Saturday, December 4, 2010

Is Your Holiday Shopping Done?


The weeks leading up to December’s holiday break are always busy ones -- full of holiday concerts, parties, and more. For many of us, ’tis the season of holiday shopping, too.

If you’re searching for a unique gift for that hard-to-shop-for person on your list, the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) has an idea for you: check out the NAESP Foundation's online Holiday Auction, now through December 16. Search the NAESP Foundation Holiday Auction Web site for a wide variety of auction items, including sports collectibles, clothing and accessories, tools, and much more.

New items are posted every day. This is a great opportunity to pick up a bargain -- and to benefit a good cause: the NAESP Foundation.

It’s a great way to avoid fighting traffic jams at the shopping mall, too!

The NAESP auction is powered by My School Auctions.

MIDDLE SCHOOLERS CREATE HOLIDAY MUSIC CD

If you’re looking for a great fundraising idea and a terrific learning experience for students, you might do what music teacher Allysa Anderson did this year with her students at Camden-Rockport (Maine) Middle School. Supported by a grant from Youth Arts, a local non-profit arts agency, Anderson and 185 students in grades 5 to 8 created a “Simple Gifts Holiday Songs” CD.

The project that resulted in this CD belies its title; it wasn’t just a "simple" project. Besides creating quality music, Anderson’s students also learned about the production and business ends of the music industry. They toured professional studios -- including those at Main Street Music Studios where the CD was produced -- and learned the ins and outs of marketing a quality product.

Proceeds from the sale of the CD will go back into the school’s music program. But Anderson said the project’s principal intent was to expose students to the music business. “It’s a way to enhance the curriculum, to raise the bar, and raise the rigor,” Anderson told the Bangor Daily News [read the article]. “This has really all been inspired by the children. They are a great group of kids. They’re not only very motivated, they are also very musical.”

Learn more. Read Main Street Music Studios Recording Camden-Rockport Chorus, a blog entry about the holiday CD project.

‘PUZZLED’ ABOUT THE PERFECT GIFT?

If you’re “puzzled” about what to give the puzzle lover on your gift list or looking for the perfect grab-bag gift for the school holiday party, Banana-Grams might be the answer. This month, 10-Minute Banana-Grams! debuts in bookstores everywhere. Based on the bestselling Bananagrams® game, 10-Minute Banana-Grams! joins another popular favorite, Bananagrams! for Kids. Bananagrams! puzzle books provide hours of entertainment as they strengthen confidence and build brain power and thinking skills.

The Bananagrams brand has seen incredible success. Created by a word game-obsessed family of three generations, Bananagrams is a labor of love that that has quickly become an international phenomenon. There are more 3 million copies of the game in print, which has also launched in Spanish, French, Norwegian, and German.

And while we’re in the gift-giving spirit, here is a gift for you -- two free sample pages from the folks at Banana-Grams!
--- Click for a sample page from 10-Minute Banana-Grams!
--- Click for a sample page from Banana-Grams! for Kids

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