Story Challenge Day 11: The Important Thing

Note: Inspired by Margaret Wise Brown’s The Important Book, I’m working on these alongside my students. Enjoy! FRIENDSThe important thing about friends is that they are friendly.They talk to you,And they go for coffee.They give you thingsAnd go on walks with you, And they show you the good and not-so-good Parts of yourselfYou hide fromContinue reading “Story Challenge Day 11: The Important Thing”

Story Challenge Day 9: Signs of Spring

when I look at a group of kids and realize, “Oh! They’re not third graders anymore. They’re fourth graders waiting to happen.” Or, “Yesterday I was looking at fifth graders. Now I’m looking at middle schoolers.” Really. It happens in a day. They just…turn, transform, evolve.

Story Challenge Day 7: Class Assignment

My fourth graders are experimenting around with poetry. We started out by journaling how we were feeling. I joined them in the writing (and no, I didn’t get distracted this time). Here’s what I wrote: Then I demonstrated my thought process for how I might choose which words go on which line. (More on thatContinue reading “Story Challenge Day 7: Class Assignment”

Story Challenge Day 4: More Dispatches from the Classroom

It was another good day.Yes, I had a lesson plan.Yes, I had objectives for the day.Yes, we pretty much did them.And my students, as always, brought so very much more to the table. We discovered that when ideas stretch across multiple texts, we call those universal themes:-Greed stinks, gives you tunnel vision-Adults are sightless, kidsContinue reading “Story Challenge Day 4: More Dispatches from the Classroom”

Slice of Life Challenge Day 2: Once a Lovey, Always a Lovey

I’ve been teaching a while. Twenty-seven years, in fact. And when you’ve been teaching twenty-seven years, and you keep up with some of your former students, there’s something amazing that happens. You get to see them grow up. You get to see them step into their lives, into the world as adults and selves inContinue reading “Slice of Life Challenge Day 2: Once a Lovey, Always a Lovey”

Slice of Life Tuesday: Class Guest

Yes. My kids are learning about the Middle Ages. And trying their hands at Old English, and Beowulf, and Middle English, and Canterbury tales (just the Knight’s tale, friends!), and Shakespeare, and Noah Webster. All of it. Because kids deserve to wrestle with big ideas and difficult stuff…

Slice of Life Tuesday: Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda

This slice of life could have been about the daily wrestling match that gets fought at five a.m. between my alarm and my brain, or about the importance of having workout buddies who look out for me, who expect so much from me, who inspire me to do better, or about the way time. Slows.Continue reading “Slice of Life Tuesday: Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda”

Slice of Life Tuesday: Writing “Process”

I spent…a LOT of my time writing this weekend.

Between one purpose and another, I probably spent 8-10 hours with my fingers on these keys. All of it was good, and writing in that great a volume has me wondering if I should be expecting more of myself or not. That line between grace and tough love is a fine one, my friends…

Slice of Life Tuesday: The Acknowledgement Section

This post is part of the weekly Slice of Life challenge from Two Writing Teachers. Check them out! Today is the day, in our district, where we tweet thanks or acknowledgements to other teachers and colleagues in our lives. Friends, it would be a VERY long Twitter thread for me to go into all of the manyContinue reading “Slice of Life Tuesday: The Acknowledgement Section”