words alphabetically.

Students should not skip this important section of each Lesson Module. Learning new vocabulary is essential to learning.

The editing and updating of eTutor Lesson Modules is continuing.

Over 3500 Lesson Modules
are included in the 
eTutor Lesson Library!

 Join the eTutor world of learning today to view 
the lesson modules.


A perfect solution to keep your student engaged in learning throughout the summer months.

  • High interest lesson nodules.

  • Includes grades K-12.

  • Both online and offline activities

  • Optional testing

  • Resources


Writers' Circle

Summer is the perfect time for you to create an online component to supplement your regular instructional program. There is no cost for you to create engaging instructional modules when you use Lesson Pro. The easy to use template makes creating online instruction for your students a snap! Your lesson modules are available to you and your students to use in and out of an instructional program.   Interesting topics from LessonPro this month:  

Business Applications of Derivatives
Human Digestive System
The Monkey and the Crocodile
Of Mice and Men
Ancient Greece

If you have questions or comments, please contact us.  We hope you will join The Writers' Circle today!



   The Book Case            

The Blue Cat of Castle Town  
by Catherine Coblentz

    Ages:  5th - 7th Grades 

This book is out of print and so the cost is high. However, it is a wonderful heartfelt story that even adults will enjoy.  The book tells the story of a kitten born under a blue moon whose destiny was to bring the song of the river, with its message of beauty, peace and contentment, to the inhabitants of Castle Town. The book, illustrated by Janice Holland, was inspired by Coblentz's visit to Castleton, Vermont in 1946 with her husband, who was interested in seeing a nearby wind turbine then being used to generate electricity. A librarian told her of a local girl who had made an embroidered carpet that hung in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Among its motifs, inspired by the natural world of its creator, was a blue cat. Coblentz, a Vermont native, drew on real people from the town's history to tell the story of the blue cat's adventures.

1950 Newberry Honor Book
Book Online
Recorded Book 
Accompanying Worksheet

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Remember that sometimes all of a little just isn't enough.

Listen....So They Will Talk

Listening is an art that requires practice.  Here are some ideas to help you become a better listener for your child's sake.

Be attentive.  Stop what your are doing as soon as you can and give full attention.  Focus fully on your child's words, using eyes as well as ears. A youngster may say nothing is wrong when dejected looks tell you differently. So be sensitive to tone of voice and expression.

Encourage talk.  Eye contact, a smile, a nod and one-word responses indicate understanding if not agreement. Keep questions brief, open and friendly, and try to avoid "why" questions. Children don't always know all the reasons behind their actions and feelings and open-ended questions won't help. 

Often repeating an important idea your teenager has expressed, but in  tentative way, draws the child out.  "It sounds like your feelings were hurt when she said that. "You must feel very proud to have done that. Am I right?"

Try to empathize.  Understanding others begins with empathy, putting yourself into another's shoes. Empathizing with your teenager may take imagination and patience, but try to focus on underlying feelings the child may be having difficulty in expressing.

Listen with respect.  React to your teenager as you would to an adult friend.  Grownups tend to do most of the talking when conversing with young people. LISTEN as much as you talk. After speaking for half a minute or so, stop and let your  youngster have a chance. Accept the fact that teenagers are complainers. Let them get their grievances off their chests. Try not to interrupt or push a topic they don't want to discuss.  

Adapted from National School Public Relations Association

Good Health Covers a Lot of Territory

 Your child's health is absolutely critical to every stage of life,  in every endeavor.  Parents can manage a young child's health by seeing that the child receives medical attention, by guarding her or his safety, and by providing balanced meals and encouraging physical activities.

As a part of growing mentally, every child must gradually learn to become the custodian of her or his body by taking on the responsibility of individual well-being. It's a gradual process, a learning process.  No one can teach a child alone.

  • Talk openly about problems related to health.

  • Provide an example that values health and well-being. Children learn most from their families and environment.  In acquiring a concern for dental care, proper nutrition, exercise, preventive medical care, proper rest, etc., children learn what they live.

  • Practice household safety, especially in regard to drugs, cleaning fluids, and toys.

Adapted from National Education Association

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Be careful the things you say; children will listen. 

Arranging Time

Time is the inexplicable raw material of everything.  With it, all is possible, without it, nothing.  The supply of time is truly a daily miracle, an affair genuinely astonishing when one examines it. 

You wake up in the morning, and lo! your purse is magically filled with twenty-four hours of the un-manufactured tissue of the universe of your life! It is yours. It is the most precious of possessions....No one can take it from you. And no one receives either more or less than you receive. 

You have to live on this twenty-four hours of daily time.  Out of it you have to spin health, pleasure, money, content, respect, and the evolution of the immortal soul. Its right use, the most effective use, is a matter of the highest urgency and of the most thrilling actuality.  All depends on that.  Your happiness...the elusive prize that you are all clutching for, my friends...depends on that.

If one cannot arrange that an income of twenty-four hours day shall exactly cover all proper items of expenditure, one does muddle one's whole life indefinitely.  

Adapted from The Public School  Administrator

Becoming Effective Writers and Communicators

Spelling serves the writer in recording ideas, and assists the reader in comprehending the message. The purpose of learning to spell becomes evident to students as they try to transcribe ideas into written symbols which  can be read by themselves and others.  

Able spellers employ many strategies. Some students easily internalize and apply knowledge of complex patterns of print during reading and writing experiences. However, the majority of students require guidance and encouragement to:

  • sustain an interest in language and a curiosity about words;
  • develop confidence  as communicators  and writers;
  • extend their listening, speaking, reading and writing vocabularies; 
  • continually increase their memory repertoires of common, irregularly spelled words;
  • use visual imaging to imprint words and letter combinations to memory;
  • use auditory (sound) cueing such as rhyming words to spell by analogy or similarity of sound.  

Adapted from California  Bd. of Education

The Memory Game

It is truly a joy to remember fun and satisfying things. Then again, it's really awful top be plagued by negative memories.  The more emotion that is tied to an event, the more likely it is to be remembered....whether that memory is accurate or not.

Observe how your memory works as you respond to the following questions. What do you think of first, second, and so forth?

  • What did you have for breakfast last Sunday?
  • What is the nicest thing anyone ever did for you?
  • What is the song of  a robin?  A crow? A swallow?

Tell yourself: "I have  great memory, and it is getting better.  I always remember what I want to remember."

Adapted from The  Next  Step  Magazine

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Be careful the things you do; children will see...and learn.

Marvelous May Links:

Science Toy Maker: This non-commercial site features projects that use easily-available, inexpensive materials, and don't require special skills, tools materials or facilities. Activities are thoroughly tested to work, yet also have the potential to be improved by creative inventors and tinkerers.

The Grid on TryScience: What's "grid computing" and how can it solve huge problems like finding a cure for cancer? You'll learn through several online and offline activities available on this site. You'll need the free Flash Player.

The Mind of Leonardo: Web site for the new exhibition “The Mind of Leonardo” at the Institute and Museum of the History of Science in Florence, Italy. Explore Leonardo da Vinci’s mode of thinking and his unitary conception of knowledge as the effort to assimilate, through bold theoretical syntheses and inventive experiments, the laws that govern all of the wondrous operations of man and nature. You’ll need either Window’s Media Player or the QuickTime player to access the video elements.

Science for Citizens: This site is chock full of links to research projects needing your help. This is citizen science: It's your participation that helps scientists collect and analyze data. Perfect for everyone from the backyard scientist to the diehard storm chaser.

Roadmap to Harmony: A wonderfully colorful Flash interactive site containing articles, videos, data, and research to get us thinking about energy, education, sustenance, health, the earth, flora and fauna, connectivity, exchange, and coexistence.

Wishing all of our Dads a Happy Father's Day!

From the 
Knowledge HQ Staff

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