'Ugly seafood shack' at the Inner Harbor is just not...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

September 03, 1998

'Ugly seafood shack' at the Inner Harbor is just not Baltimore

LDR International agrees wholeheartedly with Edward Gunts' critique of the proposed Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. restaurant at Baltimore's Inner Harbor ("A building design that just doesn't float," Aug. 23).

Through the years, LDR's urban designers and landscape architects have helped shape the rejuvenated Inner Harbor, and we concur with each of Mr. Gunts' points. Baltimore has created its own style, exemplified by the National Aquarium and the Harborplace pavilions; there is a genuineness to the quality of this architecture.

Creating an "ugly seafood shack" at the Inner Harbor is not Baltimore.

In addition to the proposed restaurant's inappropriate architectural style, the location does not fit with the harbor's image. Since the beginning, the water itself has been the primary attraction at the Inner Harbor, and the boat slips act as windows from Pratt Street.

There is almost a sacred quality to these slips. If a building obstructs this view we so often take for granted, this quality will be lost forever.

The existing pedestrian bridges have already compromised the slips' functional ability to accommodate ships, but because the bridges are removable, ships can still be permanently berthed there. Placing buildings in the water, however, would destroy the integrity of the slips and, ultimately, the Inner Harbor.

`Donald F. Hilderbrandt

Columbia

F: The writer is director of design at LDR International.

Principal set an example for students, educators

Thank you for your reporting of the most courageous field trip arranged by Principal Goldye Sanders of Harford Heights Elementary School ("Teachers follow in pupils' footsteps," Aug. 28).

The patience, understanding, need for careful preparation and, yes, unfortunate loss of sleep by her teachers, will benefit every child on her watch. I made this suggestion 35 years ago as a rookie teacher from whom, of course, no one wanted to hear.

I have two suggestions for school superintendents, school boards, administrators and supervisors. First, listen to your teachers. They will be able to tell you quickly what course education's next "good idea" will take, how successful it will be, what and who the saboteurs will be, what will be needed from all involved to pull it off with aplomb and whether it is worthy of consideration.

My second suggestion is more personally searching. Educators must give up the idea our society holds so dear that the only people worth listening to are those with an ability to make money, gain political influence and look and sound important.

When they give up that ridiculous notion, the wasted time and energy spent on such egregious egocentric endeavors can be more meaningfully directed.

The teachers under the watch of administrators and the children they teach are the most valuable pieces in the education puzzle. They should be treated with the respect they deserve.

My hat goes off to Goldye Sanders. She is not afraid to let her teachers see the realities they will be dealing with this school year.

Lucy Calder

Baltimore

The writer is a retired teacher from the Baltimore County Public Schools.

Forty-minute daily lesson will get results in reading

With a 40-minute home tutorial program done every day, parents can make a significant difference in their children's ability to use print for learning. The program works if parents supervise and stick to the time allotment.

The program is composed of four activities:

The parent makes 20 flash cards using words the child will meet in his directed reading activity.

The parent says the words, and the child repeats them. The parent shuffles the cards and repeats this process three times. Then the parent shuffles the cards once more and instructs, "You say, and I'll repeat." If the answer is correct, the parent checks the back of the card.

For oral reading, parents should have the child read a selection as many times as he or she can in 10 minutes.

For directed reading, parents can buy a children's magazine appropriate to reading level. The child should read the magazine for 10 minutes. Do this every day until the magazine is completed.

For directed writing, children should write for 15 minutes, sharing ideas they have learned. At the end of the week, parents should review the work to see whether the messages make sense, the form is correct and whether words are misspelled. The misspelled words should be placed in a 26-page book called "My Personal Dictionary for future reference."

The above activities should be done every day in a time frame of 40 minutes, Monday through Thursday. On Friday, the student should be tested on word recognition and oral reading and should review writing to correct errors.

A chart should be made to show the percentage of words recognized.

This 40 minutes of daily practice will have a direct impact on a child's reading performance.

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