While the world outside seems to be spinning much faster than usual, I took time today to catch up on some missed time with my students and their writing. We meet on our blogging platform. This place where we meet is our digital writing community―one that has become much more important to us than expected these past few days.
Today, I put my worries away for another day and focused my attention on my students and their writing lives. I made my way into our blogging platform, read, commented, questioned, encouraged, and challenged my students. My heart swelled in the process.
My students, who I hope to see again before the school year ends, shared what mattered most to them.
“How are you doing? I actually miss going to school.”
“I'm thinking about doing a poem. Although I don't know what my poem is going to be about.”
“I've been writing and reading these days, and also math and science.”
“I'm kind of worried about what is happening now, but I know I'm safe.”
They’ve been working on some authentic writing. I’m not so sure they completely understand that yet.
Many of them are writing. They are also practicing many things as digital writers. They are much more independent than I’m sure they expected, much more independent than I expected. They have dipped their toes into peer conferencing, using quotes to launch their writing, and tagging their writing under specific genres. They have even learned to upload photographs! I didn’t teach them that one. It is nothing short of beautiful. Sometimes I wonder, as their teacher, if I’m supposed to see their work as precious as I do. Am I looking through rose colored lenses? It’s like magic to me. When I catch a glimpse of that moment when their heart, mind, and spirit come together in a piece of writing, it’s just like magic.
Today was a very good day for student writing in a writing community.