Miss Night's Marbles

Musings, mumbles, marvels, and sometimes mockery, live from kindergarten.

Because you asked: Ways to help THAT kid

Oh, my friends. I don’t think anything has ever been more daunting than writing a follow-up post to THAT kid. I never, ever, in a million years, dreamed of the response to that piece, and I’m still trying to figure out how I go back to writing about my dog

This is not the kind of post I would ever usually write, but I’ve had many comments and e-mails in the last few weeks, asking how you can help me, help THAT kid, help kids in general. I am speechless at your generosity and sincere desire to make a difference for children. So, folks, here are some options: the causes that are closest to my heart, and that, to me, make a real difference in children’s lives, every day.

THAT kid: How you can help

THAT kid: How you can help

Charitable Donations

Coppercreek Camp Memorial Scholarship Fund

Click the logo to visit the donation page.

Many of you know that for many years, I worked at Coppercreek Camp, a family-owned sleepaway camp in northeastern California. While it is not a camp specific to THAT kid, it is a place where THOSE kids typically do very well; many of our most “rockstar” campers and teen leaders were in fact THAT kid when they were home and at school. Camp is where I first fell in love with working with THOSE kids. Coppercreek offers a scholarship fund, designated for local children who would benefit from the camp experience.  I would be so honoured if you would consider donating to that fund. You can find more information here.

Kids Help Phone Walk So Kids Can Talk

Ever since the tragedy at Sandy Hook, I have participated in the annual  BMO Walk So Kids Can Talk: a 5km walk to raise funds for Kids Help Phone. Kids Help Phone is a 24-hour crisis phone line, available to children and youth who need help coping with everything from friendship issues to sexual abuse. It is staffed entirely by trained volunteers, and relies heavily on donations to maintain its services. My fundraising page is here. (Note that, while this is the page for last spring’s walk, you can still make donations. I will update the link as soon as the 2015 event is finalized.)


Amazon Affiliate Links

Some of you have also asked how you can help ME, and contribute to my ongoing professional growth and development, as well as to the continuation of THAT kid’s message. Let me first say that your generosity leaves me nearly speechless. How do I possibly respond appropriately? To that end, I have created an Amazon Affiliate account for both Canadian and US Amazon shoppers. It’s really easy: just use one of the links below (or any of the Amazon links on my site) to click through to Amazon, and a small percentage of ANY purchase you make will be added to my account. The funds I raise through Amazon Affiliates will be evenly split between donations to the two charities described above, and my own professional growth endeavours, and I will provide regular updates about the disbursement of the funds.

To shop at Amazon.com, click the banner blow:

To shop at Amazon Canada, click the banner below:

My friends, from the bottom of my overflowing heart: thank you. I am so nervous about posting this, because truly, I am not expecting ANYTHING from you. But, if one of the results of going viral is that more of you might help more kids get programs and support they need, I’m willing to take the risk of you thinking me a sell-out.

I’ll take the risk for THOSE kids, for THESE kids, for OUR kids.

So much love;



Miss Night Mutters. Literally.

First: WOW.

My last post, from just a few days ago —  Dear Parent: About THAT Kid… — has gone viral. 1.3 million hits and counting. It has been featured on the Washington Post education blog, and will soon appear on a few other sites, as well. I’m sharing this, not to blow my own horn, but rather, to THANK all of you, who helped that happen. For a blizzard of reasons, that post has hit a nerve. I am so honoured and touched by the stories that have been shared in the comments, and by the personal e-mails so many of you have sent me. Thank you so much for sharing your stories, for connecting with me and one another, and for spreading that post the full length and breadth of social media in all its forms. Wow. You guys are amazing. A million readers, and all through “organic spread” (which means, I have learned, that there was no paid promotion of the piece). Just you all, spreading it via digital word of mouth. Do you know how awesome that is?

Part of the attention that the post has drawn came in the form of a radio interview that I did today, and while it makes me feel a little bit naked-on-the-internet to share my full real name and school here (where I have always been semi-anonymous), I wanted to share it with you. The host asks some questions that have come up in many of the comments on the blog, and I was so grateful to have the opportunity to answer them.


Miss Night Mutters. Literally.

So, there you have it: my ACTUAL voice, amplifying our collective voice, about being kind, fair, respectful, and compassionate to ALL the children and families in our care.

Thank you guys.  SO MUCH.

And, coming soon, by your request: a follow-up Dear Parent letter, about how teachers are looking after YOUR child in the classroom, when YOUR child is not THAT child.

Love and so many blessings, friends. You amaze me.


Miss Night



All Day PD With Me!

I spent all day today in 4 great PD sessions:
1 – Helping Kids Cope With Anxiety
2 – Bullying and Harassment in Schools
3 – Self-Regulation
4 – Occupational Therapy 101 for Teachers (this was not the real name, but is the best possible description).

In my usual style, I took notes by tweeting. The sessions were SO GOOD that I storified my tweets, just to share with all of you!



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Choosing my own adventures

Holy Jebus, it has been quiet around here for some time, hasn’t it? Believe me, it is NOT because I lack for things to say! Indeed, I have about a half-dozen posts in my drafts folder, coming together in drips and drabs. Thanks for your patience.

In the meantime, some random-but-related updates on what I have been up to, and the various places you can find me (both virtually and live-in-person) in the next little while:

  • I just got back from the Ontario Full-Day Kindergarten Conference, where I presented a whole day’s worth of sessions (you can see details, slides and handouts RIGHT HERE.). It was my first all-day conference gig outside of my own school (I’ve done a bunch of single-session  “appearances” but never 4 sessions back-to-back like this.) If you are reading this because I met you there: Hi! I’m so excited you’re here! Please say hello in the comments! In spite of weather that managed to be both crappy (gray rain snow cold yuck) and disappointing (never really got to experience My First Ice Storm), the conference was SO. MUCH. FUN. Seriously. I loved talking to all of those amazing educators and hearing  about their classrooms and their students and their lives.
  • If you attended any of my sessions: there are blog posts coming, JUST FOR YOU. You asked, I am answering! Stay tuned for (now that it’s in writing, HAVE to do it, don’t I?):
  1.  The wording of the consent I use for my students’ participation in Twitter and Evernote.
  2. Details on my “rainbow centre” system, where kids choose their work for the day.
  3. An extension of “Student Voice and Choice” that gives some examples of specific situations where I have followed kids’ leads, avoided total anarchy, and still met program objectives.
  • I have a few more speaking gigs coming up, and would love to see you at any or all of them. You can find me:
  1. At the ConnectEd Canada conference, right here in my beautiful city, May 24-26. Along with my brilliant friends @learningmurd and @mauimickey, I will be facilitating a session about “Kindergarten As A Model for Other Grades.” Come join us, it promises to be a great conversation. (If you can’t come, but have some thoughts on the subject, please feel free to post them in the comments. We would love to have your input.)
  2. At the I Teach K! National Kindergarten Conference, in Las Vegas, NV, July 15-18. I’m collaborating with my brilliant friends @mattbgomez and @jonfines (yes, ALL my friends are brilliant. I see no problem with this) to present TWO “Tech 2.0 For the Totally Terrified” sessions, as well as sessions of my own about: Evernote portfolios; Self-Regulation; Work Vs. Play in Kindergarten. Matt, Jon, and I will probably plan a face-to-face tweetup at some point during the conference, so please follow all of us to stay tuned. We would LOVE to meet you. If you have have never attended I Teach K, it is an AMAZING event and well worth the cost. Plus, you get to hang out with me! In Vegas!
  3. If  you’d like me to come and do some PD with your school or district or organization, let’s talk! I’d love to come see you. Shoot me an e-mail and let’s see if we can work something out.
  • Did you know you can follow me on Pinterest? True story, you can. I pin a lot of stuff about child development, social media, and classroom life. Fair warning: I also pin things that make me giggle, a lot of ballet-related randomness, some Star Wars stuff, workouts that are too-hard for me, and delicious recipes. And smoothies. I have a whole board just for smoothies.
  • Did you know you can LIKE Miss Night’s Marbles on Facebook? Also a true story. Come say hello over there. I share a lot of articles about teaching, and sometimes climb up on my glitter-covered soapbox to spew opinion. Come join the party!
  • When I came home from Toronto, 2 wonderful things happened: 1 – My lovely sister-in-law had made delicious dinner for me, and 2 – My brother gave me this:

Kindergarten Party

Now, who can tell me about this record? And where can I get a free-to-cheap record player so that I can listen to it?

Ok, I told you my adventures. Now you tell me yours.