Slice of Life: TCRWP Bound

ImageTuesday is the day to share a “Slice of Life” with Two Writing Teachers. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here. 

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The last three months have seemed like a year.  Why?  I was waiting to hear about the status of my application for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project’s June Writing Institute and July Reading Institute.

It seemed like “forever” since I saw the first tweet that said “…accepted!”  Multiple friends received news of their status.  My reading application status was “wait list” so I tried to be patient and believe that “no news is good news!”  Finally I received notice that I was accepted for the Writing Institute. And last week my reading application was accepted!  Two weeks at Teachers College Reading and Writing Project!  Woohoo!



After my application was accepted I realized the truth of this statement.  Institute paid.  Housing paid.  Flight booked.  Checking time frames. . . Planning to maximize time and learning opportunities.


Why is this blog worthy?



My two weeks at Teachers College last summer for the Reading and Writing Institutes was one of the most fabulous learning experiences of my life!  With the new writing Units of Study, my large group sessions every day were led by Lucy Calkins.  She can build confidence and inspire all teachers to “do more” to increase the reading and writing of students.  Anything and everything is possible with Lucy’s guidance!


And the many rock stars at #TCRWP. .  .  My daily choices included Mary Ehrenworth, Chris Lehman and Kate Roberts.  It was so fun to “know” many of the staff and presenters because of their “Twitter presence” and so easy to thank them for their accessibility!  Unbelievable learning.  And yet, I have to confess, I was ready to go home last year when the first night’s assignment was to write a narrative. I spent hours (some whining and complaining) writing, drafting, rewriting, drafting.  It was not pretty and basically fit the third grade rubric according to the #UoS rubric.  Frustrating, yes; empathy for students, YES!

I am so ready to learn more. Do more.  And I have been working on developing my own writing muscles this year – blogging, tweeting, and developing models.  June Writing Institute!  July Reading Institute!  Love Learning!

My NYC agenda contains:

June Writing

Advanced AM Section:  Reports, Nonfiction Books, Journals, Feature Articles: Information Writing and ELA Across the Day (3-8) Mary Ehrenworth

Advanced PM Section:  Seeing Patterns in Student Work, Then Teaching Small Groups (and More) to Build New Habits and Skills (3-8) Emily Smith


July Reading

Advanced AM Section:  Accelerating Students’ Progress Along Levels of Text Difficulty: Guided Reading, Assessment Based Teaching, and Scaffolds for Complex Texts (3-8) Brooke Geller

Advanced PM Section:  Social Studies Centers Can Lift the Level of Content Knowledge and Reading Instruction (3-8) Kathleen Tolan


 How will you continue to learn about reading and writing this summer?

Here are two writing opportunities for you to consider:

 Summer Writing for You, The Teacher (Two Writing Teachers blog post by Betsy Hubbard)

#TeachersWrite (Kate Messner)


21 responses

  1. I loved reading your slice this morning! Fun to “hear” how excited you are. And great to get a preview of the first year experience. I cannot wait for the June Writing Institute! My morning large group session is with Lucy Calkins, just like you last year. Between books I plan to read, joining a critique group and attending TCRWP, summer PD is looking really rich for me this summer.

    1. Lisa,
      I had to reread my post because I knew that I had overused the “!” but the excitement is contagious. Lucy is so inspirational. You will love it!

      Are you joining the #TWT Critique group? I signed up yesterday! Love, love, love summer learning!

      1. Yes I am joining TWT critique group. And I agree- summer learning is so great- energizing!

      2. PS- Kate Messner’s Teachers Write is terrific. I’ve participated for the last two summers. Amazing resource.

  2. What a great lineup, Fran! It really is wonderful getting to know each other via twitter. Hope to see you in person this summer.

    1. Twitter is so wonderful – but blogging has also helped increase my circle of friends and colleagues. Will you be at #tcrwp? If not, NCTE in November?

      1. I’ll be at August Writing to teach, but I hope to be around in June and July to learn (and socialize!) and yes – NCTE.

  3. Linda Hicks-Green | Reply

    Dear Fran
    I am so excited for you. I am looking forward to hearing about your adventures.

    1. Linda,
      I will share my journey in Tweets and my blog! You know me – I love to share!

  4. So happy for you, Fran! Sounds like a gem of an opportunity – wish I was going! Can’t wait to hear about all your learning!

    Thanks for sharing your experience last year writing the narrative. I appreciate your honesty – I wish more teachers would put themselves out there and make themselves vulnerable like that!

    1. Dana,
      Honesty is truly the best learning! I was so disappointed in my own work that I set goals and WORKED towards my goals!

  5. That is awesome – you will learn so much and I know you will share 🙂 – plus, I will get to meet you at last!!

    1. Can’t wait to meet you, Tara!

  6. Yeah! I’m in your PM group with Kathleen Tolan. Wow both you and Kathleen Tolan in the same room. So excited. Going to do the critique group too. A little nervous about what to write, but that is always the case. I Love Lucy and I love your joy in PD adventures!

    1. Julieanne,
      After all our tweeting and blogging, I can’t wait to meet you!

      The bonus is getting to learn side by side with you!

  7. I am going as well and so VERY excited. I have not been before, so will be in different sessions, but I know that Lucy Calkins does the large group presentation and you have reassured me that she is everything I sense she is! I feel so lucky. Have a wonderful time.

    1. It is so amazing and you will feel so empowered! And fun as well!

  8. What a great summer you will have! Learning and meeting up with fellow blog and Twitter voices, can it get any better?

    1. Elsie,
      It is so exciting to meet up with fellow “slicers” and “Twitterers” to learn together! We’ll have to figure out how to meet as well!

      Thanks for commenting!

  9. I’m sorry we won’t be in the same sections since it would’ve been great to collaborate with you in person. However, I’ll look forward to reading more about what you learn AND to meeting you in person for lunch!

    1. Stacey,
      It would have been fun to meet and learn with you; lunch will be a second best with also looking to see what else you are learning! Love summer LEARNING!

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