By Lynn Cloutier

At Touchstones, our customers are at the heart of our operations and program development. Teachers, curriculum supervisors, librarians, and other educators have lots of choices in educational programs, so when they choose Touchstones, we want them to know we’re here to support them! Part of this support includes check-in calls and additional outreach. We ask how they’re doing with their new materials and offer guidance as requested. Many teachers don’t realize until we connect with them how much of our staff time is dedicated to provided training and coaching in schools.

We also reach out with promotional offers and when we have new program materials coming onto the market. Personalized letters to principals and teachers invite them to learn about new additions to our existing series. For example, schools using Touchpebbles Volumes A and B may want to bring in our newest volume, Touchpebbles C, so they can expand their discussion programming to an additional grade of students. From the history of the Maya to folk tales from Iceland, Bhutan, Arabia, Japan and Tibet, to writings by Galileo and Euclid, the lessons contained in Touchpebbles C offer all students the chance to learn by exploring their own thinking and that of their peers. Through the discussion process, students learn to take initiative in the classroom that fosters a greater sense of responsibility and connection to others.

Every time we can share our work with teachers and hear directly from them, we learn more about how Touchstones is making a difference in the world. Of course, we love it when teachers share their Touchpebbles or Touchstones stories with each other and inspire new teachers to bring discussions into their classrooms.

For us, every teacher willing to create a student-centered classroom deserves as much love as we can give. We do our best to promote and share their work through social media, emails, and our newsletters.