Maps that Stretch Minds Winner!

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Reach And Teach was honored to be invited to participate in a contest put together by our friends at ODT Maps. It was called "Maps that Stretch the Mind" and Bob Abramms of ODT announced the grand prize winner, Mr. Darel Shelton of St. Louis Missouri. Here's Mr. Shelton's video entry:


We'll have more news about the other winners here soon. For now, Congratulations!!!! Below are some of our map products from ODT and a few other map-related products we recommend.

Self-Esteem Passport
Self-Esteem Passport
SKU: passport
Price: $6.95


Pacific-centered Peters Equal Area Map
Pacific-centered Peters Equal Area Map
SKU: PCP-20-5x32
Price: $9.95






Animal Quest Globe and Game
Animal Quest Globe and Game
SKU: animalquest
Price: $16.50


Peters World Atlas
Peters World Atlas
SKU: 9783833155604
Price: $29.95 $19.95


Equal Area Map of the U.S.A.
Equal Area Map of the U.S.A.
SKU: usamap
Price: $5.00


Muslim World Past and Present
Muslim World Past and Present
SKU: 3015P-2
Price: $7.00






Unlikely Allies - Waging Nonviolence Success Stories

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Kim Dae JungI remember being glued to the television on the day Kim Dae Jung returned to South Korea. I was at the State Department taking a class on Asian affairs, taking a break from teaching Korean at the Defense Language Institute. Despite Kim's entourage, which had been arranged in the hope that he would not be killed as soon as he stepped off the plane, we were all fearful that he would not last long given the threat he posed to the autocrats in charge of South Korea at the time. He not only wasn't killed, but eventually became president of South Korea.

Back at the time, I didn't know much about nonviolence. Being in the military gave me (misguided) confidence in the power of violence, massive violence, when wanting to make some change in the world. It wasn't until years later that I began to learn about the awesome power of nonviolence and the importance of alliances in order for nonviolent movements to succeed. Some of that learning came from amazing classes I took with George Lakey, then part of Training for Change.

Over the last few years I've had many people question the ability of nonviolent movements to make substantial change. One key to it being possible is learning from successful nonviolent movements of the past AND learning from the people who helped wage them. Waging Nonviolence is helping the world do that and I am honored that they granted me permission to share this latest article with you. 

(Photo courtesy www.kremlin.ru)

 

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Riparia's River Wins Green Earth Book Award

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Riparia's RiverReach And Teach congratulates our partner in peacemaking Tilbury House for their latest award! Riperia's River by author Michael Caduto, and illustrated by Olga Pastuchiv has been selected as a "Green Earth Book Award" Honor Book in the Picture Book Category by the Newton Marasco Foundation who's mission is "Inspiring the next generation of environmental stewards." Congratulations Michael and Olga!

The Newton Marasco Foundatio, which created and manages the award, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to inspire the next generation of environmental stewards. Through youth designed and driven programs, we teach the value and ethics of environmental stewardship and sustainability. They educate and partner with schools, corporations, and communities to reach our nation's children through environmental science, the arts and literature.

NMF, in partnership with Salisbury University, created the Green Earth Book Award to promote books that inspire children to grow a deeper appreciation, respect, and responsibility for their natural environment. This is an annual award for books that best raise awareness of the beauty of our natural world and the responsibility that we have to protect it.

What Reach And Teach Says about the Book:

If only there had been a Riparia to tell kids like me how we could have made a difference in our own towns! This is an incredible story of children discovering that the water they loved to frolic in has become terribly polluted. Soon they learn about habitats, water restoration, and the power they have to make a difference. Empowering and delightful and realistic, this is a great book.

To learn more about Riparia's River and order a copy, click here.

 



Skateboarding for Peace in Tunisia

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When we see turmoil happening somewhere in our world, we often feel helpless, thinking that what we might have to offer couldn't make any real difference. But what if something you were passionate about doing, loved doing, could help make the world a more peaceful place? Maybe you knit. Maybe you golf (yes Steve, I mean you). Maybe you do capoeira. Maybe you're an artist. Maybe you are an avid skateboarder AND an artist... When the Arab Spring got its start in Tunisia with a successful nonviolent revolution, you can imagine the kinds of things that the U.S. government might have thought about sending there to help the people once the government had toppled. Construction materials and equipment, diplomats, doctors and nurses, experts in civil affairs... but can you imagine someone in our government thinking "We should send some skateboarders!" 

Our friends, The Bedouins, were invited to Tunisia to help bring people together and build bridges, through the love of skateboarding and art. They went and their trip was an incredible success. Click here to read about it in the Guardian. 

Click here to help The Bedouins get their film about their time in Tunisia out into the world (they need a few bucks). 

We had members of The Bedouins in our San Mateo shop last year for a fundraiser and art exhibit. We also showed portions of two films they had created. The first was called Smile and it covered Nathan Gray's (Bedouin founder) time teaching street kids how to skateboard in India. The second, Sour, chronicles The Bedouins bringing together Jordanian and Israeli skateboarders. 

During their time in our shop we learned then about The Bedouins' upcoming trip to Tunisia. Now they are trying to raise enough money through a Kickstarter campaign to do final edits on the DVD of that experience and get the DVDs out into the world. 

So now I return to the idea from which I started writing this news. Maybe you're passionate about helping spread the word about the power of nonviolence and unusual ways of building bridges between people. If you are, how about helping our friends get this DVD produced and out in the world? Click here to visit their Kickstarter campaign and consider making a donation.

Check out these clips from Smile and Sour to see the kind of work these amazing people do!  


Click here to purchase a copy of Smile.



Press Release: The Filling Station

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Press Release:

Reach And Teach
178 South Blvd.
San Mateo, CA 94402
Contact Craig Wiesner at 888-PEACE40
For Immediate Release 

Craig Wiesner demonstrates new soap refilling station at Reach and Teach

Derrick Kikuchi/Craig Wiesner, co-owners of Reach and Teach in front of soap refilling station
San Mateo's First Green Filling Station Opens
Bring Your Own Container for Earth-Friendly Soap and Detergent

SAN MATEO, CA - March 6, 2012 - Reach And Teach, which owns a San Mateo shop dedicated to peacemaking, gender equality, and sustainable living, launched a new addition to their South Blvd. store on Tuesday March 6th. Customers are now able to bring in their own containers and fill up on organic hand soap, earth-friendly dish soap, and biodegradable laundry detergent.

"Rather than tossing container after container into the recycle bin, or worse yet, into the landfill, people can stop by our shop and refill their empties, using them over and over again! Plus, they'll be filling up on soaps and detergents that are earth-friendly and produced right here in the Bay Area." said Craig Wiesner, co-founder of Reach And Teach. "People will also be pleasantly surprised at the reasonable prices we're able to offer on these high-quality green products."

Reach And Teach is partnering with Green11, a Noe-Valley San Francisco based company that is one of the pioneers in making earth-friendly products available in bulk. "We were walking by the Green11 shop and wandered in, checked out the products, and were hooked." said Derrick Kikuchi, Reach And Teach co-founder. "We'd been thinking about new ways to make products like theirs available to our customers in San Mateo and were thrilled that instead of having to re-invent the wheel we could bring in experts who had been doing this for years."

Customers at the Reach And Teach shop, located in the Dove & Olive Works Building at 178 South Blvd. in San Mateo, have expressed great excitement about this new addition. "I've been waiting for something like this for 20 years!" exclaimed one recent visitor.

The "Filling Station" was installed on Tuesday March 6th and immediately ready for business. Members of the press are invited to the shop to check it out. Contact Craig Wiesner for specifics.

Reach And Teach created two satirical versions of stories about the first San Mateo Filling Station and had a contest on Facebook to choose the best one (see below for the first version which won the competition).

About Reach And Teach:

Reach And Teach transforms the world through teachable moments with books, music, toys, gifts, fair-trade crafts, and other products that promote peacemaking, gender equality, and sustainable living. The company was founded in 2004 and opened its first brick-and-mortar shop in San Mateo in 2010.

####

The Filling Station [ref: Reach and Teach News Service, March 6, 2062]

Most of the old-timers remember the day they opened the very first filling station in San Mateo. It was quite a thing way back then, not something anyone ever expected to happen outside of big cities like San Francisco.

There usually wasn't much happening on old South Boulevard in San Mateo... one or two people getting their hair done in one shop while their pets got their fur coiffed in the other, a few kids getting piano lessons across the street, while their parents got the lawn mower repaired. Then there was that odd little shop that sold books, toys and olive oil, kind of a strange combination but they also had some wonderful chocolate that I'd found it hard to resist any time I wandered by. This was a typical lazy Tuesday on that quiet little strip between B Street on 16th Avenue and Palm Blvd. by 17th... on that little tiny spec of a street some practical joker had named South Boulevard just to mess with people's minds. "South WHAT Boulevard" people would ask whenever you told them your address, if you happened to live or work there.

But I digress. That morning there was quite the commotion. People were lined up past the GLOW Salon and the Chinese restaurant all the way down to the union hall. "What the heck is going on?" I asked. "They're opening a filling station!" my old chess buddy Phil answered. "A filling station, here in San Mateo?" I was shocked. I could have started singing "Everything's up to date in San Mateo, they've gone about as far as they could go..." but only a few people would have gotten the joke.

Soon the two guys who run the shop opened up the door and shouted "The filling station is NOW OFFICIALLY OPEN!" There was a huge cheer and people headed in. Some of them had big old laundry detergent bottles, others had little tiny hand soap pumps. "So what is this, recycling?" I asked Phil. "Nah. Better than that! You bring in your empties and fill them up right here. Keep on using them over and over and over again. Waste not - want not, that's what my mother always said."

I watched as people walked up to the filling station, picked their product, stuck their bottles and jugs under spigots, and started pouring. It was all "eco-friendly" stuff, organic, biodegradable, green. As soon as I saw that I figured filling up those bottles was going to cost a lot of "green!" My wife had bought a little bottle of organic hand soap once and it cost her nine bucks.

"That'll be three dollars." the clerk told one customer as she handed him her bottle of hand soap. Three dollars?!?! I couldn't believe it. "Hey, how can you do that for three dollars?" I asked. The guy admitted "We're giving folks a discount for the first day. It will be $3.45 cents next time." That still seemed like a good price. "We get the stuff in bulk and you know most of it is water. Why pay to ship all that water all over the country, or even worse, from other countries? We save even more money by eliminating all that plastic packaging."

It all sounded good to me. San Mateo really had come a long way! First we got two great farmer's markets, then everyone got composting and recycling bins, and now we had our very first filling station. And for once we beat Palo Alto and Burlingame to the punch!

I headed home to see what kinds of bottles and jugs I could bring over to the filling station the next time I needed a chocolate fix. Yep, there it was, that $9 bottle my wife had bought. Wouldn't she have a good laugh when I filled it back up for only $3.45!

Nowadays I guess our kids couldn't imagine the way we used to throw away all those old bottles and jugs, or even the concept that we'd send plastic, glass, and paper all the way to China to have it turned into products that they'd ship all the way back and sell to us! Good thing we got that first filling station in the year 2012. Everything really was finally up to date in San Mateo!


UPDATE: On March 6th, 2012, Reach And Teach added a Green 11 Filling Station to its shop at 178 South Blvd. (the Dove & Olive Works Building) in San Mateo, California. You're invited to stop on by and see history in the making. BYOC (Bring Your Own Container).



Reach And Teach Favorite Tilbury House Books in the News

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Riparia's RiverIt always feels great when treasures we've added to our shop get extra-special recognition out in the world. We tell people that every product in our shop has a story behind it, a personal connection for why we chose it and why we recommend it. Adding other people's stories to our own builds up the good karma even further.

So here is news from our friends at Tilbury House about a few of their wonderful books (which we happily carry in our shop so click away and order them). We're blending in a little of our "Reach And Teach says:" comments with the news as written by the newsletter team at Tilbury House.

Riparia's River, by Michael Caduto, illustrated by Olga Pastuchiv, has been named a Green Earth Book Award Honor Book in the Picture Book category.

Reach And Teach says: If only there had been a Riparia to tell kids like me how we could have made a difference in our own towns! This is an incredible story of children discovering that the water they loved to frolic in has become terribly polluted. Soon they learn about habitats, water restoration, and the power they have to make a difference. Empowering and delightful and realistic, this is a great book.

Moon WatchersMoon Watchers, by Reza Jalali, illustrated by Anne Sibley O'Brien, was picked for "Perfect Picture Book Friday" at the Of Thoughts and Words blog of Saba Taylor. An educator and a Muslim, her comments about the book are indeed interesting, informative, and fun. Here's part of her review, but you'll have to go to the blog to find out more about her own childhood and fasting....

"The story touches on something EVERY child goes through, wanting to partake in family traditions and rituals. It doesn't matter whether its Ramadan, Christmas, Deepavali, or Hanukah, children want to be a part of the festivities. Another universal theme of the book is sibling rivalry. What child has NOT had to deal with that! I have two younger sisters and two older brothers!! :D I love that the story ends with Ali, Shirin's older brother being nice to her and that she keeps his secret. The story begins with sighting the moon, which is very important to Muslims. The new moon signals the beginning and end of the month. I love that the moon remains a part of the story. The illustrations beautifully capture the feel and warmth of the family and their traditions. From their prayer rugs, traditional dishes and religious artifacts and my favorite, the picture of the 'hundreds of tiny silvery pieces.' There aren't hundreds of pieces but the illustration is beautiful! The story also highlights the many aspects of Ramadan, fasting and doing good deeds, something I feel is lacking in many religious holidays where consumerism is pushed rather than the more spiritual aspect of the holiday like being and doing good for others, family and community. Shirin learns that doing good things for others is just as important and apart of Ramadan as is the fasting."

Reach And Teach says: What a beautiful and engaging book! Life in a Muslim home during Ramadan... Gee, it looks just like life in a lot of different people's homes as they celebrate special holidays. Of course some things are new and different... exactly how a creator of diversity might have created us. Wonderful.

Sheila Says We're Weird Book CoverSheila Says We're Weird received a nice mention from the Midwest Book Review: "Sheila Says We're Weird is an illustrated children's book that teaches sound environmental practices for families while it entertains. Sheila is a neighbor girl who observes many strange "green" practices in her best friend's family. Shopping at the farmer's market for local foods, composting, using a hand lawn mower, heating with a wood stove instead of a furnace, riding bikes and walking instead of driving, drying laundry on the line instead of the dryer, making sun tea-all of these activities seem weird to Sheila. Yet Sheila seems to enjoy participating in many of these activities with the family very much. Hmmmm, could there be a lesson here? For painless and preach-free environmental education, told especially well with spunky, colorful illustrations, read Sheila Says We're Weird to children age six and up."

Reach And Teach says: I would definitely have thought the family next door was weird if they did the things that Sheila's family does all the time. But eventually, I too would have loved being part of it all. This is a story about a girl who comes to discover the fun of sustainable living by hanging out with her weird neighbors. A terrific way to introduce kids and adults to all the small and large things we can do to improve our lives while helping the planet. Great book!

And, as our friends at Tilbury House say at the end of their newsletter, Please remember to support your local independent bookstore. That's US! And... we have these books available. Click the links to learn more and buy them.



Ivy Wants You To Know About HR 32, the Homeless Children and Youth Act

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Hi everybody!

My name is Ivy. That's my first name. My family name is Bly. I'm eleven years old, and I'm homeless. My mother died when I was young, and I'm lucky to have my dad. We're both homeless. We got evicted from our place last November. Mostly, we sleep in the Presidio, a park on the west side of San Francisco. I miss our home. I miss my friends. I miss opening the refrigerator and sleeping in a bed and looking out the window at the rain (cold and rain make a miserable situation even worse). There are too many things to name that I miss. Everyday is a new set of problems. Getting to school is one of them. Most of the time, it's too hard to wash up in the sink at a shelter or find clean clothes or do my homework. If I miss too many days of school, I don't know what my homework is. Since we've been homeless, I've fallen way behind. My dad takes me to the library and makes sure I read everyday. But it's not the same. On days when I do show up at school, I can't tell my friends or teacher that I'm homeless. I'm too embarrassed. A couple of them sense that something is wrong. But they wouldn't ask me. And what could I tell them? I did confide in my best friend, Leon. His family came from Jamaica, and things are sometimes rough at his house. That's why I could talk to him about my situation. Most of the time, I worry and wonder when my dad will find a job again and when we'll live in our own home.

The U.S. Congress has a new bill that I hope will pass. It's HR 32, the Homeless Children and Youth Act, which makes it a lot easier for homeless kids and their families to receive help and services. You can help, too. If you're a grownup, contact your Congressional representative and tell them you'd like them to support HR 32. If you're too young to vote, talk to the adults in your life about HR 32. Help make sure homeless kids get what they need.


Ivy BookIvy is the heroine of Summer Brenner's youth novel, Ivy, Homeless in San Francisco, recently published by Reach And Teach/PM Press. It's the intimate portrait of a homeless child, a story of her trials and tribulations interlaced with humor and wisdom and colorful characters. All kids need to care about homelessness. Ivy's story creates a bridge between those who have and those who don't.

Click here to visit Help Homeless Kids Now, a web site where you can learn all about HR 32 and take action.

Click here if you'd like to learn more about Ivy Homeless in San Francisco and maybe even order a copy.



Shopping With a Conscience: Reach And Teach on Other Voices TV

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Reach and Teach on Other VoicesWhat does "fair trade" mean? How does Reach And Teach select the products we sell? Can you be a "consumer" and still be a good citizen of the planet? We answer these and other questions about life, the universe, and everything on the Peninsula Peace and Justice Center's Other Voices TV show.


Other Voices TV: Shopping With a Conscience from PPJC Videos on Vimeo.



Welcoming Schools Coming to A School Near You

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Welcoming SchoolsReach And Teach is thrilled to have been invited to participate in several Bay Area (California) gatherings designed to help create more inclusive environments in schools. Our Family Coalition has been working for many years to make ALL schools welcoming places for ALL children, with a particular focus on children in GLBTQ-led homes. Click here to check out Our Family Coalition's web site. 

Through these events, we've learned about the Welcoming Schools program, which is working to help make schools across the United States more welcoming of all children. Here's how they describe themselves on their web site:

Welcoming Schools is an LGBT-inclusive approach to addressing family diversity, gender stereotyping and bullying and name-calling in K-5 learning environments. Welcoming Schools provides administrators, educators and parents/guardians with the resources necessary to create learning environments in which all learners are welcomed and respected.

The Welcoming Schools Guide offers tools, lessons and resources on embracing family diversity, avoiding gender stereotyping and ending bullying and name-calling. The primer version of the Guide, An Introduction to Welcoming Schools, is a 93 page resource available for download in its entirety.

Welcoming Schools has been piloted and evaluated in three school districts in Calif., Mass. and Minn. With the completion of the pilots, the project will move toward broader distribution of the Welcoming Schools Guide.

Initiated by a group of parents and educators to meet the needs of students whose family structures are not well represented or included in school environments, Welcoming Schools is also a response to educators who have asked for tools to address bias-based name-calling and bullying. Additionally, it offers a wide range of resources for school administrators and educators to support students who don’t conform to gender norms.

We here at Reach And Teach have checked out the curriculum and the other resources Welcoming Schools has to offer and feel they are terrific. While we've had a great set of resources for gender equality / GLBTQ inclusion in our shop, Welcoming Schools introduced us to a lot more resources we didn't know about. We're starting to gather them under our one virtual and brick-and-mortar roof so that parents, teachers, and others working with children and youth can easily order these resources (without having to go to you-know-where....).

These are the products we've gathered so far. BUT, the resources are even MORE useful if used in coordination with the Welcoming Schools program. So go to their web site and learn more! 

Operation MarriageAnd... the team at Welcoming Schools has a copy of our newly published Operation Marriage and we're hoping that it will soon be added to their list of recommended resources. 


One
One
SKU: 978-0-9723946-4-2
Price: $17.95


Say Something
Say Something
SKU: 0-88448-261-8
Price: $7.95


10,000 Dresses
10,000 Dresses
SKU: 978-1-58322-850-0
Price: $14.95


One of A Kind Like Me - Unico Como Yo
One of A Kind Like Me - Unico Como Yo
SKU: 9780985351410
Price: $15.95


And Tango Makes Three
And Tango Makes Three
SKU: 978-0689878459
Price: $17.99


Riding Freedom
Riding Freedom
SKU: 978-0439087964
Price: $6.99


In Our Mothers House
In Our Mothers House
SKU: 978-0399250767
Price: $17.99


I Am Mixed
I Am Mixed
SKU: 9780578110875
Price: $14.99


King And King
King And King
SKU: 978-1-58246-061-1
Price: $15.99


A Tale of Two Daddies
A Tale of Two Daddies
SKU: 9780981971469
Price: $8.95


Muskrat Will Be Swimming
Muskrat Will Be Swimming
SKU: 10 0-88448-280-4
Price: $7.95


Crow Boy
Crow Boy
SKU: 978-0140501728
Price: $6.99


Pinky and Rex
Pinky and Rex
SKU: 978-0689823480
Price: $3.99


Phoenix Goes to School
Phoenix Goes to School
SKU: 9781785928215
Price: $15.95


Geography Club
Geography Club
SKU: 9780060012236
Price: $9.99


The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World
The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World
SKU: 978-1416949725
Price: $5.99


Tough Boris
Tough Boris
SKU: 978-0152018917
Price: $7.00


The Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
The Confessions of Charlotte Doyle
SKU: 978-0380714759
Price: $6.99




Teaching Tolerance Recommends

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Teaching ToleranceTeaching Tolerance magazine is one of the best resources we know of for teachers and others who work with children. The magazine is free to educators and includes incredibly well written articles and a wealth or resources.

This issue focuses on dating abuse and the many ways teachers can help students avoid - or get out of - destructive relationships. Also, look for articles on creating healthy sports rivalries, encouraging young activists and dispelling stereotypes about low-income students.

Click here to visit the Teaching Tolerance web site to read the issue online. 

Reach And Teach is proud to say that several of the products we've created have been recommended by Teaching Tolerance. We're also pleased to note that many of their other recommendations can be found in our shop in San Mateo or on our web site. In the coming weeks, we'll be stocking up on more of their recommendations from the last few issues of the magazine. We'd like to be your one-stop-shop for Teaching Tolerance recommendations. 

Below are some of the products we already have available. 

CIVIO, A Civil Rights Game
CIVIO, A Civil Rights Game
SKU: 9781604863444
Price: $14.95


Spot It Sports
Spot It Sports
SKU: spotitsports
Price: $12.95


Say Something
Say Something
SKU: 0-88448-261-8
Price: $7.95


My Princess Boy
My Princess Boy
SKU: 978-1442429888
Price: $17.99


The Lunch Thief
The Lunch Thief
SKU: 978-0-88448-311-3
Price: $16.95


Rethinking Popular Culture and Media
Rethinking Popular Culture and Media
SKU: 9780942961485
Price: $18.95


Moon Watchers: Shirin's Ramadan Miracle
Moon Watchers: Shirin's Ramadan Miracle
SKU: 978-0-88448-321-2
Price: $16.95









Green America approved