Chuck Galey

Author • Illustrator • Teaching Artist • Speaker

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Turning the Page-
   As August has arrived, with it is the heralding of the winding down of summer activities. Across the country in the next couple of weeks, teachers will be reporting back to their classroom and students will be returning to the grind that is fall semester at school.
   Here in Mississippi, it’s really still summer. Fall officially doesn’t start until around September 21st. That means seven more weeks of heat and humidity. Although, I must admit that after the sun goes down, on clear days, the humidity seems to abate a bit. The win is a dry somewhat cooler relief to the sweltering heat.
  As I think of August, I seem to take a lower gear. It’s time to think about fall activities, conferences, book work, art work and travel to and from school visits. It’s a different set of mind.
   However, the beach continues to beckon…


  I’ve been working with Tom Harmon, Executive Director of VSA (Very Special Artists) Mississippi with training teachers Universal Design for Learning. UDL is a set of teaching strategies that cover all learning styles: kinesthetic, audible and visual. With these strategies, arts integration is perfect to work into the lesson plans. Frankly, I don’t know why more school systems adapt this proven technique of teaching. Test scores go up, lessons are retained and students are better for it.
   Today, Tom and I led training at the Magnolia Speech School in Clinton. This school helps those hearing impaired students in their elementary grade lessons. The teachers were open and welcoming to UDL as a strategy to help them teach more effectively.


   Regrettably, while walking today on the Natchez Trace Trail, I twisted my knee. This is not a good sign. It really hurts. I think I’ll have to go to the doctor at the minor med care tomorrow. It also means that I will not be able to be much good at getting around for the next few weeks.


   Went to the MEA (minor med care) today. X-rays showed that there were no broken or fractured bones. We’re going to wait until the swelling goes down. I think it’s an ACL strain or some other connective tissue strain. It’s not a sharp pain, but just a dull ache. I think it needs time, pain pills, ice, heat and more time before it feels any better.
   I’m on crutches, now. It’s hard to get around, but it will get easier.
   Back to the doctor next week.

   Swelling has gone down significantly. Still tender, though. I think it will take some time. The doctor agreed. We’ll give it another two weeks to see what’s what.
   Still on crutches.


Labor Day Weekend
   They say that the Labor Day Holiday is the un-official end of summer. In some ways, I can see that. School has been in session now for a couple of weeks. Football season has started. Yep, all thoughts are now all about the fall. Wal-Mart even has Halloween decorations up for sale.
  I’m getting around much better now. I’m not on crutches, but the left knee is definitely tender. Walking down steps is a bit harder and I have to be very careful. My thoughts are now on physical therapy and strengthening the knee so that I won’t be injured there in the future. I go back to doctor next Friday, Sept. 7.
   I’ve been planning school visits and studio work. With the Labor Day Holiday, my eyes look toward the last four months of the year.