Professor Owl’s Book Corner Newsletter ~ September, 2015

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Welcome to Professor Owl’s Book Corner

In every month’s issue we will share with you

the wonderful world of books!


The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

~~ Dr. Seuss, “I Can Read With My Eyes 


After a long break Professor Owl is back and it’s that time of year again, dust off those notebooks, sharpen those pencils it’s back to school…In this issue, we will share with you some of Professor Owl’s tricks to getting back on track and back to school.


                                                                                                          By Sylvia McGrath


It is that time of year again, children will be going back to school.   Many of them are looking forward to going back, however, for some it is the dread of the homework and lack of playtime can be a very scary thought.  For others it is not school that bothers them but the thought of being beaten up, embarrassed or tormented by bullies.

What is a bully?  A bully is someone who finds power and self-worth by belittling or intimidating others. Sad thing is that often bullies have usually been the victim of another bully.  If you are being bullied the best thing you can do is tell someone.  It’s not tattling, you are not telling to get someone in trouble, you are telling to protect yourself.  Another thing to do is if possible is walk away or stay near an adult if you feel threatened.  Remember being the victim of a bully is not YOUR fault.

You may not be the one being bullied, but being unfortunate enough to watch it happening someone else.  Do not join in, by encouraging or giving the bully an audience, if possible try to get help or find an adult.  Whatever you do don’t try to fight the bully!

Many years ago I was a housemother in a short term children’s home working with children who were deprived, abandoned or ill-treated and put in our care by Children’s Service. Over the past few years I have been doing a lot of research on children with special needs. It really upset me when I realized from my research that a child with a disability is more likely to be physically or verbally bullied than his typically developing fellow students.

Bullying has become a serious problem affecting many children and teens, however it is not likely that most children, especially those with special needs, will walk up to their parents and tell them, “I’m being bullied.”

Bullying can include name-calling, violence, or exclusion, and must be identified and addressed as soon as possible. The objective is to pinpoint the signs of bullying and take preventative measures against future incidents. This can make all the difference in the life and educational progress of a child with special needs. Here are some things we can do, as parents, to ward off bullying and protect our children:

Explain bullying:

  • Depending on what your child can understand, describe what bullying is, what kinds of behaviour are unacceptable and explain that bullying is wrong.
  • Some disabled children, who are used to being stared at, receive comments, and remarks, become used to subtle forms of harassment.
  • They may not be entirely certain that what is happening is bullying, especially if it feels normal

Support your child:

  • Support your child with knowledge!
  • Tell your child exactly what they should do when bullying happens.
  • Be very specific, even giving the exact words to say, like, “Stop teasing me!” or “Leave me alone.”
  • Tell your child to say nothing and simply walk away. Tell them exactly who they should then go and talk to at school if it happens.
  • Let them know that they must tell you right away…

Cleanliness & style:

  • Teach your child proper hygiene habits, and outfit them in stylish clothes.
  • Whether or not your child looks “right,” can make a huge difference with how they are treated by peers.
  • Your child is already different, so don’t let their clothes and grooming cause further distinction.

Stay in contact:

  • Stay in very close contact with your child’s special education teacher, social worker, school counselor, or anyone who is directly involved with your child’s school placement.
  • Frequently “check in” for reports on how your child is managing amongst their peers.
  • Ask your child how things are going, and look for signs of depression or negative feelings about school.
  • You could also enlist the help of another responsible student at the school (a relative, neighbour, or friend’s child) to keep an eye out on your son or daughter, and let you know if anything seems amiss.

Supportive friendships:

  • When friendships start to flourish, teach your son or daughter how to maintain them.
  • Have your child invite friends to come for ice cream, or watch a movie.
  • Your child may need assistance and suggestions on how to be a friend, but do not be too forceful.
  • Carefully observe whether their friendships are true and not deceitful attempts to take advantage in some way.

Obtain a peer tutor:

  • A peer tutor can be a role model, school assistant, and protector of your child.
  • Talk to the special education director in your school district, or the principal. Almost all schools have peer-tutoring programs, which could be extremely beneficial.

Set-up an IEP meeting:

  • Address any problems with bullying that you see.
  • Explain that the current situation is not working, and changes need to be made.
  • Be specific. Perhaps your child would do better in a self-contained classroom.
  • Maybe a peer tutor, classroom change, or schedule adjustment is needed.
  • Get the school “team” working on the issue.
  • Students who bully should be reprimanded through the school. I would suggest you work with school officials to address the matter.
  • Do not contact the perpetrator’s parents yourself. Bullying could be a symptom of bad parenting, so you might not get the results you’d want, anyway.

Take action if needed:

If you disagree with any decisions regarding your child’s education, or how things are being handled, you have options.

The following is an Exceptional Resource for All Adults Who Care about Safety for Kids

The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults:

Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Advocacy, & Confidence for Young People

                       Kid Power book       

This easy-to-use comprehensive guide puts Kidpower’s 23+ years of experience at the fingertips of parents and all adults who care about protecting children and teens from bullying, abuse, abduction, and other violence – and prepares them to empower young people with skills and knowledge in developing positive relationships, increasing their confidence, and taking charge of their emotional and physical safety.


Chapters Include:

What Adults Need to Know About “People Safety” for Kids

  • Creating a Foundation of Emotional Safety for Young People
  • Five Key Self-Protection Strategies for Preventing Trouble
  • Safety Plans to Prepare for the Unexpected
  • Boundaries and Advocacy to Build Better Relationships
  • Self-defense to Stop Most Emergencies
  • Protecting Young People From Bullying
  • Protecting Children from Sexual Abuse
  • Protecting Kids from Abduction and Teaching Stranger Safety
  • The Safety of Kids is Everybody’s Business – How to Intervene
  • One Million Safer Kids – A Call to Action From Kidpower

stamp out bullying


The following is an Exceptional Resource for All Adults Who Care about Safety for Kids

Do You Need A Homework Helper?

Back to school can be a lot of fun seeing old friends and teachers.  One thing most children do not like about going back to school is the homework.

Listed below are some websites that can help you with every subject – helping elementary and high school kids find what they need on the ‘net. They cannot do your homework for you, but offer great age-appropriate kid-friendly links to sites, by e-mail.

Nutritious Brown Bag Lunch Ideas

It’s back to school time and for many parents it means trying to come up with nutritious lunch ideas that their kids won’t trade.  In many schools, the old standard peanut butter & jelly sandwiches aren’t an option anymore due to deadly peanut allergies. Although time may be tight making sure your child eats right pays off in the long run.

Some general rules of thumbs:

  • The less processed high fat, high sugar foods in your child’s lunch the better.
  • Cutting foods into small bite-sized pieces makes it easier for your child to eat lunch in the limited time they have.
  • Make sure there are at least two or three vegetable and fruit servings and one portion of protein
  • Always include water, flavoured water or milk to make sure your child stays hydrated.  Avoid sugary drinks, which will cause you child to have an afternoon “sugar slump”
  • Tortilla wraps or pita bread are great alternatives to plain bread.
  • Rice crackers or Wasa Bread are good options to plain crackers
  • Provide low fat dairy products and meats when possible.
  • Making homemade “baked” potato, sweet-potato chips or pita chips
  • Making popcorn and adding seasoning
  • Packing flavoured rice cakes or mini rice cakes
  • Baked Tortilla Chips and Salsa

Some ideas…

  • Homemade Bean, Rice and Cheese Burritos.  Add lettuce, tomato, and avocado to up the nutritional value.
  • Sandwiches made with whole wheat bread, pita bread or tortilla wrap, a protein such as tuna salad or sliced chicken breast, roasted turkey or ham with veggies such as cucumber, grated carrots, sliced apples or lettuce and tomatoes.
  • Making your own “snack packs” with low fat cheese, cold cuts (cut with cookie cutters to make unique shapes) and whole grain or rice crackers.
  • Hummus or roasted red pepper dip with veggie sticks (carrots, celery, peppers, cucumbers) and homemade pita or bagel chips
  • Small fruit kabobs with, fruit chunks (dip apples into lemon juice to prevent browning) melon balls, berries with low fat yogurt.


POBC Books

Classic Books

Every month download to your I-pad, Reader or Computer “A Classic Book” ~ Completely FREE!

The Secret of the Old Clock

by Carolyn Keene May 1, 1930,

The Secret of the old clockF

I am an avid reader and have been since I was a very young child and loved nothing more than to lose myself in a good mystery. My love of Nancy Drew however, began forty-two years ago, when I purchased the books for my daughter also a book worm who admired Nancy and loved the idea of solving a mystery too.

Last year for Christmas, my daughter and her husband gave me a gift certificate to purchase some E-books and since I write reviews on some of the old classic books for Professor Owls Book Corner; we decided this coming year to share with our readers some of Nancy Drew’s great mysteries. I brought the first three in the series and this month we are reviewing the very first book.

This is the first book in the series and tells the story of Nancy’s search for the will of Josiah Crowley, a man who had seemingly intended to leave some much needed money to cousins and friend regrettably, greedy family members have laid claim to his fortune based on another will in their possession. Nancy believes Josiah wrote a newer will, and is determined to put things right. The story was as I remembered. The pacing is quick enough to compete with today’s fast-paced books, changes are smooth, and the ending completely satisfying. Young readers will likely find some of the overformal dialogue old, if not downright funny in places; however, in a world swamped with vampire, zombie, and other scary novel, a safe, old-fashioned whodunit might be a welcome break for readers of any ages.

Available also at your school and local library and at and

About the author

Nancy Drew Mystery Stories

By Carolyn |Keene


The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories were first published in 1930 by Grosset and Dunlap.  The original 56 stories were written by various people under the pseudonym of Carolyn Keene: …  …

 #1-7,11-25, and 30 by Mildred Wirt Benson
#8, 9, and 10 by Walter Karig
#26 by George Waller, Jr.
#27 by Margaret Scherf    #28 by Wilhelmina Rankin
#29 by Alma Sasse
#31, 33-56, and revised #1-34 by Harriet Adams
#32 by Charles Strong
 The writers were hired by the Stratemeyer Syndicate and followed outlines that were provided by the Syndicate.  Mildred Wirt Benson and Harriet Adams are considered the two most important Nancy Drew authors, and both women had a profound effect on the Nancy Drew series.  However, Walter Karig is also considered important because the three volumes he wrote are favorites with many readers.


New Book Release for September 2015


By Simon Rose



This is the second book written by Simon Rose that we have been honoured to review. It certainly was another great book.

This book starts with fourteen year old Max visiting a cemetery with a friend and finds himself caught up in the adventure of a lifetime. He suddenly gets flashbacks and discovers the fate of another boy lies in his hands.

Max must travel back in time to right the wrongs of the past. You are taken on a journey that is completely unexpected, and ended up somewhere you never would have expected. I love to be surprised when I read and was not disappointed! Professor Owl’s Book Corner will certainly be looking for more of Simon Rose’s books to share with our readers.

This is a great book for teenagers and will appeal to both boys and girls. I generally find books that involve time travel become confusing and to farfetched. Flashback is the exception. Simon Rose manages to keep it simple enough that the reader doesn’t need to get caught up in the details. They simply get to enjoy a good story.

Available from:, and




Writing Prompt

“When you are kind to others, it not only changes you, it changes the world.” – Harold Kushner

Write about a kind act that changes the world for the better. How does it change things?  How does it affect both those involved and those outside of the situation?  This can be real or make believe but think about, write and have fun!

POBC Picks

Professor Owl Recommends:


Boys and girls for  great websites filled with great links for all ages check out:

For Craft Ideas:

For Learning & Fun: &

Apps for Android and iPad/iPhone

Storybook Rhymes Volume 1

Fisher-Price Storybook Icon

Description ~Via GooglePlay

Read and sing along to baby’s favorite nursery rhymes! This interactive app encourages early learning with dynamic characters, engaging music, sung songs, animations and two great classic stories: One, Two, Buckle My Shoe and Itsy Bitsy Spider.

• Two classic nursery rhyme stories:
– One, Two, Buckle My Shoe
– Itsy Bitsy Spider

• Two modes of play that grow with baby’s development:
– Sing to Me – For the younger baby, the narrator sings the stories and any touch advances the content
– Read & Learn – For the older baby, the narrator reads the stories and the interactive touch points reveal additional animated content

• Tap the screen to interact with surprise animations
• Hear engaging music and sung songs for your baby
• Personalized book plate for your baby

Customizable Options:
• Turn background music on/off
• Turn narrator voice on/off
• Auto Play – will automatically “turn the page” to advance content for baby

Made for Ages 5 and Under

We recommend parent and child joint media engagement. See our Media Viewing Tips at:
End User License Agreement:

Via GooglePlay (Android) Via GooglePlay (Android)

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