Slice of Life: Ancillary Moments

My teaching life goes by at full speed. I’m continually hit with the ups and downs of learning.  Along with the anticipated bumps, it’s the unplanned tidbits that make my day. They aren’t huge.  It’s the moments in between.

Before school.
“Mrs. Harmatz, I’m in this terrible situation.”

Thinking of all the possible things a nine-year-old could be facing. I asked him what happened.

“I’m nearing the end of Zombie Chasers Number 6, and I hate that it’s ending, but that’s not the bad part,” he said barely taking a breath. “The horrible part is that there are only eight in the series, and I don’t know if there is going to be another one after that.”

How I love this kind of terrible situation. M is the kind of reader who is in love with the silly, gory, fun genre. At this point in his reading career, I must say I feel the same kind of panic. What if number eight is the last one?

“You need to write the author,” I tell him. “We can look for some contact information online.”

“I think I’ll do that,” he said.

During Reader’s Workshop.
K shows me Ralph Fletcher’s Guy-Write, and asks, “Is this a nonfiction book?”

“It’s a book on writing,” I tell him.

“I’m using it in Writing Workshop, It is so funny!”

“Yes, it is. I’m glad you found it.” I just put it on the shelf. That’s all it took for J to find it. And now, I have no doubt it will find its way into the hands of many boys. The finding of this book is perfect: right before we start our independent fiction work.

After school. K  picked up Wonder. “We should read this as a whole class read aloud. And then go see the movie when it comes out as a class.”

These moments bubble up. The ancillary pieces that make my teaching day.

They are born from the just right books that connect to my students. The books that incentivize students. Books that make them think, laugh, and make plans for. I am forever grateful for these writers who make my teaching reading and writing a joyous place to be.

Thank you, Two Writing Teachers for Slice of Life Tuesdays. Read more slices here.