Wednesday, March 21, 2018

In the Presence of Writers

Yesterday the weather predicted a snow day. It didn't happen. If you are a teacher and this has happened to you, you can imagine what the day was like. Disappointed students and teachers filled the halls and to make matters worse, we had a hard day of work ahead of us in English class...drafting literary analysis essays. 

This is not easy work. We've been working hard on preparing to draft and I know they were ready, but I also know, as a writer, days like this can be challenging. Once again my students surpassed my expectations. They slogged through the unknown. They listened to me when I gave them permission to write crummy first drafts. "Just get it down on the page! We will make is shiny in revision." They finally believe me.

I was running from desk to desk giving encouragement and nudges until I wasn't...until they didn't need me. Until they realized...I really do know what to do. Yesterday, once again, I had the privilege of sitting in a room of writers as they pushed themselves to become more to grow to learn.

What a job I get to do! (I have no pictures of these moments. I wish I did, but so much learning was happening I was totally engaged in that.)

And today...we've been rewarded with our first real snow of the season. I's late, but it's beautiful and I am enjoying every single flake. 

March is the Slice of Life Challenge.
I'll be sharing a post each day in the month of March.
Please join me at Two Writing Teachers to read more slices!


  1. I was talking with my husband yesterday about how different projected "snow days" are when a teacher is retired as I am now. I used to love the anticipation of a break in routine, even if the snow didn't show. You're right though; it certainly changes the way students enter the classroom. They are amazingly resilient as you show here. Enjoy your gift of snow. You all deserve it!

  2. I love the energy in this piece. I can feel the energy in your classroom the sluggish energy turned motivated, determined. I always enjoy your slices - they all have an joyful approach to teaching and learning. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Michelle I love how you describe to your students how to get started with their writing process, slogging through the unknown, giving them permission to write crummy first drafts and most of all making it shiny in revision! It made me think about the post I created for SOL today and the process i went through. I am sure it is very apparent to your students that you do know what your doing! : )

  4. Sometime writing that crummy draft is the hardest! I have been known to spend 3 full days on ONE paragraph. Despite my mentors pleas and advice I could NOT move from this challenging paragraph! Good for you for teaching these kids it really, really is ok to write crummy!

  5. "I was running from desk to desk giving encouragement and nudges until I wasn't..." I was afraid this was where the story went downhill. You can imagine my most pleasant surprise when you revealed it was because they were soaring, independently!


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