A Sampling of
Years of Writing
Phyllis J. Lehman
My Writing Portfolio
A Treasured Collection
I love writing. I love words.I love using a pen.
I love communicating through the written word.
It is so clean; so precise; so robust.
It holds such POWER.
Learning the Craft...
I am a big believer that the only way you learn how to write is in a safe space. You need to be relaxed and and feel secure; not a hint of defensiveness. In that way, the ideas and words flow easily. That is why I am such a fan of the writing workshop. Here is an article I wrote on the subject. Though the focus is on children, the methods can be easily adopted to all age groups. Written in 2012, the ideas and principles are still true today.
Writers’ Workshops: Revisited and Updated
“Children want to write.” That was the assertion of Donald Graves, one of the forefathers of the writing workshop method, years ago (Writing 3). He also felt strongly that we underestimate what children can do. Nancie Atwell, another major proponent of writers’ workshops still maintains that everyone has the ability to write and she attributes the success of her students to “their hard work [which] made significant writing happen” (Middle 14) rather than the raw talent that others attribute good writing to. As educators, we need to be mindful of this and make sure that students do just that - work hard to achieve the best writing possible. Yet, educators today are still struggling for ways to effectively teach students how to write.
Writing is integral to both academic and professional success. This is not just the belief of those of us in the teaching profession, but is a firmly held belief of both parents and students alike (Pew ii). According to the 2008 Pew poll on Writing, Technology and Teens, the vast majority of parents and teens, 83% and 86% respectively, feel that the need to write may well be greater today than ever (iii). As such, the earlier we can get children to write well, the smoother their path will be in elementary, middle and secondary school and beyond. Of course, this begs the question as to how.
I Developed a Digitial Platform
The Junior Writing Workshop Website
Writing Samples from David York Agency
The Internet, Social Media & the Elderly
Many might think that social media is the exclusive domain of the younger generation. However, many of our older adults have enthusiastically adopted it to keep up with the times as well as their old acquaintances and younger family members. Grandparents are becoming proficient in alien things like Skype and Facebook and liking it. It has become a healthy emotional outlet and word of its benefits has spread like wildfire among the elderly.
It’s something that we never associate with the elderly, but it does, in fact, exist ---- substance abuse. According to the NYS Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS), this “hidden national epidemic is diagnosed in only 37% of those age 60+ suffering from addiction. Many organizations have new guidelines for doctors and health professionals to screen every patient for alcohol and drug abuse.
With Mother’s Day approaching and May being Older Americans month, I started thinking about caregivers at the beginning and at the end of life, for those young and old. People most often associate caregiving with the harried young mother who has no time to shower or get dressed as she feeds, bathes and runs after little ones. However, those who care for seniors are often just as stressed, pressed for time and tied to their charges.
Caring for aging loved ones was never an easy prospect......
Should I Move My Elderly Parent?
Ah.. to this there are no easy answers. There are situations where the need to move seniors from their comfortable home is not altogether apparent, nor are its benefits.
There is a pervasive attitude that moving a senior brings on Relocation Stress Syndrome and Transfer Trauma which describe the ill effects of moving on the elderly which may result in declining health and even fatality. As such, children face the decision of whether to move an elderly parent with trepidation.
See Promotional Material I Wrote and Designed
Musings of a Wordsmith
Where do words come from? Who made them up? Ever wonder what it would be like to make up your own words.....
Here is a fictional account of the end of the world by a survivor 50 years after it happened. There has been a catastrophic war and only the island of Manhattan has survived.....
I made up 141 new words! See if you can guess how they were created before looking at the footnotes!
It’s been 50 years now since the Gartuous Civicide of 2020. Hard to believe the flow and pace of our tragistory. Everything has changed since then. I feel like our youngizens don’t know our vivihist. It is so important to understand and appreciate how we got here; the tragivents that got us to this point. The utopia we now have enjoy was paid through the hefty price of crimsonia.
At Your School?”
There I was all set for the big re-launch. I had spent the last 20 years in a seemingly endless stream of pregnancies, on demand breastfeeding, baby food mills with forays into organic foods, a stab at continuum parenting, dark of night hunts for any empty bed in which to grab some zzz’s and on and on. I made the decision two decades ago to interrupt my corporate career and stay home full time with my kids.
A Touching Shocker!
Who Will Bring Me Food in My Old Age ???
There I was, the Mommy who takes care of everything, lying weak and prostrate in the hotel bed (though, of course, I was perfectly coiffed and impeccably dressed).
My Up the Sandbox Moment...
(Oh so far from the playground)
I didn’t expect it at all. I am a very meat and potatoes type. I don’t mince words nor do I suffer fools very well at all. So, when I had this outer body mother experience, I was so taken by surprise that I actually felt compelled to take pen to paper to record it.
Mathew Arnold's “The Study of Poetry”
In his introduction to the book The English Poets published in 1880, Matthew Arnold laid out his views regarding the importance of high quality poetry and how essential poetry is for sustaining the world (Arnold, paragraph 2). He astonishingly asserted that poetry is to be prized above all else and should carry more weight than religion, history and philosophy. While this premise is in and of itself highly specious, Arnold went on to say that the poetry must be of a “high order of excellence” (Arnold, paragraph 3) in order to accomplish this lofty goal. Excellent poetry must supplant religion and philosophy because it is of “a higher truth and a higher seriousness” (Arnold, paragraph 12). This begs the following questions: why is poetry so important; what exactly constitutes excellent poetry, and who exactly decides on the criteria by which it is judged to be of this caliber?
Dual Perspective Analysis of
“Wedding Day” by Roberta Silman
The plot begins with a young woman contemplating a spider web on the front porch of her home. The house behind her is all abuzz with preparations for her wedding which is to take place there that very day. There is an underlying disappointment by her and her fiancé’s choice of venue, but the family is committed to make it a joyous event even if it is not a full blown traditional Jewish wedding taking place in a synagogue and catering hall. It is told from a first person narrative and we are introduced to her parents, sisters, grandparents, fiancé, in-laws, rabbi and family friends all from her perspective as she prepares, dresses and the guests arrive. The plot ends with the modest wedding feast over, the heroine bidding farewell to her parents and the young couple on their way to their new life.
See how I analyze this short story from a Feminist and Marxist perspective for a graduate English class entitled Critical Theory of Literature.
Influence of Early Irish Immigration
on New York City English
It is ironic that immigrants that were met with signs that said “No Irish Need Apply” would come to be known as some of the most hard working and achieving citizens in the history of the United States. They contributed mightily to our young culture and their hard work ethic is part and parcel of the American dream and experience.
Explore it by clicking on the image below
"What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?"