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.
The doors slide open and I walked in. I walked in like I've walked into that building countless times before. This time was different.
Two nurses, fully covered in scrubs that covering every possible body part stood before me. One on my right and another on my left. I was stopped at the door with one long question.
“Have you traveled outside the country, had a cough, been sneezing, had a fever, or have been exposed to anyone with the coronavirus in the past few days?” The nurse on my left asked, behind her plastic shield face mask. It was the new greeting.
Today, I participated in a live webinar lead by Lucy Calkins and it was incredible. The information shared was so overflowing with love and support for students, all I could do to keep up was dive into taking notes as fast as I could. Hearing from such powerful voices think through some of the same difficult conversations many of us teachers have struggled through was moving. There were so many creative and thoughtful ideas shared, it left my heart and mind filled.
The most beautiful thing happened today. One of my students drafted a poem.
We are at a distance. Separated, in the middle of our stay at home period, our indefinite time away from school period, our required time of social distance. Through all of that mess, one sweet student began the work of writing a poem… and it was beautiful
Do you notice when you've reach your breaking point?
I think for most humans, we discover this when it is much too late. Some of us wait to get to a breaking point and by then we can't turn back. Some of us can feel it coming from miles away.
"During this time, it is important that we continue to encourage children to read books (offline) as much as possible and write daily (in a notebook or on loose paper)."
“Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” - Fred Rogers
Earlier tonight, my son shared that his friend and her family returned safely from Germany today. They are in town now, just a couple miles away. They are self-quarantined for the next two weeks. Somewhere in the conversation, he mentioned that his friend’s mother had a fever at some point, but is now feeling better. He finished off the conversation with, “It’s not a matter of if we get it, it’s a matter of when we get it.”
Today, I steered clear of the grocery store and made my way to a home improvement store. It’s so nice to walk among the green leaves and flowers. I must have walked up and down each aisle a few times before I came across some tiny pink flowers. They seemed to be hidden under a platform, like tiny hidden treasures. I bought a few and brought them home.
The parking lot was full, but nothing out of the ordinary. I’m lucky when I find a parking spot up front on any day. After pulling into a space, I headed into the grocery store.
Dear Ms. Edinger,
I took your class in high school. You probably don’t remember me, but I remember you. Your social studies class, I’ll be honest, I don’t remember much. I sat inside your class, hoping never to be noticed. You didn’t yell and never scolded. I remember that so well. You were the kind of teacher who seemed to focus on what mattered.