Category Archives: #OneLittleWord

#SOLSC21: What is a Saturday Reunion?


This set of pictures popped up as a six year memory today and is quite worthy of attention.

The year 2015.

The location: Broadway and Millbank Chapel

A day of learning at the Saturday Reunion at #TCRWP.

My first post about the day is here.

What is a Saturday Reunion?

Approximately 4,000 educators from around the world

Descending on TCRWP

For hundreds of free sessions

From some of the smartest educators in the world!

Friends traveling miles.

The picture above includes

Friends from New Jersey, California and me, Iowa.

Friends learning together.

Checking the schedule and attending sessions together.

Friends chatting,

Meeting each other in real life.

Friends exchanging ideas,

And double checking our notes

As well as the ubiquitous “turn and talks.”

Friends meeting for dinner after,

Lingering for another word

Another minute of like-minded company!

What is a Saturday Reunion?

  • Challenging
  • Collaborative
  • Future-focused
  • Goal-oriented
  • Grounded in practice
  • Relevant
  • Sustained

And above all . . . A “choose your own pathway for learning and fun for the day.”

Saturdays . . .

Not just a day off

Not just a day to reflect

Because Saturday Reunions are endless days of possibilities!

When have you chosen to spend Saturdays learning with friends? What were the convincing arguments? What were the benefits?

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Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this daily forum during the month of March. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#SOL21: Numbers


It’s winter and numbers rule my life.

Below 0 … the daily highs

-20s and -30s … the daily lows

Snow on the ground in increments of feet – not inches

Numbers rule my life.

Tire pressure light remains on

As each tire varies in the cold

Lower than usual

Not so low to be concerned

And yet numbers rule my life.

What can I focus on?

What am I willing to do?

Read?

Write?

Sew?

Not safe to go out?

Numbers rule my life.

I begin with one idea.

One row at a time it builds.

One.

Then three.

A panel.

Numbers rule my life.

One elephant

One plus one plus one . . .

Row by row . . .

Numbers rule my life.

And the process continues . . .

What numbers are currently “controlling” your life? How are you rising to the challenge?

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Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#SOL21: #OLW


This year’s pace seemed lethargic. Too many words. Too much time. Too many choices. Inability to make a decision created angst. Worrying. Fretting. Reviewing previous words to ensure duplications did not occur by chance. Acceptable on purpose but not by chance!

A Review of Previous Words:

  • 2014    Transfer
  • 2015    Focus
  • 2016    Joyful
  • 2017    Brave
  • 2018    Curious
  • 2019 Celebrate
  • 2020 Envision

Not sure about the goal or purpose of #OLW? Here’s a video to check out more information about #OneLittleWord. If you know/understand the basic premise, keep reading or you can enter #OLW in the search box to see other blog posts I have written about #OLW since 2014.

This in my Twitter feed meant a lot this week as I was narrowing down my words.

My sister already tweeted out her #OLW for this year. And I love that she said it’s “part compass, part motivator, and part mirror.”

Nouns. Verbs. Adjectives. Words that can be more than one part of speech. Does it matter? Trying out the word. Does it fit? How well does it fit?

A final check of quotes and this one sealed my word.

“When you are willing, you don’t need to confront anything. It’s you that puts the resistance and unwillingness there. Put willingness there and resistance melts away.”

― Meir Ezra

So for this year . . .

I anticipate this will be a phrase that will include many actions . . .

Willing to . . .

Willing to listen

Willing to think

Willing to learn

Willing to take time

Willing to make time

Willing to take action

Willing!

What is your #OLW?

What are you willing to set as your 2021 goal(s}?

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Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#SOL20: Harvest Celebrations


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Harvest:  what do you celebrate?

  • Is it the season?
  • The produce?
  • The process?
  • The product?

What does harvest mean to you?

Sit with your definition for a minute.  Pause.  Reflect.

Harvest: (n.)

the process or period of gathering in crops.
“helping with the harvest”   (Oxford Dictionary)
My summer sewing harvest the last four months has been bountiful:
A dinosaur glow in the dark quilt
6 “Bunny” wall hangings
6 soup bowl cozies
4 Fourth of July table runners
An assist with a quilt for a graduate
2 sets of pajamas
20 different items.
2 for me.
Is it the envisioning?
Is it the design?
Is it the construction?
Is it the gift giving?
Today’s harvest
A BLT,
corn on the cob,
pickled beets,
bread and butter pickles.
No waiting.
Ready to eat
Fresh from the garden
And from the Farmer’s Market!
Not a “FALL” harvest;
A JULY harvest! 
A concrete harvest.
A purposeful harvest.

But is there more?

Also today . .  .
I noticed . . .
The lowering of the TBR stack
The conversations about blog posts
The list of books read
The list of blogs written
My reading notebook
My writing notebook
   . . . And the ideas swirling in my head!
A plethora of reading and writing accomplished . . .
As well as a list yet to come.

What does your harvest look like? 

What will you celebrate? 

How and when will you celebrate?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#TCRWP Reading Institute 2020


I miss:

  • the participants
  • the staff developers
  • Riverside Church
  • Horace Mann
  • the up close and personal feel of the FRONT row of the auditorium
  • the subway
  • being asked for directions on the subway
  • living out of “carry on”
  • coffee meet ups
  • packing my lunch
  • dining out on the NYC cuisine
  • the bookstores
  • the impossible and usually untimely return trip home (AKA stranded in NYC on the 4th of July)
  • the conversations as we walk past our location, to the wrong Starbucks, or just wandering
  • meeting up with #TWT friends
  • meeting up with #Voxer cousins
  • squeezing in a #G2Great chat (and what time zone am I really in?)
  • meeting up with #CuriosityCrew
  • and leaving the world behind for that short interlude . . . no TV, few phone calls, few emails.

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Thanks to the pandemic, it’s truly a Brave, New World.

Conversation and chatter seems non-stop . . . even if it is typed into a box! Or in a break out room!

It’s Wednesday night. Past the mid-point. My brain is full.  It’s leaking. Time to let something out!

My choice session today was all that I envisioned. (Envision- my #OLW)

And then some.

Grand slam?

Winning game of the World Series?

Kentucky Derby winner?

Gold Medal at the Olympics?

30 minutes of pure bliss.

Head nodding,

Amen-shouting,

Fist-pumping,

Zoom waving,

YES!  YES!  YES!  YES!  YES!  YES!

Title:  The Six Most Important  Things You Can Do with Your Students Who are Reading Below Grade Level Benchmarks

Find some paper or point to your fingers.

What are your 6 Most Important Things?

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

6

You don’t have to fuss over the order.  Look at them.  Are those the six most important things you believe in?

Are you sure? 

Are you really sure?

I had a difficult time choosing this session. There were three choice sessions that I needed to attend according to the titles.  This session was not #1. However, I made a guesstimate on the “Six Most Important Things” and I wanted to know if I was right. So I chose this session.

Here were my six:

Know your students / Relationship

Feedback, Self-assessment & Goal-setting

Talk about reading / Rehearse

Stuff to read

Reading, Reading, Reading every day

Was I close?

No bets.

No money.

30 minutes invested in checking my understanding.

Thoughts?




Here were Hannah’s Six Most Important Things.

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One small corner of my brain organized and ready for tomorrow’s learning.

So by tomorrow night I can be back at one of these stages . . .

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Summertime,

Summertime,

Sum, sum, sum, summertime Learning . . .

It’s the best!

 

 

 

 

 

#SOL20: Farewell, Celebrate!


New decade, new year, new days, new words!

One Little Word has a rich heritage and you can see my process in my 2019 choice here as well as my previous words.

  • 2014    Transfer
  • 2015     Focus
  • 2016    Joyful
  • 2017    Brave
  • 2018    Curious
  • 2019    Celebrate

My path to my 2020 word was lengthier than usual. Holidays. Celebrations. Family Events. Holiday Bowl. Travel. Celebrations. Joy. Travel Delays.

These words and this process were a part of my final review as I continued to search for graphics that would help depict my #OLW for 2020.

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I tested out graphics on google docs.  Which would make the best blog wallpaper?

I continually returned to . . .

Screenshot 2020-01-07 at 4.16.18 AM

The continuous cycle.

The “compactness” of the process.

Envision,

Execute,

Empower . . .

Yes, interrelated!

But, it all begins with Envision!

Without Envision, there is no goal, no target, no objective!

From Vocabulary.com, here’s the definition:

Screenshot 2020-01-14 at 6.56.13 AM

“Imagine a cause to be seen”

Envision!

What’s your #OLW?

How will it guide you in 2020?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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Envisioning a “Happy Birthday” for my brother today!

#SOL19: Fueling the Soul


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I returned to #NCTE19 in the same site as #NCTE14 to present as part of a different panel group.  Excited to rejoin face-to-face friends and colleagues. Exhilarated to learn with new friends and colleagues and just a bit exhausted from the prep and planning to take advantage of every single moment.  Celebrating friends. Celebrating peers. Celebrating communities. Celebrating learning. So ready to lean into my #OLW: Celebrate!

NCTE:  National Council of Teachers of English. So many folks from so many places. One night around the table, we represented Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Virginia, Virginia, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, California, Connecticut, and Michigan.  That was the night of the Slicer dinner.  Two new friends. Many face to face friends. Slicers all who intersect with #G2Great, #TCRWP, #CCIRA and our #NCTE presentation – the four of us together for the first time! Talking. Sharing. A laughing video of a grandson. Sharing of children’s artwork. Shared quotes. Food, drink, conversation, and fun. With just a touch of rain that did not dampen our spirits!

There is nothing like scintillating conversation, learning with peers, celebrating with authors, and after hours gatherings to fuel the soul . . . sparking a joyous celebration of friends, families, and ever increasing meet ups of social media friends.  As the world shrinks when we write and speak collaboratively on social platforms, our knowledge base grows exponentially.

As I continue to reflect on my travel and learning while I sift through my notes, I will add three outside sources here.

One of my favorites from NCTE is Kelly Gallagher’s Top Ten Things he heard at NCTE:

Melanie Meehan, co-author of Two Writing Teachers wrote about three sessions here.

Stop and Think Reading List and Resources here.

How do you collect and organize your learning? 

How are you refueling your professional soul?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#SOL19: Celebrate!


1. Celebrate?

Wet!

Heavy!

White!

The dreaded first s#$%fall of the year.  Will it accumulate?  Will it last? What will the impact be?

2. Celebrate?

This notice from WordPress awaited me . . .

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3. Celebrate?

Last week was a 2.25 hour (10 module training) for all the new processes . . .

in 98 days . . .

in our first in the nation process . . .

Iowa Caucus night . . .

2.25 hours of training

Training complete

4. Celebrate?

Notification . . .

Verified

Passed

100%

Quizes on each of the 10 modules in # 3 above.

5. Celebrate?

My reading goal for the year was 52 books . . . a book a week. I met that a while back. Still working on recording titles and updating the format of my “handwritten system” because I really wanted to emphasize broader categories of texts this year. Pushing on beyond:  professional, YA/children’s lit, mystery/suspense, nonfiction.  But that’s another post.

Celebrating a new source of data from Goodreads . . .

My Review Stats

Screenshot 2019-10-28 at 10.15.38 PM

Goodreads collects the year of publication so I can view the “age” of the books that I’ve reported on that site as read. 

What else is on my list/mind? 

  • My part in our NCTE presentation.
  • Choosing sessions to attend at NCTE.
  • Wrapping Christmas gifts.   

What’s on your list?  What will you be celebrating?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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Random celebratory events that were all possibilities for a blog post.

Process: Beginning with one word (#OLW). Brainstorming. Collecting ideas. Sifting through thoughts. Vignettes of celebrations curated in one post. Reflecting on my #OLW:  Celebrate! (How do we demonstrate this for students?)  Opposite process of beginning with many words in this post.

Celebrate – published post!

 

 

#SOL19: Empowering Teachers


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I ripped open the envelope. So much hinged on the contents.  Where I would live.  Where I would work. My life.

Two pages: one page for my elementary ed placement and a second page for my special ed placement.

YES!

Both placements were in the location requested. Fourth grade in one building and then half day in the same building and half day in a second building for special ed.

16 weeks of student teaching would fill the spring semester of my senior year in college.  16 weeks around holidays and weekends would run from January through May.  16 weeks out of the dorm and in my own apartment. Apprehensive . . . perhaps a bit.  Excited . . . YES! Returning to my junior college town in a different role.  Trying on the role of a teacher.  YIKES!  Student Teaching!

Fast forward to my current work with teachers and graduate students . . . most but not all are teaching. And thinking about teacher growth, district professional development, and the opportunity to take courses, participate in webinars, and attend conferences. So many sources of learning!

I’m fascinated by this sketch noting by Joy Vega and thankful that she gave me permission to use it in my blog post. This is just the top third of the page from one of the #ILA19 sessions.

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IDENTIFIERS:

Date

Location

Title of Session

Participants

The BASICS!

It’s eye catching!  Innovative color choices . . . and the use of the dots!

Within five minutes of the opening, the audience was generating and discussing their own possible “Problems of Practice.”

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The first step in Action Research.  And then the actual research questions. The refinement. The revision. The data. The student responses. The curiosity. The quest for learning.

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And the reflections from the teachers – scattered across the US – were amazing.  These were the Heinemann Fellows presenting at #ILA19 who should be writing a book about their work! So easy to celebrate this group and their work! Empowering Teachers through Action Research:  Dr. Kimberly Parker, Aeriale N. Johnson, Tricia Ebarvia, Anna Gotangco Osborn, and Tiana Silvas.

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(If you are on Facebook, you can read Dr. Mary Howard’s notes about this session here.)

ACTION RESEARCH:  Validating Instruction, Pursuing Improved Instructional Practices, and Reflecting on Professional Growth

What if Action Research were a part of continuing education, continuing endorsements, and recertification processes for teachers? 

What if Action Research were a part of a “paid, 5th year experience” for novice teachers who had support for setting up a classroom at the beginning of the year and quality coaching ALL year long? 

What if we “re-envisioned teacher prep” programs to include first draft Action Research so data collection was placed back in the hands of teachers with curiosity and questions of their own?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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#SOL19: Celebrate Life


Live, Laugh, Love, Linger . . . and Learn

Celebrate . . .

Between conferences, sessions at ILA, NCTE, CCIRA, and . . . family, it seems like I have many days and nights on the road.

Hotels

Amenities

What comes with the room?

What did I forget?

What does that schedule really look like?

Life is often complicated.

There’s the community from #G2Great.

Voxer Cousins

The Slicers

TWT Educators as Writers

#TeachWrite

#TCRWP

and last week #HUSLI19.

Social media groups  . . . (another post here “Social Media as a Purposeful Professional Learning Tool”)

Rockstars:  Colby Sharp, Cornelius Minor, Jennifer Serravallo and Lester Laminack. Hours of Life. Laughter. Book Loving and Lingering over stories shared and learning, learning, learning!

A bit of rain. Yes a business center. Not a restaurant. Some minor inconveniences.

While in a neighboring state, my mind is with Mia, her family, and her “communities” at the Calivista Motel.  I didn’t stay long enough to be a “weekly” but how do I move adeptly in and out of groupsWhat can I learn from Mia?

When I sketch it out, how does it look in Front Desk?  

In one view I have the Calivista Motel, the “front desk”, the school Mia attends, and then China.  The second page has Mia and her parents, including their hopes and fears.

Is Mia really on a “point of a triangle” or is she in the middle of every community? And how many individuals does it take to “form” a community?


I was wishing for a 3-D representation (or at least a page of chart paper as 8.5 x 11 was severely limiting. Barely drafted and I am looking to revise. I am not a fan of covering every inch of the page YET. Still admiring white space.  Perhaps that will continue to evolve.

And how am I doing with my goals for #BookLove in its last week? 

Where is my Writing About Reading headed? 

Is it improving?

Slowly moving forward is today’s celebration of life and learning! 

What is yours?




Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.

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