Story Challenge Day 8: Broken Brain Blues

My thoughts are jumbly,Tumbled around. I can’tPin them down, andMy brain hurts… My hair is pulled back,To help me think better,And it usually works, butMy brain hurts. I’ve scheduled and rescheduled,Checked and re-checked,Emailed and emailed, andMy brain HURTS. I’ve played whack-a-moleWith all my to-do lists,Trying to get through butMy brain HURTS!

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”

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: 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…

“I Feel Like a Real Writer” – Guest Post

Friends, I’m so excited to tell you that I am now a contributing author on the Two Writing Teachers website. This community has helped me grow so much as a writer, a teacher and as a person. Honestly, I could gush for quite a while about how transformative the experience has been. Suffice it toContinue reading ““I Feel Like a Real Writer” – Guest Post”

Assigned Work: Growing Up

This May, I’m committing myself to writing student-assigned topics. Some of them might be cut-and-dried, some of them might be bears. And some of them will reveal themselves in the writing. Today’s assignment: What does it mean to grow up? What does it mean to grow up? Of course, I could joke around about the answerContinue reading “Assigned Work: Growing Up”