Story Challenge Day 18: A Nod to William Carlos Williams

So much depends upon Giggly fourth graders Writing new poems And finding their power simplicity. specificity. clarity. there are worse things to teach… Interested in learning more about the March Slice of Life Challenge, or wanting to read more great posts? Head over to the Two Writing Teachers site!

Story Challenge Day 17: Help Wanted

Thanks, Raivenne, for providing me with the inspiration for today’s blog post. (Maybe you should polish up that resume and put your name in the hat!) VACANCY: Personal Muse Position Type: Management Date Posted: March 17, 2022 Location: Inside my brain (hazard pay included) Date Available: Immediate Job Description: Lainie Levin is an aspiring writer,Continue reading “Story Challenge Day 17: Help Wanted”

Story Challenge Day 14: On Letting Things Marinate

I’ve had a lot more writing time with my kids, and it’s one of the things I’m proudest of this year. It’s something kids look forward to, because they get to spend time writing whatever it is they choose. It’s a class session I really look forward to, because I get to be eyeball-deep inContinue reading “Story Challenge Day 14: On Letting Things Marinate”

Story Challenge Day 13: Two Years

Two years. It’s been two years since we packed up our loveys for a couple of weeks of online learning before spring break. Two years since kids, backpacks stuffed to the brink with textbooks and worksheet packets and iPads and school supplies, flooded the hallway with the same kind of excitement and anticipation that usuallyContinue reading “Story Challenge Day 13: Two Years”

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 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 3: Teaching Detour, Told in Real Time

From time to time, folks ask what it’s like teaching a classroom full of gifted-talented children. What does a day in your room look like? This post, I think, says it all. Where it starts, what my intentions are, and where it goes – all of it – puts what I do in a nutshell.

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…