About Sylvia W. McGrath, Freelance Writer, Literacy Tutor, and Professional Book Reviewer.

A few years ago, retired and decided to follow a long-time dream of mine, of being a freelance writer, and specialize in writing for children and young adults with health and learning challenges. I have taken several courses, on writing and tutoring. I am a licensed tutor and professional book reviewer. In 2010 my daughter and I started Professor Owl's Book Corner and over the years have become a freelance writer, co-authored and published a Book with two Life Coaches titled "After the Diagnosis ~ The Journey Beyond, along with several poems.

Professor Owl’s Book Corner

Welcome to the April 9th, 2021 Weekly Issue of Professor Owl’s Book Corner Newsletter where in addition to supporting those with special needs and learning challenges, we are also committed to being more focused on YA/New Adult reading and literacy. We will be featuring tips from a certified literacy tutor to help make your reading experience the best it can be.

We will also be encouraging young writers with tips, writing exercises and we will still be updating our Community News Boards with the latest news from Variety Village and The March of Dimes.

Please feel free to give us your feedback on our new issue, also send us any ideas you may have to help Professor Owl’s Book Corner be all that it can be. We look forward to hearing from you and bringing you a new, and more interesting newsletter.

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Professor Owl’s Book Corner’s main goal has always held true since we started this newsletter ten years ago.  That goal was to help promote books, literacy, and activities for children with special needs. We hope to assist children and young adults with learning and health challenges, believe that anything possible.  We hope to show examples of how some young people have achieved their dreams. We also want to share resources of where to get the tools by showcasing organizations that are available to you.

April is World Autism Month. At Autism Speaks Canada, we’re committed to creating a kinder, more inclusive world for people with autism. Every year we lead a global effort to increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism. Once again, we invite you to join us in this important work. Your gift will help 1 in 66 children and youth in Canada and 70 million people worldwide with autism.

Throughout the month we will celebrate our continued commitment to diversity and inclusion by sharing real stories of autistics across all Canadian provinces and territories to shine a light on their strengths, dreams and struggles. We hope they will inspire others on the spectrum and create a more inclusive Canada.  You can demonstrate your commitment to understanding and acceptance of people with autism every day by advocating, sharing stories, and lighting up the world with kindness. Thank you for doing your part in building a kinder world for people with autism.

Wise Picks

book-of-the-month

The Insiders Club 

by Echo Miller  (Author)

Four social misfits: an 80s-obsessed eccentric, a movie-quoting mimic, a control freak, and a scrappy loner. They share a diagnosis on the autism spectrum, but can they create a home?
Keegan Harris has one weekend to persuade three other autistic guys to move into his group home. Using an 80s movie as his guide for socialization, he’s organized a series of adventures designed to form deep connections and create lifelong friends. But each stranger has packed emotional baggage and arrived with agendas of their own. Unless Keegan can convince everyone to stick to the script, his blockbuster plan may turn companionship into chaos.

When Monday morning rolls around, will they be best buddies or will Keegan’s community close before it officially opens?

The Insiders Club is a realistic novel that brings marginalized characters into the spotlight. If you like unconventional heroes, unlikely friendships, and bittersweet coming-of-age stories, then you’ll love Echo Miller’s uplifting read.

Take a closer look inside the autism spectrum and see that everybody wants to belong. Buy The Insiders Club to find your way home today!

This is a great story.  I  really enjoyed learning the points of view of these four similar yet completely different characters. Looking forward to reading the next book in this series

Books available at  www.kobo.com, www.amazon.ca,   www.amazon.com,  other fine book stores and your Public and School Libraries

writers-corner

Writing prompts are a wonderful way to kick-start your creativity and generate ideas. There isn’t a right or wrong way to respond, just be honest, be creative and use your imagination!

“So as long as a person is capable of self-renewal, they are a living being.”

~Henri Frederic Amiel

Spring usually signifies new beginnings and renewal.  In what area of your life would you like to “start over”?

Reflect and write!

Get creative, write but most importantly…have fun!!


Writing Prompt~A picture is worth a thousand words…

A picture is worth a thousand words…

Tulips

Spring is a time when nature comes back to life. Your mission should you choose to accept it is to write about something coming back to life, it can be pretty or terrifying, your choice. Whatever you do get creative and have fun!

Attention all aspiring authors: 

CAMP NANOWRIMO STARTS ON APRIL 1st, 2021

campnanowrimo

Are you 13 years old or older? Have you heard of NaNoWriMo.org? Every November thousands participate in an online writing event to complete 50,000 words in just 30 days. Now they’ve made it even better…

CampNaNoWriMo.org is a virtual writer’s camp, designed to inspire you and keep you motivated while you work on your masterpiece. Camp NaNoWriMo.org runs twice a year in April and July and unlike NaNoWriMo welcomes word-count goals of 30,000 and up.

Writers can tackle any project they’d like, including new novel drafts, revisions, poetry, scripts, and short stories.

So sign up today!  See you at camp!

“Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.” ~William Faulkner

wise-picks

variety-village2

www.varietyvillage.ca/events-volunteering/events

Variety Village is a family-friendly fitness, sports and life skills facility in Toronto.

There are programs for all ages and skill levels, join today!

Variety Village is pleased to host exciting special events throughout the year. Our goal is to connect with our community and raise funds to support Variety Village by creating mutually beneficial events that support healthy, active lifestyles in an inclusive environment.

Variety VillageVariety programming empowers children with disabilities to be seen, participate, and feel included. We bring accessible facilities to life with sports, fitness, activities, summer camps, skills training and coaching for competitive and Paralympic athletes. Through local partnerships, we extend our reach through accessibility training and education

www.varietyvillage.ca/events-volunteering

We’ll periodically send you news and updates regarding special events, facility closures & alerts, and other important information

Events · Restrictions & Closures · Variety Village in Toronto

Local Events | Variety – the Children’s Charity of Ontario

https://varietyontario.ca/local-events

 Access Expo – Variety Ontario

www.varietyvillage.ca/events/access-expo

Discover ability-enhancing products and services, play adaptive sports and attend informative workshops. Register for free today! This inaugural year will showcase programs and services promoting: accessibility, inclusion, healthcare, sport, fitness, and healthy living at a premier accessible facility – Variety Village in Scarborough, Ontario.

Home | Variety Ontario

How we help. Variety programming empowers children with disabilities to be seen, participate, and feel included. We bring accessible facilities to life with sports, fitness, activities, summer camps, skills training, and coaching for competitive and Paralympic athletes.

Active Living Conference – Variety Ontario

 Access Expo – Variety Ontario

www.varietyvillage.ca/events/access-expo

Active Living Conference – Variety Ontario

www.varietyvillage.ca/events/active-living-conference

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Events for March 2020

Events and Conferences | March of Dimes Canada

Variety Village is a family-friendly fitness, sports and life skills facility in Toronto.

There are programs for all ages and skill levels, join today!

Variety Village is pleased to host exciting special events throughout the year. Our goal is to connect with our community and raise funds to support Variety Village by creating mutually beneficial events that support healthy, active lifestyles in an inclusive environment.

Stand Up for CE – March of Dimes Canada‘s Stand Up for CE is an event to raise funds for people participating in Conductive Education® classes in conjunction with …

Visit www.marchofdimes.ca/DodgeballVancouver for more details. 
​​​
For more information contact:

Berat Barzanjee
Fund Development Assistant ​
March of Dimes Canada
10 Overlea Blvd.​
Toronto, ON M4H 1A4
Phone:(416) 425-3463 ext. 7305
​bbarzanjee@marchofdimes.ca​​

Home page | Holland Bloorview

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital 150 Kilgour Road, Toronto Ontario Canada M4G 1R8. Tel 416 425 6220 | Toll free 800 363 2440. Fax 416 425 6591 Footer menu. Working With Us; Your Feedback Matters; Footer Login. Volunteer Portal; For Current Employees; Social Media. Follow Us. Facebook; Twitter; Instagram; Youtube; LinkedIn; Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation …

  • For Current Employees | Holland Bloorview

  • The Therapeutic Clown Program at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital was …

  • Our Services | Holland Bloorview. Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital 150 …

5 Myths for Worlds Down Syndrome Awareness Day” #WATWB

banner-520-x120-white WATB wide

The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by five co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be: Roshan Radhakrishnan, Shilpa Garg Sylvia McGrath, Eric Lahti and Belinda McGrath Witzenhausen.

At Professor Owl’s Book Corner we love to provide resources for young adults (13+) with special needs, chronic illness and learning challenges.  We came across this video on March 21st which was #WorldDownSyndromeDay, and felt we needed to share. Click below to hear actor and Mencap ambassador George Webster dispel five myths about Down’s Syndrome.

BBC Bitesize Celebrates #WorldDownSyndromeDay Click here!

Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ March 15, 2021.

 

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

If you would like to tell us about your goals, ask for assistance or information ~ Just drop Professor Owl a note to professorowl@outlook.com 

Image result for Royalty Free Images For Saint Patrick's Day. Size: 193 x 106. Source: www.istockphoto.com

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to all our readers!

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The Tales of Valisa:

The Tamiran Elves Legacy:

The Rebellious Princess

The Tales of Valisa

by Sai Marie Johnson  (Author)

The Tales of Valisa: the Tamiran Elves Legacy debut book entitled, The Rebellious Princess, is about a young elven princess who grows bored with the monotony of life around her. With a desire for adventure, and a need to find an old friend, Irek of Grevacia, Princess Analise Alehandra Tamira embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Unbeknownst to Analise her father, Lord Marcus Scipio has many enemies lying past the veil lands in the Qaterlain. Soon Analise finds herself lost within the Draconic city of Akirex’Xal where a barbaric King, Oarxxas Va’ie takes her captive. Will Queen Tri’Shena, and King Marcus ever see their beloved daughter again? Find out in this premiere book in the Tamiran Legacy series.

I found the book really enjoyable with great characters and story line. It was very well written with each chapter holding my attention right up to the very last page.  I would certainly be reading more books by this writer. 

I would like to thank NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book which I am sure both middle grades and young adults will love it.

ABOUT – The Rebel Hearted Writer

Sal Marie Johnsonf

https://saimariejohnson.wordpress.com/all-about-the-author-sai-marie/…

Sai Marie Johnson Poet. Novelist. Crafter of Worlds with Words. A creative writer born in the majestic State of Oregon, where she says her imagination took a hold of her exploring the great forests of the Pacific Northwest. Inspired by the wilderness and the liberalism of her birth city, Sai Marie began telling stories long before she could ever write them down.

 

Available from: www.amazon www.amazon.ca.  www.kobo.com and other fine bookstores.

variety-village2

  • Events & Volunteering – Variety Ontario

    Would you like to host a 3rd party event in support of Variety Village? … Volunteer. There’s always something exciting happening at Variety Village! Want to get involved and help out at an event? Contact Smeeta Sohanlal Volunteer Coordinator 416-699-7167 x 239 ssohanlal@varietyontario.ca. Events … ScarboroughOntario M1N 2G2.

  • Home | Variety Ontario

    Saturday, Sep 18, 2021 8:00am-7:00pm Variety Ontario 3701 Danforth Avenue, Scarborough ON An email can make a difference. Keep up with what’s happening, new programs and communities we’re working in, impact stories, and how you can lend your voice to children and parents who need it most.

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Tweets 

  1.  March of Dimes CA Retweeted

     

    Emerging Youth Consultancy (EYC)@YouthEmerging

    📌Introducing our youth panel 🙌🏾: Has decreased due to ?

    We invite you to learn and relearn youth engagement in a virtual realm.

    Join youth leaders and adult allies as they share best practices and strategies. 🚀

     

    View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

holland-bloorview-hospital

https://www.hollandbloorview.ca/stories-news-events/events/tran

 

We will be updating the boards with the events for the rest of the month in next weeks issue.  

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Dancing Dreams, Where Recitals Are Possible For Children With Disabilities #WATWB

<p>The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit. The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be Eric Lahti, Roshan Radhakrishnan, Shilpa Garg, Susan Scott and Sylvia McGrath.
At Professor Owl’s Book Corner we love to share positive stories of young people who face challenges break stereotypes and shine. At this dance company, children with disabilities can do something they never imagined they could: perform in a dance recital.

Professor Owl’s Newsletter, February March 6th. 2021

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

If you would like to tell us about your goals, ask for assistance or information ~ Just drop Professor Owl a note to professorowl@outlook.com 

 

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Rise of the Red Hand (The Mechanists Book 1)

by Olivia Chadha

A rare, searing portrayal of the future of climate change in South Asia. A street rat turned revolutionary and the disillusioned hacker son of a politician try to take down a ruthlessly technocratic government that sacrifices its poorest citizens to build its utopia.

The South Asian Province is split in two. Uplanders lead luxurious lives inside a climate-controlled biodome, dependent on technology and gene therapy to keep them healthy and youthful forever. Outside, the poor and forgotten scrape by with discarded black-market robotics, a society of poverty-stricken cyborgs struggling to survive in slums threatened by rising sea levels, unbreathable air, and deadly superbugs.

Ashiva works for the Red Hand, an underground network of revolutionaries fighting the government, which is run by a merciless computer algorithm that dictates every citizen’s fate. She’s a smuggler with the best robotic arm and cybernetic enhancements the slums can offer, and her cargo includes the most vulnerable of the city’s abandoned children.

When Ashiva crosses paths with the brilliant hacker Riz-Ali, a privileged Uplander who finds himself embroiled in the Red Hand’s dangerous activities, they uncover a horrifying conspiracy that the government will do anything to bury. From armed guardians kidnapping children to massive robots flattening the slums, to a pandemic that threatens to sweep through the city like wildfire, Ashiva and Riz-Ali will have to put aside their differences in order to fight the system and save the communities they love from destruction.

I really loved this book, as it  was very well written, with a great fast paced storyline, and great characters that kept me interested right to the last page.

I would like to that NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book for you.

Available from: www.amazon www.amazon.ca.  www.kobo.com and other fine bookstores.

We will be updating the boards with the events for the rest of the month in next weeks issue.  

 

 

Professor Owl’s Newsletter, February 13th, 2021

~~~~~~~~~

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

If you would like to tell us about your goals, ask for assistance or information ~ Just drop Professor Owl a note to professorowl@outlook.com 

l like you are there living it. It gives some historical background into the differences between Canadian and American laws in the 1850’s.

About the author

Christopher Paul Curtis (born May 10, 1953 in Flint, Michigan) is an American children’s books author. He is known for the Newbery Medal -winning Bud, Not Buddy and The Watsons Go to Birmingham – 1963. Many of his books are set in Flint. The latter was adapted for a TV movie of the same name, Sep. 3, 2019

Alma mater: University of Michigan–Flint

Genre: Children’s literature, especially historical fiction

Notable works: Bud, Not BuddyThe Watsons Go to Birmingham – 1963Elijah of BuxtonThe Mighty Miss Malone

Occupation: Writer, speaker

Something for the whole Fam JAM!

📅 Monday, February 15
 Time 10:00am  |  Duration 40mins

One of the silver linings of this pandemic is that we have so many different ways to stay connected. Just because we can’t see each other in person doesn’t mean we can’t stay in touch, be social, live, and laugh together. 

We’re sad we can’t host you for this year’s Family Day but we prepared something special for you. Coach Jill along with Coach Eric filmed a fun video to get you and the family moving this Monday. Save the date!

💻 TUNE IN
 facebook.com/VarietyOntario
youtube.com/c/VarietyOntario

A teen’s guide to finding the strength to overcome challenges #WATWB

The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be: Sylvia McGrath, Simon Falk,Shilpa Garg, Mary Giese and  Belinda Witzenhausen.
 

At Professor Owl’s Book Corner we love to share positive stories of young people overcoming health challenges.

 

Professor Owl’s Book Corner, January 20th, 2021

When the world says “Give up.”

Hope says “Try one more time!”

Welcome back to the new Professor Owl’s Book Corner, after listening to our subscribers who found our newsletter a little too long, we have decided as of this month, instead of our usual newsletter we will be posting a new shorter version, but it will be posted every week on a Wednesday.  We will be keeping some of your favourite content such as our “Book of The Month”,  “The Writers Corner,” “Literacy” and “Community Boards” along with a couple of new sections. They will, however,  be a little shorter in length than before  but hopefully still of interest and of help for you.

We realize that with Covid19 some of you are now using online classes.  So, we have gathered some information on programs to help and online help when you need it. 

We will also list a few places to go for information like homework help and videos to show how to fix most problems.  We hope you enjoy and like our new edition.

Homework help!

After an extensive check I found that most Libraries in several countries offer homework help for all age groups and subjects. 

I have also found another place where I go to online whenever I need to learn anything new or fix something,  that is ”YouTube” they have lots of videos on many different subjects. Check out our future newsletters for more ideas and sites to help you learn.

Online learning

Legendborne

byTracy Deonn  (Author) 

Filled with mystery and an intriguingly rich magic system, Tracy Deonn’s YA contemporary fantasyLegendbornoffers the dark allure ofCity of Boneswith a modern-day twist on a classic legend and a lot of Southern Black Girl Magic. 
 
After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus. 
 
A flying demon feeding on human energies. 
 
A secret society of so called “Legendborn” students that hunt the creatures down. 
 
And a mysterious teenage mage who calls himself a “Merlin” and who attempts—and fails—to wipe Bree’s memory of everything she saw. 
 
The mage’s failure unlocks Bree’s own unique magic and a buried memory with a hidden connection: the night her mother died; another Merlin was at the hospital. Now that Bree knows there is more to her mother’s death than what is on the police report, she will do whatever it takes to find out the truth, even if that means infiltrating the Legendborn as one of their initiates. 
 
She recruits Nick, a self-exiled Legendborn with his own grudge against the group, and their reluctant partnership pulls them deeper into the society’s secrets—and closer to each other. But when the Legendborn reveal themselves as the descendants of King Arthur’s knights and explain that a magical war is coming, Bree must decide how far she will go for the truth and whether she should use her magic to take the society down—or join the fight. 

This was a fast-paced fantasy story, with great character’s and exciting plot and very beautifully written. 

I found it to be a great read and once started could not put it down until the very last page. I would like to thank NetGalley for the opportunity to read this great book for honest review. 

About Author

Tracy Deonn is the New York Times bestselling author of Legendborn and a second-generation fangirl. She grew up in central North Carolina, where she devoured fantasy books and Southern food in equal measure. After earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communication and performance studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Tracy worked in live theater, video game production, and K–12 education. When she is not writing, Tracy speaks on panels at science fiction and fantasy conventions, reads fanfic, arranges puppy playdates, and keeps an eye out for ginger-flavored everything. 

Tracy is a champion for diversity and representation in science-fiction and fantasy literature and media. And when Tracy’s mother told her that the women in their family were Black Bene Gesserits, she believed her. 

Join us next Wednesday for our next Blog,

4 Stories About Overcoming Disabilities#WATWB

The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be:

Damyanti Biswas,
Lizbeth Hartz,
Shilpa Garg,
Mary J. Giese, and Sylvia Stein,