Most Popular Blog Posts of the Year

As we finish 2011, I thought I’d share the most popular posts of the year and chat with you about 2012.

Like last year, January will be all about learning and education topics. And, last year was a dozy for me because of what I wrote in January. If you are new here, you can start with this seemingly innocent post which started an avalanche of uproar in my life, much of it I haven’t even told you about. Sigh. Because you know, advice of my lawyer and all . . .

Google analytics said these 2011 posts were quite popular traffic-wise. Did you get to read them? Which were your favorites?

1. A Backyard Obstacle Course for Your Kids

2. What is a Constructivist Classroom?

3. Best Children’s Books for the iPad

4. 10 Best Educational Apps for the iPad

5. 8 Reasons to Let Your Kids Read Comics

6. Best Children’s Picture Book Spring 2011

7. The Walls of an Exemplary Second Grade Classroom

8. Is My Child’s Teacher a Good Teacher?

9. What Should My School’s Reading Instruction Look Like?

10. Best Educational iPad Apps  Summer 2011

Next year — do you want more or less of anything here? More activities, more book reviews? Keep it the same? What topics are you pondering and want me to write about? Anyone you’d like to see write a guest post?

I have to be honest, December’s reviews and giveaways made me never want to do a giveaway again. I wanted to give you some cool swag but unless I hear otherwise, I probably won’t be doing many giveaways in the future. It’s a ton of work with very little payoff – and I can’t decide if they are good or annoying to you. What do you think? (I’ll still do reviews of things I love and want to share though. Can’t help myself.)

In case you missed my favorite books for your 2011 nightstand, please read them and tell your friends to read them, too.

Push Has Come to Shove

Smart Parenting for Smart Kids 

Mind in the Making


Finally, will you please leave me a comment and tell me what you think about any of this or just to say hello? Especially if you haven’t before – comment here or on Facebook. I know you’re out there reading — yes, you. Lurking at your computer.  . . :) Google analytics sees you . . . And Imagination Soup has over 4,000 subscribers . . .


  1. Erin says

    I love your blog and I always get new ideas from it. I think the posts about writing are my favorite. The ones that stick in my head from last year are using stickers as story ideas, the importance of thank you letters with ideas for different ages, and the one about codes. I also enjoy the book reviews and lists. I can understand how time consuming giveaways are but I would still love the reviews — I bought a Rive water bottle as a gift because of you and have Pizza Mania on a list of games to buy. I appreciate all the time you spend writing and your perspective. I would love to read more about organizing spaces in your home for writing and activities.

    • says

      Erin, you made my day- I feel like Sally Fields in her Oscar acceptance speech. Thank you for taking a moment to share your thoughts, it really helps me to know that I’m not talking to myself, that not only are you reading but you like what you read. I could just virtually hug you right now. {hug} :)

  2. says

    Ditto to that! I feel that writing is so important but I don’t really know how to do it at home so I find your ideas invaluable and fun!

    I find all your posts to be both interesting and valuable — I especially love your product reviews on books, toys, and apps. There is SO much stuff out there that I like to see what makes your screen. Then I tend to buy one on the list (at least).

    Your blog is truly an inspiration to me. Both to be a better parent (education at home that is also fun!) and to be a better blogger! I am looking forward to what you do in 2012.


    ps I like your guest posts, but the ones that you write are my favs.

  3. Hallie says

    O.k…I see a theme…I LOVE your posts on writing, and I’ve really implemented your ideas with my reluctant writer who is good at it when he gets going. This post is timely because I haven’t been thinking outside the box with writing (just getting exasperated), so I’m going to go back and read those posts. I love the posts you write with humility and compassion about the challenges of children who are “outside the box”. Your heartful posts have been so encouraging and inspiring to me and have helped me lift my head up and see the blessing before me. I also like the posts you’ve done on taking care of yourself and not getting lost in mothering. I could add SO many “also’s”, but these are the ones that jumped immediately from my heart! Thanks for all the heart you put into my favorite blog that’s a favorite of countless friends and family!

    • says

      thanks, Hallie. So many times when I write my blogs posts, I imagine YOU because you’re my biggest cheerleader. It means so much to me.

      You’re such a blessing,


  4. says

    I love all the valuable information on your site. One of my favorite articles is The Walls of an Exemplary 2nd Grade Classroom. If you could see my classroom walls now! Thank you for all the help. :)

  5. says

    Melissa, I never read that January post because I started reading your blog after that point. As a former teacher myself, that post makes me sigh deep sighs. One big reason that I decided to homeschool was that I knew there were teachers like that out there (because I taught with some) and I knew I wouldn’t be able to cope with one of my kids being stuck like that for a year. I can’t imagine it. Hope things are better this year.

    On to favorite posts: I loved the comics post especially! You know that writing is a particular passion of mine; I like posts that help parents find fun ways to incorporate reading and writing into their days. Literate kids have such a leg up in life–not to mention an outlet that offers deep joy. You’re so good at helping parents see how to make that happen in little ways. Please keep those posts coming!

  6. says

    Wow, I just discovered your site. What a treasure trove of information! I’ve done a little browsing and have found lots of things of interest especially related to reading and writing. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Colleen says

    I, too, just found this site and have already downloaded some of the “Best iPad Apps” from the list. My 3-year-old LOVES the “Monster at the End of the Book” and my 8-year-old loves the Rock ‘n’ Learn multiplication raps! Thank you! I will say that The Walls of an Exemplary Second Grade Classroom makes me sad as my second grader doesn’t have anything CLOSE to this happening in her class, so I have taken it upon myself (a HS math teacher!) to assist her in writing and reading (Lord, help me!!). I will be coming back to visit this site frequently!

    • says

      Welcome! Sorry to hear about your daughter’s classroom experience. Sounds like you’re doing everything you can to enrich at home! I think you’ll find lots of good ideas for reading and writing at home here. :)

  8. Kris says

    I love your blog! As a former teacher turned stay at home mom, I have found several of your posts interesting and useful. I especially enjoy your book recommendations for children and myself. I would love to see more information on motivating readers as, much to my surprise, I have a 9 year old daughter who would prefer to do anything but read at home. Thanks for sharing your great ideas!


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