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The B.S. Years (Before School): Setting the Stage for School Success

by Joanne Dillery


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This is Joanne’s first book, but not her first foray into the world of education. For thirty years, she was an elementary school teacher, reading resource specialist, ESL instructor and Consultant for Success for All – a whole school reading/language/arts/program.

It is her opinion that learning can and should start with conception and offers a program that has parents starting to influence their children form pregnancy to the time they start elementary school.

In the BS Years (Before School); Setting the Stage for School Success, anyone who cares about the education their children receive will want to take a look at this book.

This is what they are saying: “Joanne is an outstanding educator who goes above and beyond the ordinary. She’s a fine person as well. I have known Jo over 65 years!” Diane Goon, Retired Educator, Independent Writing and Editing Professional

“Jo has written a book that is chock full of great advice and it will give your child the skills he or she needs to be a successful person. I can’t recommend this book enough to parents.” Diane McKern, Retired Elementary Teacher and Property Manager

“Many of us put the education of our children entirely in the hands of teachers. Jo teaches us in this book, that parents are the first and best teachers their children will ever have. She is giving parents the tools to help their children thrive in school and in life, and the validation that as parents, they can do it better than anyone else. She shows us that by giving children a voice, teaching them to question, and to value their ideas and contributions, is to raise wonderful, thoughtful people. Raising children to think critically, to believe in themselves, and empower them to be conscious, life-long learners. What a gift!” Peg Bulger

We do live in an amazing time. Whatever we might be interested in can be researched and investigated immediately. This allows our knowledge base to grow steadily with exploration. It is surprising to think about the number of times I find myself headed to the computer so I can “Google” something. The only danger I see in utilizing media is if we fail to strike a good balance in our daily lives. We do need to see it as a tool and not let it become the center of our universe! What we should do is take advantage of The BS Years and media to get our little ones set up to make the most of when their “formal” education begins. That is really my reason for writing this book- I know we can make a difference.

Books-my favorite thing- Hopefully, you will start reading to the baby the minute you are pregnant and will never stop. It should be a regular part of every day from early pregnancy on. When I was a Reading Specialist parents would always ask what they could do to help their child do better in reading. It seemed like they were expecting some highly technical suggestion and seemed surprised when my answer was…read WITH them - not just TO them. Plus, I would add to parents, have them share in the reading- it should be an interactive experience. Be very sure that it is not just mom that does the reading- everyone around can join in.
And, it doesn’t matter what you read because you mainly want them to hear your voices and when the pregnancy is further along they will. You have nine months plus birth to five to make a difference for your child, so make the most of those BS years. I know that these behaviors will have an impact as I experienced it over my thirty years of teaching.
Now, you will need to determine what you want the next steps to be to prepare your child’s educational foundation. This is your time to create the ultimate learning environment and make a difference for the success of your child’s school career. Get to know your child’s learning style because this will make her progress easier and learning more meaningful. I am a visual learner, some of us are auditory, other’s are tactile. Captivate your child's interest by knowing their style.

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