February Student Life Staff of The Month

Our Student Life Staff of the month is Devin Snoddy!Devin Snoddy is the Dorm Parent for our girls dorm, Grandin Hall. She has swiftly proven her background in childcare and understanding of neurodiversity makes her an indispensable addition to our team this year. She...

February Academic Staff of the Month

Meghan Collins Morse is an exceptional Arrowsmith Instructor at Brehm Preparatory School, with over a decade of experience in supporting student growth both inside and outside the classroom. With her unwavering dedication and passion for helping students overcome...

January Academic Staff of the Month

Emerick Neitzer is our newest teacher at Brehm Preparatory School, shining a unique light on science concepts for our students.A veteran teacher in the Carbondale community, Emerick stepped into the Brehm family to teach environmental science, chemistry, biology, and...

Student Life Staff of the Month January

Our Student Life Staff of the month is Nolen BecK!Nolen Beck holds two roles within Student Life working actively with the recreation program and is an assistant dorm parent within Jenner Hall. Male role models who offer positive support for students greatly impact...

ELA Newsletter Week 14

It’s beginning to look a lot like finals... One of the most challenging parts of teaching English Language Arts and Literature classes at Brehm is the finals that encompass the end of the term before a long break (once in December before winter break and once in May...


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ELA Newsletter Week 15

Our Mission, to empower students with learning disabilities and differences to recognize andoptimize their potential throughout their lives, has been at the forefront of mymind over the past exciting and eventful twelve days.I am excited to confirm I have accepted the...

Director of Student Life for the Day

During Brehm’s 40th Anniversary Gala, Jace Nelson won the opportunity, through the silent auction, to serve in the role of Director of Student Life for the day.This past Saturday, Jace planned an enjoyable day for the students that allowed them to keep their cell...

Jingle All the Way!

Jingle All the Way! On Saturday morning, a motley crew of our students, faculty, administration, and their friends and family, went to two local assisted living facilities to sing Christmas carols and bring some holiday cheer to the residents there. The student core...

November Academic Staff of the Month

Barb Drew is the embodiment of the Brehm spirit and culture that reminds us that learning, though challenging, can be fun when you have someone who incorporates a strength-based caring approach that builds trust and rapport with students that allows her to tap into...

Oh, the NOVEL-ty of it all!

Oh, the NOVEL-ty of it all!

As we have flown into this 5th week of school (already, can you believe it?), all literature classes are beginning to set in to their first novel studies.

Each of these novel studies will have a specific focus on how the development of the characters within the story directly impact the novel or short story’s plot and the readers’ connections to the narrative. Junior High Language Arts is reading the first of The Guardians of Ga’Hoole series, The Capture. This middle grade fantasy series follows the story of Soren, a Barn Owl who is captured and, along with other owlets, has to find a way to escape and get home to his family. Also in the fantasy genre, Tuck Everlasting, a modern classic that poses the question, is eternal life a blessing or a curse, is the focus in 3rd hour Language Arts. Third hour Literary Strategies class has dove into Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes the story of two friends who share stories of hardship growing up and their journey into young adulthood. This novel addresses some tough issues and always sparks strong discussions in my classes. Meanwhile, 7th hour Modern Literature has turned its attention to Roald Dahl’s lesser known works of fiction: his short horror and suspense stories. This will segue into a collection of Ghost Fiction that was compiled by Roald Dahl himself.


Guardians of Ga’Hoole

Tuck Everlasting


Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes

By Chris Cutcher


Roald Dahl’s Ghost Stories and Short Fiction

Creative Writing has spent the last week working on stories using Rory’s Story Cubes. Each set contains nine six-sided dice that have a character and or action on them. Students roll the dice in their set and then arrange the cubes to organize the action in their own original story based on their roll. I have several different sets of these dice including those that are Harry Potter, Looney Tune, Star Wars, Adventure Time, and Batman themed along with the original one like what is pictured above. This exercise allows the students to learn to take a risk with a topic or action they not usually include in the story or build on an already established character arc to continue their journey. I like to do a couple of these before we move into our unit on the Story Arc which will help them in developing more structure to their writing while keeping in mind the “looseness” of these story cube pieces.


  • Junior High English-Word Play (em-, en-, ento-, -active, scrib-, script); Chapters 1-2 of Guardians of Ga’Hoole with Comprehension Question Discussion; Chapter retellings; Chapter 3 and Discussion
  • Language Arts-Word Play (em-, en-, ento-, -active, scrib-, script); Tuck Everlasting Opinion paragraph completion; Tuck Everlasting Prologue through Chapter 3 Vocabulary Table Building and Sentence writing activity; Collaborative Mad Libs; Tuck Vocabulary Maze Passage
  • Literary Strategies- Word Play (em-, en-, ento-, -active, scrib-, script); Character Development lesson and discussion; Chapter 1 and 2 of Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes; Discussion and Questions
  • Creative Writing-Idiom Word Play (let sleeping dogs lie, left out in the cold, heart’s in the right spot); Writing and Editing Days Roll and Write Creative Prompt; Writing Game-Fold and write
  • Modern Literature- Word Play (em-, en-, ento-, -active, scrib-, script); Who is Roald Dahl?; Lamb to the Slaughter Vocabulary activity and sentence


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