Wednesday, March 25, 2015

If I Light One Candle
            I have a lit candle in my hand because someone had lit it for me.  I see in the dark and can walk with certainty as I find my way home. On the mental plane, I have the power to discriminate what is truthful and what is not.  With an enlightened mind, I am free.
            If I light one candle, I will empower the bearer of the light the  benefits of light without diminishing my own.  With such a simple act, I make my spot brighter than before.  If I light a hundred candles, the place will be all aglow and definitely more brilliant than before without diminishing my own light.  Intellectually, individuals will be seekers of truth endeavoring to live in accord with the universal laws of love, joy and peace.
            Freeing the mind begins with reading.  One cannot truly participate in the community without knowing how to read.  Reading can be taught, reading can be learned.  The joy of reading independently is akin to walking with our own two feet as toddlers for the first time.  From then on, we never stopped walking, we walked and we even ran.
            Find someone to teach how to read and share the excitement and freedom that comes with this achievement. 

For resources, go to      

Monday, February 9, 2015

If You Missed the Workshop, Here is a Recording
The Power Point Presentation is on a Second Document

            The wonder of technology can now bring the workshop to you through a recording made live during the workshop and the Power Point sent as a second document.  Here is how to access the recording and Power Point:
            Go to
            Find a small icon on the upper right hand corner on the menu bar.  That is the download icon.  Click on it and go ahead download the documents.  There will appear two items, an audio recording and a Power Point.  Play one at a time.  The audio runs about 47 minutes.  The Power Point can run as fast or as slow as you want since you control the speed yourself.
            The audio recording starts with the audience singing with me "Don't Let the Rain Come Down."  I go on to describe how the statistics of our country's poor readers is grim.  I then discussed how we can use the set of colorful posters I designed along with an instructional DVD can change the negative to positive.  We can teach someone to read through this simple, affordable, effective, colorful and inviting learning materials.  Take a few minutes a day and in time you will learn all lessons with the spirit of confidence.
            Try it and let me know how you like it.
            You can also order  the set of posters with the DVD online.  Payment through credit cards will be accepted.
            Let's give everybody a chance to learn to read.  Let's read.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Love of Learning

Back from Miami
by Ijya C. Tulloss

         I just got back from Miami, Florida.  I was there with my son, Mark,  to give a presentation to educators and parents of South Florida.  The conference was hosted by Barry University and organized by the Andrew Dora McGhee Montessori Foundation.  We also launched Phase I of our reading program featuring seven colorful posters with an instructional video.
            The weekend was a reunion with former students and friends, a reconnection with Barry University faculty and staff and a spiritual rejuvenation. I was honored for bringing Montessori to Barry during the assembly.  More than 500 attended.
            My presentation briefly described how our reading program works featuring video clips of children involved in the process.  Several students were so surprised to see Melanie on video teaching small children one-on-one.  They saw her as a ten year old sitting in my Humanities class.  They also admired the alphabet chart she drew.
            Selling was brisk.  Several people crowded our two tables.  We could have used two more personnel each with his/her own "square" device attached to an iphone.  We were lucky for Sarah to come and manage our tables while Mark and I were at my presentation.
            The posters standing on easels were so attractive.  People asked who drew the illustrations.  If you missed the event and would like to purchase this reading program for a reasonable price, this is what you do:
            Go to
Home page shows pictures.  On the menu bar on top, you will see Our Story, Products.   Click on Products.
The Products page shows  our posters displayed singly,  as a group and our DVD.  Prices are indicated on each item.  Click on the selected item and proceed to pay online.

Follow-up sessions online will be delivered upon request.  Let's read!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Ask and You Shall Receive

Miracles in Miami
Ask and You Shall Receive

         Once settled in my unfurnished apartment, I had to face a few issues.  First, I needed some furniture. How would I furnish my one bedroom apartment with limited funds?

            A colleague who lived in the same apartment building informed me that the building manager had all kinds of furniture he inherited from his father who recently died.  He stored them in one of the vacant apartments so he would be happy to dispose them as quickly as possible. 

            The manager brought and installed a bed, a dresser with mirror, a dining table with four chairs and two living room chairs.  All he asked from me was $60.  You can’t beat that.  The furniture was of high quality and in good repair. 

            Another colleague lent me a notebook sized TV.  That sufficed for watching the evening news but I needed a bigger picture to watch the Chicago Bears game at noon on  Sundays.   My brother lived 45 minutes away so I visited him every Sunday so we could watch the game together.  We cheered our team as the crowd sang “Bear down, Chicago Bears.”  My brother’s wife did not care for any football so  I made up for her lack of interest with my enthusiasm as a dyed-in-the-wool Chicago Bears  fan. After a few months, I bought a second hand TV from a neighbor moving out of the building.

            The building custodian  introduced me to thrift shops in the neighborhood where I picked up table lamps and decorative items.  I also bought a guitar from him for my son when he comes to visit me.  I was all set and I didn’t break the bank.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Helped by an Angel

            It was about 9:00 in the morning of a work day.  I was driving to work taking the route around the neighborhood when my car stopped right at the intersection.  I could not get it to start again.  With no cell phone at that time, I decided to walk back to my apartment leaving the car blocking the intersection.  It was quite a walk on a hot day to my apartment eight  blocks away.

            I made a phone call to  AAA  (American Automobile Association) roadside service and was told that the service car will be at the site in 45 minutes. 

            I walked back to my car.  I could not find it at the intersection.  Where could it be?  I  feared that someone may have stolen it.  I stood at the intersection and looked around for somebody to talk to. 

            In five minutes,  two men, a father and his son, approached me.  They told me that they pushed my car out of the intersection since it was blocking traffic.  They pushed it into their driveway.  They further explained that my car battery was dead and I needed to replace it.  Meanwhile, they happened to have a spare battery and they took the liberty to take my old battery out and placed their good battery in.  They placed  the old battery on a plastic bag to protect the rug on the floor.  They then instructed me to drive to K-Mart to get a new battery installed, get rid of my old one and place their battery on the plastic bag so I can return it to them. 

            I did as instructed.   I was thankful that a total stranger took meticulous care to temporarily replace my dead battery with one that works so I can drive to K-Mart to get a new one installed.  How else could I have driven to K-Mart with a dead battery?  My car was not stolen after all.  I was helped by an angel who delivered another miracle.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Miracles in Miami
3) I Burnt  the Lawn

            After clearing everything used for cooking rice, I noticed a burnt patch of lawn about one square foot.  It was bare, I could see the ground.  Oh, no, what shall I do?  Of course, what do you expect when you build fire right on the grass?  I have to fix this before the landlord comes back. 

            Not knowing what to do, I drove my car to the university just to see what was going on. 

            The crew from the Building and Grounds Department was working on the grounds.  I wasn’t expecting anybody to be working.  I saw squares of sod piled on top of each other  ready for planting.       From my estimation,  one square  was  the right size to cover the burnt area.  I asked the worker if I could have one small patch of grass.  He said, “yes.”  I thanked him and drove home with one square  patch of grass.

            Wow!  That patch of grass was the exact size of the burnt area, as though it was custom cut.  I placed  the new grass on top of the bare soil.   I could not even distinguish  the original lawn  from the patch.  The patch blended in perfectly with the lawn as though nothing disastrous really happened.  

            I thanked my lucky stars for delivering me a miracle!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Miracles in Miami
2) Feed the Children

            Hurricane Andrew had visited Miami and South Florida in August, 1992.  It toppled down trees and knocked out power lines.  There was no electricity in the house and in the entire neighborhood.  Elementary schools, high schools and university classes were cancelled for two weeks.   My landlord and his family had left the house and taken refuge somewhere else.

            It was a good opportunity to cook rice the old fashioned way with firewood.  I gathered twigs and branches felled by the hurricane.  Within minutes, about thirty children came out from everywhere to join me.  They picked twigs and piled them on top of my pile.

            From my kitchen, I picked out the cooking pan, a box of matches, a small bag of rice and a bottle of water saved before the hurricane.  I found three rocks to create a tripod for my pan to sit on.  I could only build fire  on  the lawn.  To do so on the concrete would be dangerous.  It could explode with the heat and cause bodily harm.

            I built the fire, cooked the rice with water and squatted nearby to watch the  fire.  The children  quietly watched  the process as well.  As scripted, the water boiled, I reduced the number of burning twigs and allowed the water to simmer and cook the rice until it was soft and fluffy. 

            The moment I declared the rice was cooked, all the children ran away.  I thought, they were done watching and were not interested in watching any other activity. Okay, I will eat rice by myself in peace. 

            I went inside my apartment to fetch a bowl and a spoon for myself.  When I came back thirty children had all come back, each with his own bowl and spoon.

            At this moment, I had to perform the miracle of feeding five thousand out of five loaves of bread and two fishes.  I had enough practice doing this from my grandmother, Mama Iyay, who was a master at this art.  They were so happy eating the little that I spooned into each bowl.  Once finished with their hearty meal, they ran back home taking with them their bowls and spoons.

            Children are the greatest.