I carried my miniature plant to school this morning. Walking past our quiet playground, I knew our students would admire and appreciate it. Its uniqueness would encourage them to ask questions. My previous students named the class plant last semester, decorated and took care of it.
Passing beside the playground, I was reminded of the tree stumps that have been purposely buried in the playground sand, with protruding parts of different heights. On the first day of school, I noticed a few of our fifth graders playing on it. The students climbed and jumped onto the surrounding stumps with one girl on the middle stump. I watched them for a while and smiled.
Walking into school this morning, I thought about the possibilities the stumps will generate for our students. Their creative minds allow them to come up with the most innovative ideas. That is when I thought about how simple items can benefit students in many different ways.
I listened to a webinar that completely helped me rethink my story. This short story I crafted in 2020, but felt there was something else it needed to achieve that spark. What I heard was useful and relevant, the kind that interestingly felt like feedback on the work I had done so far.
It made me acknowledge the benefit of feedback and also how being a writer can influence the way I teach and provide feedback to my students.
The webinar has sent me off in a very productive direction. More like a critique partner it has me back on the drawing board, revising and tweaking my story in a way that will be accessible to a wider audience.
I’m a member of a very vibrant and energetic bookclub.
What members bring with them is so thought provoking. The conversations are teeming with connections, life experiences, stories and humour, so much of it. We meet on Zoom from different continents, with our different nationalities and accents. We discuss in a common language.
Having been a participant in different bookclubs I realised how different this format was. I went through the first meeting nodding and thinking, I’m learning so much. Not only was this particular book provocative, but the energy the members brought to the three or four chapters we read was intriguing. So many issues, topics and questions surfaced.
What made the author include this or that?
What was the author thinking?
Why did we have to infer so much?
What exactly was being addressed here?
Sometimes we are led to carry out some more research in order to understand parts of the book.
At the end of our first meeting, I could not wait for the next three or four chapters and the leads that would come from the discussion.
Putting my teacher’s hat on, I plan to set this up for my fifth graders, to get them engaged and ‘fired-up’ to read and enjoy discussions around books.
Browsing through Instagram, I came across a post from one person that led to another. I usually read interesting posts but rarely comment.
This time, the post led me to another. To my amazement it was a challenge, one that I found very inviting, especially at this time of my school year (when my to-do list never diminishes).
A May challenge that asks for one bit of information a day. I found the right title for it, A little piece of me. I thought so, as by the end of the month I would have thought deeply about myself and experienced daily mindfulness at the same time.
I’m glad the post allows us to take a screen shot and answer the questions on our own or with friends. So here’s today’s ‘ask’ below.
I’ll wait till the end of the month to contemplate on all my answers.
During the March slice of life challenge, I collected many words from slicers, words I have never used in my writing. I vowed to use them frequently and today I have been able to dot some of them around, here in my poem about silence.
My weekly visits to R’s garden reveal many new surprises. It really is fascinating the way plants change as they grow. New additions are brought in weekly, so no part of the garden ever stays the same.
My annual March Slice of life, daily writing is no different. I am amazed by what I learn, the different structures of writing, new vocabulary, the variety of feedback I receive and learn from. Like the rich soil the plants in garden receive, I have been exposed to many creative ways of writing. I have been enlightened and this is helping me develop my writing in many ways.
I would like to take the opportunity to thank Stacey and the co-authors at the Two Writing Teachers for the opportunity to slice daily in March, with other educators. I’m growing as a writer and my goal every year is to carry on writing with my various writing groups. My goal is also to ‘just write’ and to try and pop in to slice on Tuesdays. I appreciate this community, for nurturing and providing me with the sunshine required for my writing growth.