Every Saturday Ruth Ayers hosts bloggers who look back on their week with an eye for moments to celebrate. It is a wonderful way to honor, to notice and celebrate all the good things that happen. Click here and find out how you can start this practice.
Several of my colleagues joined me to learn about blogs. I was so excited to introduce them to some of my favorite blogs. They walked away with a little more knowledge and a list of blog sites. Hopefully they will lurk a bit and maybe even comment. Who knows there might be a future blogger among them. I celebrate my colleagues who are looking for more to bring into their lives and to the lives of their students. Next, twitter chats!
Student-led conferences are beginning. This is a new type of conference for my teaching partner and me. We’ve done only two, but both have revealed a lot about these students and what they need. Bottom line, communication with students is so much deeper when the student takes the lead. Our hunches are clarified and parents seem pleased with the dialogue. One wants me to help him learn to talk in groups. Another expressed her love of story telling but fear of memoir. Little did she know they are really the same thing. I celebrate the first two and look forward to next week’s full schedule.
FITS AND STARTS —
My reluctant writers seem less reluctant. Some of my students are paralyzed writers. They feel they don’t know how or where to start. They are worried: are they doing the “right” thing? Conference after conference, I slowly chip away at their resistance and uncertainty. I sit next to each writer and talk with them about their process, their worries as writers, and slowly they start to move the pen. We find little bits of possibility. We talk about those little bits and slowly, the little bits become classroom mid-workshop interruptions that highlight this writer’s process of fighting writer’s block. For this day, they are a star. I won’t be surprised if tomorrow’s a struggle, but the struggle might be lessened by the memory this week’s success.
My daughter’s re-found love of writing. As a preschooler she had writerly ways. She had voice. She was always writing. I just knew she would flourish in the writer’s workshop environment at her elementary school. Sadly it didn’t happen the way I envisioned. Her passion for writing disappeared.
Now a sophomore in high school, she has found her writerly self in argument writing. That confident writer I saw as a four-year old is back. What started as an assignment in class is slowly creeping into her life outside of school. Our evening at the Beacon House Bistro (a recovery program for alcoholics) has inspired her to write a speech about the program for her youth group. I am so excited for her. She knows she’s good at writing and wants more.
THE NOW —
My dad is home from the hospital. It’s a scary thing to go into the hospital at 93. He has been there before, but this time seemed different. A call from my mom at 1:00 am Wednesday morning was the first big difference. That drive to the hospital was horrific, all the time thinking of what could be. When the nurse said he was fine, I broke down completely. You know the possibility, but not now. Now can be too much to bear. Now he is home. I celebrate the now.