I acquired my nickname, Dr DISSECT, in a most unusual way. One semester while working with a group of high school boys, we were learning the Word Identification Strategy from the University of Kansas. With this strategy you use the mnemonic DISSECT to break large words apart. Every student was actively engaged using green, yellow, and red markers and pens to DISSECT (break apart) words that we collected from our content classes and from the game Balderdash. One morning, as I met each student in the hall between classes, I handed them a small card with a word on it, and I said, “Can you DISSECT this word by class?” Little did I realize that this would become a way to connect with each student and create an amazing way to start our class each day. All of a sudden, I found that I needed to wear a jacket with larger pockets for all my words!! Also during this semester, the students were required to dissect a frog in Biology. Well my guys, came back from Biology with the saying, “we like to DISSECT words NOT frogs! This saying quickly became my opening for my classroom demonstrations with students. However, my boys decided that I needed to add to my lesson and during finals they gave me a stethoscope and a white lab coat (for my words), and during the presentation called me Dr. DISSECT. Not only did I use my lab coat and stethoscope with each classroom presentation, I would always state that “Today I promise that we will not get a shot or dissect a frog, but we will learn how to do something more fun DISSECT words. Soon students and colleagues began calling me Dr. DISSECT.

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