Category Archives: Uncategorized

Say What?

A nnoyed B AWL – Ban Assault Weapon Legislation NOW C ross D etermined E xasperated F reaking Out G alled H issy fit I rritated

Do I really need to use the entire alphabet or do these 9 letters show the pattern?

I am ANGRY. I am tired. I am tired of crying. I am tired of crying and trying to think of solutions. I am tired of crying and trying to think of solutions when lives are at stake. I’m sure the “B” above was the biggest clue to my feelings about the massacre in Uvalde this week.
P. David Pearson FB 5.26.2022


Why haven’t all the school deaths been enough for change? It Y took 1 “shoe bomber” to change TSA screening. ONE! This list is eye opening. Check and see where your senator stands. How much money does it take to buy their vote? Which Senators Have Taken the Most Money? When protests formed outside justices’ homes, it took 1 day and 20 minutes to pass legislation. Are their lives worth more than the 19 students and 2 teachers? (Especially when neighbors “helped” protesters organize)


Now. Take action. Prayers are not saving our children. It hasn’t worked for over 20 years of school shootings. Just what do I want? need? demand? Here’s one idea. Let’s change the gun laws. Waiting periods. Two visits to purchase a gun with waiting periods in between. Only one purchasing place for an entire state. Require listening to multiple possibilities. Bounties for anyone who turns in folks who plan to harm others. This from Facebook. . . Sound familiar?


If police waited to respond because of the weapon the individual was using, even after he was shooting outside the school for 12 minutes, and police were pulling some students out classroom windows? link What happened during that hour the gunman was inside the building? How many lives could have been saved by earlier action? How many lives can be saved by action now? Ban assault weapons? Change the requirements for purchasing ammunition? Let’s go back to the 2nd Amendment. Stick your argument in your ear! or anywhere else the sun doesn’t shine!

Black powder guns for everyone. No interpretation required of the founding fathers’ words.

Don’t buy into the hype. Do the research. How many deaths? How many MORE deaths? How many school shootings? Which weapons? What was the effect of the previous ban on assault weapons in the US? How did New Zealand respond to their worst massacre? Why can’t we? Why can’t we have GUN SAFETY? And what about the calls to 911 from inside the classroom. @BeadingfanNancy Replying to @LeaderMcConnell @SenateGOP
Student calls to 911: 12:03—whispered she’s in room 112 12:10—said multiple dead 12:13—called again 12:16—says 8-9 students alive 12:19—student calls from room 111 12:21—3 shots heard on call 12:36—another call 12:43—asks for police 12:47—asks for police
Mike Baker’s Twitter thread link

#SOL22: Rehearsal

Decision freeze is a real thing.

Which red? Which white? Which blue? Print? Solid? Stars or not? Big print or little?he

It began with one pattern, then a panel, and then pictures to re-create and innovate.

The first was a pattern. Lovingly. Carefully. Thoughtfully. Each part chosen for the way they would fit together in the whole.

And here’s the draft.

New skills: applique stars and then two color flange binding (not seen in this iteration)

Quilt 1

And then because of a picture. . .

I had to determine the size of the squares, the dimensions of the stripes and the fabric for the squares. And then on to matching the picture in my head with the one on my table.

Quilt 2

The process is never complete until the edges are bound.

Binding (Measure, Cut, Sew, Press)

Ending with a mitered seam for the strength in seams sewn at angles.

Binding 2 (measure, mark, sew, trim, press, check)

And a star copied from another quilt top . . . still in progress.

Last week I put together three quilt tops as I get ready for our May Quilt Guild meeting. Do you see the theme that has emerged? In June, local veterans will receive “Quilts of Valor.” There are requirements. Size. Fabric Quality. Pre-washed. Labelled. . . My goal is to complete six. My uncle needs one so his may be included in that six. Six in a month.

One is done. One is ready for the binding to be hand sewn. Two more tops are constructed.

Two more weeks.

More rehearsal so that each quilt I construct improves and my skills sharpen.

Quilts of Valor

Quilts = Healing link

What are you doing in your community to help or heal others? Where might you begin?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOLSC22: 28

Day 28 of the Slice of Life Story Challenge 2022. The end is in sight!

Format: Right Now

I read Sally’s post yesterday with this format: link here

And I used this format way back in 2014 here.


Right now I am . . .

Thinking of ways to describe today’s educator

Counting the days left in March

Celebrating the 27 Previously written posts,

Trying to focus on my one little word, “being patient”.

Remembering we both began as special educators.

Feeling like we’ve been friends for decades.

Spending time attending and delivering PD.

Laughing at our silly, “graceful” antics.

Obsessing about tasks that need to be done.

Blogging in shared writing space

Finishing each other’s sentences.

Acting like sisters across the miles.

Thank you, Dr. Mary Howard for the positive influence, mentorship, and friendship in my personal and professional life. You are truly a gem in both #CuriosityCrew and #G2Great.

Photo by Alexas_Fotos on Unsplash

Have you found any NEW formats or revisited old formats when the stories are slowly being revealed?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this daily forum during the month of March.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOLSC22: 12

This is not the post that was planned for today.

This is not the post I ever wanted to write.

But life’s plans are not . . . always ours to choose.

This format is so appropriate.

Which story should I tell?

The polka cruise?

The trip to Rome?

How someone’s favorite dinner was at the Hard Rock in Rome?

A graduation road trip to Florida?

The promise to deliver Mom to a family event?

Or just the fun of the weekly card games?

Hand and foot (rules here)

Hand and foot with the elders

Hand and foot with the elders at Aunt Janie’s

Hand and foot with the elders at Aunt Janie’s with much laughter

Hand and foot with the elders at Aunt Janie’s with much laughter and many stories

Hand and foot with the elders at Aunt Janie’s with much laughter, many stories and scrumptious food

Winning at hand and foot with the elders at Aunt Janie’s with much laughter, many stories and scrumptious food

Winning at hand and foot when Aunt Shirley was one of my partners with the elders at Aunt Janie’s with much laughter, many stories and scrumptious food.

You lived , loved and fought valiantly, Aunt Shirley.

You were a blessed addition to our family, the treasure Uncle Leo found at a dance.

Thank you for all the time we had; we of course were greedy and wished for more.

Thank you, courageous Aunt Shirley Ruth.

Enjoy your new choices of card partners, raucous winning card games and polka dances ahead.

Photo by Alexas_Fotos on Unsplash

What memories are you making today? How will you remember the important people in your life?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this daily forum during the month of March.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOL22: Trouble

Do you remember a paper and pencil task? I first saw it in third grade. It was a sheet of approximately 20 numbered items. At the very top were the printed directions. The teacher read them to us as we followed along.

Read everything before doing anything.



To the point.

I read down through the page. The last item said something like:

20. Now that you have read all the items, put your name at the top of the page, then turn it over and wait quietly.

I don’t remember that anyone else followed directions. I remember that feeling of success, of smugness, that came from following the directions and being the first person done.

And winning!

School … easy peasey! I wasn’t always a “direction follower”, but in this instance it paid off. I was fortunate that most of the time, school was not too difficult. Learning may be a temporary challenge, but the short term payoff is high.

Over the weekend, I had a different experience. It was a steep learning curve and as mentioned in last week’s blog here, I had time on my side. But was it really?

It’s a tough pattern. I’ve never attempted anything this complicated. It’s not the number of pieces but the shear number of different patterns that combine to make up the whole!

Just this one star in the very center is a sum total of 48 pieces.

I was in over my head.

What if it really is TOO hard?

The star is comprised of diamonds. 72 of one size and 32 of a second larger size. The diamonds proved difficult. “Matching points” was critical. I’d heard it a dozen times. The whole focus on the pattern depends upon star points. “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend” is a phrase that doesn’t come from a quilting pattern!

It was evident that we were moving at different rates as we assembled the diamonds. Following different processes. Some sewed. Some pinned. Some marked and pinned. Some chain stitched.

And I struggled. Marking, pinning, sewing. Checking my accuracy. Ripping out. Resewing. One at a time, the stack grew higher. Seventy two were needed. Seventy two were slowly being constructed. And those around me moved on, attaching large and small triangles. And I was still sewing diamonds. The stack was growing very, very, very slowly.

I wondered about skipping ahead. I wondered about my level of competence. I wondered why I had tackled something so difficult. I wondered when something had ever seemed so unattainable. I wondered if I really wanted to finish this project.

It wasn’t because I didn’t know the goal. It wasn’t because I didn’t have small attainable steps. My frustration was that five of seven peers had moved beyond me and I was still plodding along. Visibly multiple steps behind.

It wasn’t just the struggle from trying something new.

It was the struggle from trying something new that was hard and complex.

I have new admiration and respect for folks who complete quilts with hundreds and millions of pieces. I have new admiration for anyone who struggles with a task when others in their group move on . . , without them.

How do you respond when you fall behind the group? What do you see in that mirror? How do you continue? Has your learning/ demonstration of learning ever seemed completely hopeless?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#CCIRA22: Day 1

The learning day begin with a keynote at 7:30 am and the closing keynote wrapped up at 5:50 pm. Approximately 750 educators attending. Approximately 750 educators learning. Approximately 750 educators going above and beyond in terms of interest, time and attention.

Themes for the day


Celebrate students, celebrate peers, celebrate our administration as they, too, have tough jobs. Celebrate the genius we see in our students. Celebrate everything that students can do. Celebrate everything that teachers and staff are doing.

Find the joy

Find the joy in each day. Look for it. Name it. Find the texts that bring you joy. Find the poetry that brings you joy. Find those small moments where you can anchor your joy. Notice. Name it.

Look for the new paths you can forge

What can you eliminate from your plate? Before anything is added, something must go. Make suggestions. Continue to ask. What do you need in order to meet the needs of the students in front of you?

Be responsive to students

Teach readers not reading. Teach writers not writing. There are no benchmarks for students who have had three years of school interrupted by a pandemic. There are no scientific studies that inform instruction, learning, or assessment during a pandemic. Business as usual is really not an option. Plan for learning that meets students’ needs but is also responsive!

More to come! So necessary to air out my brain for tomorrow’s 7:30 am to 6 pm day!

What will you be learning?

#SOL22: My home is a kolache

My home is a kolache.

The flavors will vary.

But the air filled with the

Sweet scent of kolaches

Brings back memories of home

And a day of baking!

Special event?


Sunday brunch?


Family gathering?



Chasing perfection . . . the sweetbread and the filling . . . never quite the same.

I grew up in a house in RR 3.

Seven miles from town.

We moved once

From an old story and a half house to a brand new house about a hundred yards away.

Moving in over Christmas

During high school.

Two distinctly different houses on the same farm

With many constants

Especially the kolaches.

One Christmas vacation we had baking lessons

“How to make kolaches”

What a treat!

Watching the kids measure and follow directions

The laughter

The waiting

And the fillings.

Oh, so persnickety.

Prune and poppyseed are the favorites

But only when prune has been diluted with applesauce

And when poppyseed has been diluted with graham crackers, milk and a bit of butter.

Fillings from a can are not appreciated; not authentic, too strong, just not right.

Home is a kolache

A pan full of choices

Prune, poppyseed, cherry, apricot.

The reminder of family

And baked with love.

(Original intent: To Write a Graphic Essay)

Example of a Graphic Essay – Home is a Cup of Tea

But after more than an hour in photo albums, I couldn’t find the pictures that I was looking for. So more words and less graphics was the result.

WordPress tells me that I’ve written about kolaches as a part of family and home here, here, here and here.

What might you write a graphic essay about? Would a graphic essay be easier or more challenging than a typical essay?

I now have a draft to return to. To revisit. To revise. To reflect. Home is a . . . Maybe I will try a different topic next time! (Process and Product)


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOL22: Snow Forecast

Again, really? How many inches this time?

The forecast portends dreary accumulations.

Where’s the joy?

The joy of building snow forts, packing snowballs, the shiver of delight as I watch the crystals of snow.

Ah! Snow angels.

Snow angels in the end zone at a football game.


A football game

Snow angel in the end zone

link to video

Joy in the snow. Was it the snow? Or the winning move? Or both?

What do you dread that was once a joy? When / why did that change?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOL22: #OneLittleWord

What a rich history of choosing a word to center myself. In order those words have been:

  • 2014    Transfer
  • 2015     Focus
  • 2016    Joyful
  • 2017    Brave
  • 2018    Curious
  • 2019    Celebrate
  • 2020 Envision
  • 2021 Willing

Combinations of verbs, nouns, and so many uses of words as they have also served as the wallpaper on my blog. This year followed last year’s slow steady beat creeping into my consciousness and inserting itself into my daily life.

But the typical dithering at the final decision point:

Something to be?

Something to have?

Which would best suit my thinking for the year?

Be patient or have patience?

Study was required and grammarly came to the rescue. link

Be patient:

“… someone who is not hasty, who can bear things calmly, or who remains unwavering when faced with adversity …”


This quote solidified my decision.

” “If the person you are talking to doesn’t appear to be listening, be patient. It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.” —A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

. . . a small piece of fluff in his ear. That whimsical description was the selling point.


Be patient

What word will choose you? How will you know?


Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum.

Check out the writers and readers here.

Screenshot 2019-01-29 at 3.12.16 AM.png

#SOL21: Words Matter

As it often does it began with a dm, a response, and then a tweet . . .
And then a response . . . And another response . . . All relate to the IES Practice Guide for Foundational Skills, #3. But what if, what happens when there isn’t enough time for all the components. What if the emphasis is “misplaced” or “overused” on one of the recommendations to the point that others are ignored or barely used?
/ough/ is lesson 7 in the 20 spelling rules found here. link

Are these the “right rules”? How many rules do students need to know? Does the practice guide say rules are necessary? How will you proceed?

Where do you begin? This post began with inquiry. A question. Responses. And then grounded in the research. And then a broader look at possible rules. No High Stakes decisions yet. More thinking. More opportunities to gather information and data.

What process do you use? Is it the most effective process? How do you know?

Steph Scrap Quilts

"Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads..."


A meeting place for a world of reflective writers.

Tim's Teaching Thoughts

Ideas and Reflections on Teaching

Hands Down, Speak Out

Listening and Talking Across Literacy and Math

Teachers | Books | Readers

Thirty-One Educators Connecting Students and Books

Dr. Carla Michelle Brown * Speaker * author * Educator

We have the perfect words. Write when you need them.

Curriculum Coffee

A Written Shot of Espresso

Mrs. Palmer Ponders

Noticing and celebrating life's moments of any size.


Seeking Ways to Grow Proficient, Motivated, Lifelong Readers & Writers

Doing The Work That Matters

a journey of growing readers & writers

Present Perfect

adventures in multiple tenses

The Blue Heron (Then Sings My Soul)

The oft bemused (or quite simply amused) musings of Krista Marx -- a self-professed HOPE pursuing Pollyanna

Middle English

Life as an English teacher leader

steps in the literacy journey

Walking the Path to Literacy Together


Smile! You’re at the best site ever

Resource - Full

Sharing Ideas, Strategies and Tools

Joel Pedersen

be that #oneperson