It’s time of Slice of Life with Two Writing Teachers. Thanks to Ana, Betsy, Beth, Dana, Stacey and Tara for a place to share our writing and our lives. Read more slices here.
A Monday, that faces a day-off Tuesday, makes students a bit off. I made room for that kind of day, planned for it. But there were some unexpected things.
I walked into the office, to distribute paperwork to boxes and desks, to pick up post its and pens; and in the small reception area, usually filled parents and student in transit, are a group of teachers. I remember hearing something about being observed, but I guess it didn’t process as happening today.
I’m introduced as a “guru” of reading/writing workshop. Uh oh. Gulp. Good thing I didn’t know they were coming. I would have stressed. Now I’m just stressed in the moment, which is the good kind of stress. The stress that you don’t over think. The stress that helps in the moment and you just do.
The day was filled with the usual:
read aloud, amazing thoughts,
readers workshop, small groups,
writing, reflections, one-on-one conferring,
lack of tech,
good independent decisions,
The classroom just kind of moves from one thing to the next. Not perfect, ever. There are bumps. We got off course, maneuvered back. Some good moments, some things that didn’t work. The students were who they are everyday. The thing that amazed me were how perceptive these teachers were. They “got” my students. They conferred, took notes, took pictures, listened in.
At recess we talked a bit. And then back to the classroom, for my second group.
At the end of the day,
I found an envelope in my box,
and a purple Uniball pen.
After cleaning the room,
charging the iPads,
collecting some notebooks,
I was speechless.
What she said in her lovely hand written not hit on what mattered most to me. She saw the work, the content sure, but she also saw all the rough edges. The reality of getting students to do the work of reading and writing. It is not Pinterest perfect. It’s real and messy. She saw work that was not complete, that was in process as valuable. She saw students being pushed to independence. Really? You noticed? .
Teachers who notice the stuff that matters, and say so.
What a gift to have and to give.