#SOL15: One Little Word

Tuesday is the day to share a “Slice of Life” with Two Writing Teachers. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here. Thanks to Stacey, Anna, Beth, Tara, Dana and Betsy for creating a place for us to work collaboratively.

Words are so important; how do I choose just one for 2015?  I have lists of words with many scratched out and some circled. The next list has similar words including some very specific synonyms. Words scribbled in random order on post its abound!  A great deal of perseverance as well as drafting, reading, drafting, and looking up even more definitions led me to my word for 2015.










Focus:  (yourdictionary.com)


Focus is defined as to concentrate on something in particular. Focus is defined as to bring into view.

  1. An example of focus is to put all of one’s energy into a science project.
  2. An example of focus is to adjust a microscope to better see a specimen.



2015 is full of promise.  By choosing to “focus”, I will be prioritizing my time every day in order to be as efficient and effective as possible and yet have time to complete the tasks that are necessary as well as things that are on my “fun” list.  Focus will allow me to set goals and strive to meet them in both my personal (soon to be grandma) and my work roles. Every day is a treasure and concentrating or focussing will allow me to reflect at the end of the day on my goals and actions!



One little word to

Center my life,

Using words to

Sustain my actions!

focus three

What’s your “One Little Word” for 2015?

36 responses

  1. YAY!!! Focus! I love your plan for your word! Congrats on your impending grandma status!! So exciting!

    1. Thanks, Michelle! I believe focus represents many, many, many aspects of my life! I have loved being “aunt” and even “great aunt” but am eagerly anticipating that “grandma” is going to be fantabulous!

  2. Focus is something we could all use more of. Love your little Focus acrostic. I wrote an acrostic with my OLW today and will be sharing some of my students acrostics later this week. Great form for the OLW.

    1. Margaret,
      I was just reading your slice at http://reflectionsontheteche.wordpress.com/2015/01/06/reaching-for-creativity/ Terrific resources for teachers and many thanks for sharing your process!

      Acrostics are a lifetime favorite of mine! (Keeps the focus on the content!) 🙂

      I’m looking forward to seeing more of your OLW work. Hope you don’t get this cruddy weather in LA!

  3. We used similar strategies to find our OLWs. I also had lists and spent a lot of time looking up definitions. I finally chose “shift”. What I notice from everyone’s post is that, while our ultimate goals are similar, we are each taking our own route to get there.

    1. Adrienne,
      OHHH! I like “shift” too! It’s such a fun journey for us all! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Love the poem–it fits perfectly! Good luck on your focus this year!!

    1. Thanks, Jennifer!
      I like your “intentional” as well. It amazes me how each word fits so many situations in our lives – – – not just one way!

  5. I am with you about your experience with online dictionaries and the definition being as important as the word!

    1. Amelia,

      “Mindful” was on my list and was one where I had even mapped out some synonyms as well. Thanks for sharing!

  6. So glad to see your OLW includes yet and fun! Focus will bring that efficiency element you need for the new adventures (aka grandparenting) in your life.

    I love my online dictionaries. I look up at least one word a post!

    1. Thanks, Julieanne!

      I’m often amazed that a word looks right but just doesn’t sound quite right when I read it out loud. That always sends me to the dictionary to double check my thinking!

  7. Love your OLW. It is so easy to get distracted, at least for me. How much more we would get done if we just focused on what we are doing and how much more we would enjoy life if we focus on the moment and not what will happen next. Enjoy being focused.

    1. Amen to distractions! I’m trying to figure out how to channel those. When in the day is it OK to be distracted/off task? When do I need to be more purposeful?

      A cookie cutter schedule will not work! That much I know!

  8. Great OWL. I’m having a tough time deciding mine. Maybe I should have a little more focus. 😉

    1. Borrow Beth’s “patience” . . . The more I worried that I wasn’t going to get it “right”, the harder it was to focus on the purpose! After I said “focus” out loud to myself, I knew it really was my word!!!

  9. A great word, Fran! I can’t wait to hear what it teaches you. My friend and colleague also chose ‘focus’ as her OLW. Great choice!

    1. Thanks, Dana!
      I just looked over at my shelf and saw that it was a Mike Schmoker book title. Somehow, I had forgotten that while out of the office or I might have continued looking. I do believe that “less is more” many times and we have to quit trying to do “everything” – or maybe that’s the goal of focus – to convince me that with focus – I really don’t have to DO EVERYTHING!

  10. Your acrostic is so perfect! I hope focus will be just what you need. BTW, being a grandma is pretty awesome! 🙂

    1. Thanks so much, Elsie! Right now I think it would be fun to see what a “monthly acrostic” looks like (if I stay focused!). I think I am in luck – focus begins with an “f” and grandma with a “g” and those would be my first two initials! They should both be easy to remember and keep prioritized! LOL!

  11. Fran I love this! It is such a great reminder that this is an important word in our teacher lives as well as in our everyday lives. I know that we will learn from you as you reflect and share your journey – thank you for being so generous with us!

    1. Taylor, You are welcome!
      Sharing is just a way of life! (and fulfills the purpose of my blog!) Hope the weather is NOT YET causing you all too many problems! Unbearable cold makes it so hard when students are cooped up inside all day long!

  12. I love that during this OLW sharing people remind each other about important ideas. When you will write about “focus” later in the year all your readers will think about it and turn their attention to what matters. I just read that Holly also chose “focus” as her word.

    1. Terje,
      I can’t wait to see what Holly said about focus. The beauty of “strong” OLWs is that we can really name and notice many, many, many important ideas!

      Thanks for commenting! ❤

  13. Love focus — great word. Choosing to turn our attention in the direction that matters and to prioritize. Love the image – can’t wait to hear your journey.

    1. Thanks, Clare!
      I, too, love the deliberate choices that focus can allow! It’s going to be a great journey!

  14. Well, hey…that was going to be “my” word when I posted on Thursday! 🙂 Love the way you shared your journey to your OLW, Fran. There can never be too much focus in the OLW world, right?!

    1. Tara,
      I would consider it an honor to “share” the OLW “focus” with you! I know that you will add more depth to it!!!

  15. Oh boy, it’s hard to imagine what you and Tara will accomplish with focus driving your work in 2015. Love your poem, love the ideas behind your choice. I’m working with acknowledge for 2015. Looking forward to it!

    1. I think we will have to focus on being super duper great for 2015! We need to have a Google Hang Out or something – in professional withdrawal! Love online but sometimes I need the focus of the spoken word!

      Thanks, Melanie!!!

  16. I thought about this word for this year, but ultimately it didn’t speak to me and what I wanted to accomplish. (I’ll be sharing my OLW on TWT tomorrow.)

    Looking forward to reading more about your journey with this word in the year to come. Happy 2015, Fran!

    1. Stacey,
      Can’t wait for the unveiling of your OLW! “Focus” will keep me in process mode . . . the exact tasks to be accomplished are currently (day 6) not as critical as the journey!
      Happy 2015! Loved your slice today/yesterday ‘Where was I?’ (Can’t wait to capture those stories as a grandma!)

  17. […] I felt I had landed on my ONE WORD. Tuesday morning I opened my email to find a blog post (One Little Word) by a good friend, Fran McVeigh. Low and behold, we chose the SAME WORD for 2015! Now I have an […]

  18. Focus is a great word, Fran, and I love your acrostic. The last two lines, “using words to/sustain my actions” really get to the heart of what having OLW is all about. Thanks for sharing! I always look forward to reading your thoughtful posts.

  19. Love your OLW Fran. It’s a biggie, but one that will sustain you for sure! FYI I thought you might find this interesting… I am finally reading Georgia Heard’s Finding the Heart of Non Fiction. In part two where she begins to explain her seven craft tools, she lists Focus as her #1. She further adds that focus is the “Latin word for hearth – the place in the home where family and friends come together to warm and comfort themselves.” Coach, mom, grandmother – it all works!

  20. […] wrote about you here, here, and […]

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