Saturday, September 26, 2015

Celebrating Connection and Beginnings!

Thank you to Ruth Ayres for the opportunity to focus on celebrations every week! Please join us!

I struggled to celebrate today and I almost skipped it, but the commitment to celebrate is important and as I continue to struggle through this terribly inconvenient cough and scratchy voice I decided I MUST celebrate. 

Today I celebrate the connection I've made with my students. This year, each block is so different and it's taken me awhile to figure out what everyone needs. The "figuring out" takes time and some failed attempts on my part. I get frustrated with that process, but this week I noticed amazing progress for my students AND for me! 

This week I discovered that my first block is kind and thoughtful. I discovered that when I returned from morning duty to the whole class sitting quietly outside the room waiting for me.

I observed that my second block is curious and problem solvers. They always want to help and find the best way to get something done. 

 I noticed that my third block has lots of energy and creativity and wants to share those gifts with each other. I noticed that when they begged for more time to share their writing!

Each group is unique and filled with such energy! I am so blessed to get to spend my days with them. 

We have spent lots of time this week in our notebooks and we are having so much fun!! Yesterday, we created our margin mascots. The original idea came from Writing Fix. I tweaked it a bit to fit my students. I want the mascot to help them think about themselves as writers. We had lots of fun creating our mascots. They needed a name and a stick figure and they needed to give the mascot a voice. You can imagine some of the mascots that emerged. Some surprised me and others made me laugh! I continue to be inspired by the creativity and willingness to take risks by my students! I can't wait to get our mascots commenting on our writing. Here are a few... 

Finally, I celebrate beginning a new notebook. Number sixty-four. Here's a picture of the cover and of my title page.

This title page will be my mantra. It brings me peace. I'm glad I stopped to celebrate today! 


  1. Margin Mascots/Mr. Stick Sometimes when I read what you teachers are doing I want to go back in time and be a student!

  2. Notebook number sixty-four -wow! I can see how it waits for your words. May you have an abundance of ideas and words! May writing keep briniging you joy!

  3. I love your notebook cover & title page. It reminds me to start writing again. I've left off after a busy summer and can't seem to start again. Thank you. I love the pictures that you posted and that whatever you are using keeps students anonymous. Would you mind sharing what app/filter etc. you are using?

    1. Thank you, Crystal! I use Waterlogue for the pictures!! Happy writing!

  4. I need to check out the margin mascot idea. I am taking small steps back to writing and as I told Jennifer, I hope to be back with you two soon. I miss our Saturday laughter!

  5. I celebrate with you today the connections you are making with kids. Did you paint the watercolors in your post? If so, I celebrate your artistic skills, too.
    My Celebrate the Week

  6. I love the margin mascot! I have used Mr. Stick before, but I'd love to hear how you tweaked it to Margin Mascot!

  7. I hope you're better, Michelle-thinking of you, & am glad to read your celebrations. Love that margin mascot. One of my colleagues did that a few years ago, & required stick figures which were hilarious, & I love the creativity of your students, too. I hope they'll be tough!

  8. So glad you came to celebrate. You inspire me every week. Your 64th notebook! And that title page! And celebrating the individuality of each group of students! Hope you're on the mend. In the meantime, take time to be kind and coddle yourself! Margin mascots - what an idea!

  9. Your notebook count is very inspiring!! I shared my notebook with my class during morning meeting and was asked how many I have filled . It is many but not even close to 64!!! Wow - impressive! I'm glad you celebrated and shared. Feel better.

  10. So glad you celebrated Michelle. I love the margin mascot. I'm wondering if how my kiddos could use this to comment on their own writing. Thanks for the window into your classes. Love how they are all unique and energized. Feel better my friend!

  11. Michelle, I am so delighted that you celebrated your classes because it gives me insight into 6th grade students' lives. I also love your writing mascots and your new notebook. #64 a great achievement that I would like to show during my PD sessions this year. I hope you are starting to feel better.


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