It began with a DM:
Coaching institute or writing institute?
And of course, there was no easy answer.
Knowledge, background, willingness and ability to THINK
Such a pleasure to meet that coach this week at the #TCRWP August Writing Institute and to sit in the front row together,
listening to Lucy Calkins together,
nourishing our social media connections and
our face to face interactions.
NOT on Twitter?
Then you are missing out on PD opportunities from your home like:
And I don’t say that lightly! What a great morning! More in another post! (Shana Frazin)
What was your story of Monday? What did you read or write?
I know 140 characters doesn’t cut it for some folks. Being concise is an art. But check out this blog post by my friend Sally Donnelly who I also met via Twitter and TWT for a beautiful summary of Lucy’s keynote with some staggeringly wonderful organization! I just have a glorious collection of stories!
Keynote – “Fun with Reading and Writing Blog”
Homework caused this post to be quick and light. More later!
Thank you, Betsy, Beth, Deb, Kathleen, Lanny, Melanie, and Stacey for this weekly forum. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here.
AND YES, My Craft Moves is now autographed by the Author! Thanks, Stacey!
Today’s call for slices from Margaret Simon at Reflections on the Teche immediately makes me think of HOW one gets better. Previous posts about professional development are here, here, and here. I love learning. I love learning with friends. Therefore, one of the best tools that I use for professional development is Twitter because it truly is exemplified by this graphic.
Learning. Identifying a topic. Identifying a need. Finding experts. Reading. Writing. Talking. Learning Together. There are many ways to “Better Oneself” and one of the fastest routes is through TWITTER!
Start the Challenge
If you’re on Facebook, go to this post of Mary C Howard’s (author of Good to Great) for her Twitter 5-3-1 Challenge.
“TWITTER 5-3-1 CHALLENGE:
So I’m posing a summer challenge that will take very little time.
Follow five people you admire. Just find them on Twitter and click the follow button on the far top right of their page.
Retweet or like three comments that inspired you. Just click on the comment and then the up/down arrows at the bottom middle and hit retweet (or like with the heart at the bottom).
Make one comment to a tweet every day (even “Thank you.”) Just click on the left arrow at the bottom right and type.
I promise you that my 5-3-1 challenge will enrich you beyond measure this summer. Twitter is a treasure chest of inspiration, ideas, articles, posts, and dedication. If you’re not using it even to a small degree, you’re cheating yourself. This summer is a great time to dip your toe in the Twitter pool. I promise you that you’ll be grateful you did!”
My only addition is to make it the 5 -3 – 1 – 1 Challenge.
The final 1 – Find a chat
Weekly chats might be #TCRWP on Wednesdays or #G2Great on Thursdays. Monthly chats might be #TitleTalk on the last Sunday of the month. Additional chats like #TWTBlog may be scheduled after a series of blog posts.
Why a Twitter Chat?
A Twitter Chat will give you an opportunity to “rub elbows” with the experts and grow your own knowledge base as well as your PLN. You will be amazed at the authors who are available to learn from as well as the inspiration, ideas, articles, and posts that Mary refers to above.
You are at the crossroad. You must make the decision.
How will you better yourself?
Join Margaret Simon at Reflections on the Teche for additional #DigiLitSunday posts here
Mentors . . .
I’ve had a few . . .
Where do I begin
To tell the story
Of how mentors have been my guide?
Mentors . . .
Mentors . . .
Teachers. . .
Authors . . .
Speakers . . .
Bloggers . . .
Technology wizards . . .
Mentors . . .
All with a digital presence
How do you connect with your mentors?
Those lengthy conversations as we learned, laughed and studied together. Asking questions, checking for understanding, and seeking new information . . . on our learning quests!
Online Book Study Groups
What Readers Really Do: Teaching the Process of Meaning Making by Dorothy Barnhouse and Vicki Vinton – It was a Twitter book study with Ryan, Allison, Julieanne, Sandy and many more included a grand finale with Vicki Vinton.
Good to Great Teaching: Focusing on the Literacy Work that Matters by Dr. Mary Howard – This continues to be a weekly chat #G2Great on Thursday evenings at 8:30 EST.
Who’s Doing the Work? How to Say Less So Readers Van Do More by Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris – This book study involved a combination of GoogleDocs and weekly Voxer responses.
A Mindset for Learning: Teaching the Traits of Joyful, Independent Growth! by Christine Hertz and Kristi Mraz – Book study and Twitter Chat
The Journey is Everything: Teaching Essays that Students Want to Write for People who Want to Read Them by Katherine Bomer – A book study that resulted in several “essay slices” that included GoogleDocs and a twitter chat.
The Book Love Foundation Podcast Summer Study Session with Penny Kittle – a Facebook group with video, readings, and responses each week.
Craft Moves: Lesson Sets for Teaching Writing with Mentor Texts by Stacey Shubitz – This book study involved a combination of Facebook responses and conversations with authors of the mentor texts from Stacey’s book.
Professional Development Facilitators who serve as mentors
- Lester Laminack
- Nell Duke
- Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan
- Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris
- Vicki Vinton
- Jennifer Serravallo
- Melissa Stewart
- Linda Hoyt
- Seymour Simon
- Dana Johansen and Sonja Cherry-Paul
- Lucy Calkins
- Chris Lehman
- Kate Roberts
- Maggie Roberts
- Cornelius Minor
- Colleen Cruz
- Mary Ehrenworth
- Kathleen Tolan
- Amanda Hartman
- Celina Larkey
- Katie Clements
- Shana Frazin
- Katy Wischow
- Brook Geller
- Liz Dunford Franco
- Brianna Parlitsis
- Meghan Hargrave
- Kristi Mraz
- Marjorie Martinelli
Many may be a part of the Two Writing Teachers “Slicer” group or this “DigiLitSunday group or just may be bloggers who I have learned from:
- Vicki Vinton
- Two Writing Teachers – Current bloggers Betsy, Beth, Dana, Deb, Kathleen, Lisa, Melanie, and Stacey (as well as Tara and Anna)
- Mary, Amy and Jenn at Literacy Lenses
- Mary Lee
- Leigh Anne
- Shana and Katy
- Clare and Tammy
- Burkins and Yaris
- Katie and Kristin
Authors of Books about Mentor Texts
(If you need last names for those authors of books about mentor texts, you can check them out in this post!)
So I’m apologizing to those literacy mentors who I left out in error – one of the disadvantages of making lists – but the point of my post is that these mentors, many of whom are in MORE than one list are all people that I know in the digital world as well as the physical world.
Through Twitter, Voxer, #TCRWP, ILA and NCTE, my horizons have expanded exponentially. Now my mentors come from many, many states across this country. All delightful folks that I have had the priviledge of learning with and beside . . . Mentors and Friends!
How do we know the impact that your mentors have had?
These pictures reflect my most recent thinking with some of my mentors! Can you name them?
If you’ve studied the background in my blog, you have seen that my #OneLittleWord “Joy” has been with me for quite awhile.
Where is that joy?
Yesterday, I was cocooned in joyful.
Joyful was in Voxer Posts.
Joyful was in Facebook Posts.
Joyful was in tweets.
There are days when the Alpha and Omega of joyful seems to reside in social media. Sadly that means that the Joyful is not easily visible in some of my work days. Sometimes the day to day trivia is wearing – mentally and physically. It’s hard to summon laughter and truly celebrate “JOY”! But yesterday JOY surrounded me everywhere.
Joy is here in these videos . . .
What is your hope? via #ParkwaySchools (3:14)
Who will be in your classroom this year? via Four O’Clock Faculty (2:04)
If you feel like you need a new life via Power of Positivity (0:51)
Are you planning a “Global Welcome Back to School” this year?
Or what about “Making Joy a Reading Standard”?
How will you spread JOY this year?
How will you be Joyful?
What will it look like?
What will it sound like?
Thank you, Betsy, Beth, Dana, Deb, Kathleen, Lisa, Melanie, and Stacey for this weekly forum. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here.
What is your #OLW? Are you serving it well?
Writing about Day 4,
Anticipating how Day 5 will go,
Downloaded Nine, Ten.
Opened Nine, Ten.
“Everyone will mention the same thing, and if they don’t, when you ask them, they will remember. It was a perfect day.”
Rush, Rush, Rush.
Pack, Toss, Go.
Downloaded Raymie Nightingale.
Opened Raymie Nightingale.
“There were three of them, three girls.”
Revise, Plan, Revise – Finish that homework.
Worry just a bit about the weight of the carry on suitcase.
Tweet about need for book 3 for flight.
Boarding pass screenshot saved in gallery.
Repack day/work bag.
What do I REALLY need for today?
Checking to see if there’s a long-lost “un-read” book on my kindle.
Something about writing Day 4 post that seems too rushed . . .
Not ready for Day 5
It’s too soon . . .
The beginning of the end!
Enough! What about Day 4?
Rev Up Your Teaching Muscles to Make Your Whole Group Instruction as Potent as Possible (Mini-lessons, Shared Reading, Read Aloud) (K-2)
We brainstormed a list of all the things that could go wrong in shared reading and then came up with some solutions. What fabulous work for a grade level PLC or vertical PLC? How many different ways can we solve those recurring issues? If we don’t have the solution, we can reach out and pose the question on Twitter or check into the topics of the weekly #TCRWP Twitter Chats!
Pace . . . speeding up our instruction, and adding a bit more enthusiasm and excitement did help meet the “Engaging and Engaged” criteria. It’s not about being a “mini-Amanda”(which would be amazing!), but it is about considering exactly which behaviors contribute to the success of a lesson. So many ways to check in on students – thumbs up, turn and talk, act out, share outs – without slowing down to wait for 100% of the students!
- Teaching students how to self-evaluate is so important ~ Even on Day One in kindergarten!
- Lean teaching – less teacher talk and more student talk and work is critical – I already know it!
- Shared Reading – Use a story telling voice; not a point to every word boring voice!
- Not every Read Aloud book has a book introduction. Don’t kill your Read Alouds. Know your purpose!
- Do you know Houndsley and Catina? Such great characters with so many problems!
Beyond Guided Reading: Expanding Your Repertoire of Small Group Work in Nonfiction (3-8)
Today we saw some different options for note taking for small groups. The key is to record the information that is vital for continuing on. Did you check in on Joey? Ok? Not? Quick notes – no complete sentences needed – that will keep the groups and you moving forward.
We also presented our series of three lessons and had some superb coaching that led to our revision assignment for tomorrow! YAY, Revision! Fixing and making stronger YET leaner! What a challenge. Not more words . . . but more precise words! Clarity in the Teaching Point and Link!
But the amazing part was watching Kathleen, quite masterfully, run three different groups in the room at the same time in 12 minutes. Simply amazing. All three groups were working on different goals. All three groups had some group and individual time with the teacher. It did NOT seem rushed. But yet there was a sense of urgency and a need to get busy and accomplish the work!
- Written Teaching Points keep you focused!
- Try 2 simultaneous groups. Assign locations and then get all students working on reading first!
- Know what your end goal is!
- Have your tools and texts organized with extras handy!
- Give it a go! Nothing ventured; nothing gained!
The Intersection of Guided Reading, Strategy Lessons and Book Clubs
Key Principles of Small Group Work:
- Kids do the heavy lifting.
- Small group work is flexible.
- Small group work is assessment – based.
- Small group work is for EVERYONE. (so is independent work)
- Small group work empowers kids. (set goals, work with partners, or lead own group)
- Small group work builds skills over time. (cannot master in 10 min. – or expect transfer)
I loved creating this chart (putting Katie’s info into the boxes) to compare the three types of small group instruction that we typically see in classrooms. How are they alike? How are they different?
|Guided Reading||Strategy Lessons||Book Clubs|
|Who?||Kids reading at or close to same reading level||Kids who need help with the same skill, goal, or reading habit
Not level dependent
|Kids who read at or near the same reading level|
|What?||Teacher – selected texts
Slightly above independent reading level
|Usually kids’ independent reading books||Kids have limited choice over the books
Multiple copies of the same title
|Why?||Move kids up levels||Help kids strengthen reading skills, goals, habits
Deepen reading, writing, talk about books
Provide authentic reading experiences
|How it goes?||Book introduction
Kids read/teacher coaches responsively
Ends with conversation and a teaching point
|Begins with a teaching point and brief teach
Kids try to do the work with teacher coaching
Ends with a link
|Kids develop agendas for reading, thinking, jotting
Teachers coach in to support skill work and talk
- Book clubs provide so much student choice and need to be used more frequently.
- Book introductions can definitely go more than one way – so helpful to SEE two different ones for the same book.
- Scaffold student work – figurative language can be found on this page that I have pre-posted for you. (Student finds word -Teacher has narrowed down to this page, and this one, and this one! – So smart!)
- All students reading before teacher starts coaching tends to lead to lean coaching. (Not answering task questions)
- Think as you read. When do you wish for a tool? Something to help you through a tricky part? That’s what students need!
How important is community to adult readers? To our novice readers?
How do teachers practice enough to be “skilled” at their teaching/coaching craft?
New York City
This rural Iowa dweller says thanks for all the opportunities:
for face to face meet ups with friends from Twitter, Twitter chats, and Voxer,
to be able to chat excitedly with fellow Slicers, bloggers and authors,
to dine in all sorts of fabulous places,
and in such great company.
Attending the musical “Fun Home”in the Round was magical.
Ahh, the bookstores
Jazz at Smoke
So much to see and do
While in NYC
For #TCRWP’s Writing Institute
Because the learning does NOT stop when the sessions end!
The conversations, the questions, the talk about “What are you reading?” and “What are you writing?” continues into the night!
A glorious week long adventure!
Thanks to you, my friends
And Lucy and ALL at the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project.
And what about the learning on Day 4?
I begin, again, at the end,
the eloquence of Pam Nunoz Ryan
who brought us to tears with her harmonica rendition of “America the Beautiful”.
Thanks to Fiona Liddell and Twitter for this picture.
What an eloquent author and so nice to hear the backstory, see the grids of characters and plot, as well as the research that went into Echo – a MUST READ book for your #TBR (To Be Read) list.
- Find your passion.
- Thank those who help you find your passion.
- Writing a novel is hard but rewarding work.
- Stories matter, stories matter, stories matter!
- Rereading stories is important!
Have you read Echo?
Please reserve it at your local public library NOW!
Choice Workshop – Colleen Cruz
Editing Does Matter: Spelling, Grammar, and Vocabulary in a Writing Workshop
To think about when teaching Spelling, Grammar, and Vocabulary:
Teach into developmental level so it will stick. What do they know? What are they trying to approximate? We looked at a student piece of work. What can this student do?
- Curriculum and standards What should we teach?
What do my standards say that the students need to learn by the end of the year?
Just as revision is not taught only once in the writing process; editing is taught more than once in writing process. First time – teach in editing (comma in clause) in order to lessen the cognitive load for the students. Then the second time teach comma in clause during revision. And for the third time, the student can focus on the comma when generating ideas in his/her notebook. The repetition will be helpful for students!
Each time we revisit the skill, our methods may vary – or not! The typical methods are:
b. Apprenticeship – Mentor author – Example
c. Inquiry- let’s see what we find in the world and then find patterns (bio, /er/ was/were)
The tools can either be Teacher created or Student created. For grammar it may be a series of books to cover the variations in journalism grammar, grammar for fiction writer, or grammar for academic writing. It may be fun grammar books, vocabulary picture books, mentor texts, or student examples. Or it may be editing pens, gel pens, or other irresistible editing tools. Quite literally, physical tools like Mini editing checklists with 2 or 3 things they are checking for! Whatever they are into! Students can make their own reminder sheets! Work with grammar, spelling and vocabulary should be in the spirit of FUN and Exploration. NO RULES for number of spaces after a period. Talk about conventional understandings. How do people expect it to go?
- Perfection in writing is not the goal for 9 year old students. The New York Times allows four errors per page with page writers and paid copyeditors. No published piece of writing in the world has ever been 100% perfect.
- If you are writing with passion and focusing on content, writing will slip when you are“letting it rip”. Errors are a good sign because they indicate risk-taking.
- Post “not perfect” student work on the hallway bulletin board. Make a huge label and Celebrate – “Check out our capital letters and end punctuation. We’ve been working hard on them and ALMOST have them!”
- Kids fall into automatic, manual, wrong – if kids aren’t automatic, it does not mean they are lazy , not trying, or don’t care. It just means they haven’t mastered that skill YET.
- Conventions, spelling, grammar, and vocabulary work should be FUN and PLAYFUL!
How does your instruction in Spelling, Grammar and Vocabulary match up?
What’s one change that you would consider?
International Literacy Association 2015
Did you see all of these resources posted on Twitter this last week? Just one more reason that you all should be on Twitter for the professional resources and connections! (Check out the 30 blue live links!) In the interest of “organizing my files” from #ILA15, here are some resources that you might want to review!
Shiza Shahid – This is her TED talk, not her ILA speech, but well worth your time!
Professor Nana’s “Summing it Up”
ILA Literacy Daily:
Bruce Lansky’s Poetry Olio Recap “Saturday Night Live”
Education Week: “Focus on the Standards without the Words ‘Common Core'”
Teachers for Teachers (Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan):
Pernille Ripp’s “The Five Truths of Reading”
Heinemann #ILA15 Live Blog
Katheleen Smith’s Notes from 7/18 at ILA
Miss Miller’s “Because of ILA: Take Aways and Bring Backs”
Carol Varsalona’s “Positively Undone and Renewed”
Professor Nana’s “What the ‘L’, Part 2”
Vicki Day’s “Reflecting on #ILA15 – Number 1 Take Away”
and then in case you missed them, my posts about #ILA15:
- #ILA15: One Week and Counting
- #ILA15 Begins Tomorrow!!!
- #ILA15 Begins . . . Reading with Rigor
- #ILA15: Pre-Conference Day Learning
- #ILA15: Day 1 Treasure Trove
- #ILA15: Treasures Continued
- #ILA15: Sunday Treasures
- #ILA15: Monday Finale
- #ILA15 Reprise
Have you added any new blogs to follow?
Will you plan to attend #ILA16 in Boston next July?
Two blog posts this week caught my eye and lingered in my brain. They were Jessica Lifshitz’s “A Different Kind of PD (AKA Thank You Kate Roberts and Chris Lehman)” linked here and Lisa Saldivar’s “Assigning vs. Teaching” here. Jessica is a 5th grade teacher in Chicago and Lisa is an Elementary ELA Coordinator in Los Angeles.
How do I know Jessica and Lisa? I follow them on Twitter and they participated in online chats last week.
How did I find out about their blogs? The links were both tweeted out on Twitter.
Have I ever met them? No, not YET!
Stop for a second.
What was the content of the last Professional Development session where you left energized, inspired and ready to move forward with implementing the learning?
Energy, enthusiasm and excitement were present in both their posts. The three presenters referenced above, Kate Roberts, Chris Lehman (Falling in Love with Close Reading), and Cornelius Minor, are awe-inspiring and passionate about increasing literacy learning for students without drudgery. They are also FUN to listen to in a PD setting! You can hear Cornelius Minor in a podcast here. If you haven’t yet seen them in person, you need to add them to your “must do” list!
Focus: What is professional learning?
I shared this model back in September because the work of Joyce and Showers is embedded in the thinking and development of this model that has “Student learning – at the center of school improvement and staff development”! (Research-based, YES! and a model of how good things can be!)
You can read more about the model here and also about CCSS.Writing Anchors 1-3 here for content of a two hour PD session with absolutely 0 power point slides but a lot of talk and “studying of texts”. Teachers had the opportunity to read new/revisit familiar texts to deepen their understanding of writing techniques and build a common language, K-5, across argument, informational and narrative texts.
Where can you find joyful and inspiring PD on your own?
There are many quality sources of PD. I encourage you to leisurely explore the following resources until you find one that you cannot live without! Additional details are listed for: blogs, twitter hash tags, twitter book chats, twitter blog chats, scheduled Twitter chats, and face-to-face presentations.
Reading a steady diet of blogs can inform your work. Leaving comments on the blogs can also lead to conversations and even other blogs you might want or need to follow!
Must read literacy blogs include:
- Vicki Vinton’s blog “To Make a Prairie” – Of interest to you might be this specific post “Learning vs Training – The Power of Real Professional Development“
- Melanie Meehan’s blog – one of the two authors of “Two Reflective Teachers” and this post “Exploring a Fabulous Mentor Text”
- Tammy Mulligan and Clare Landrigan’s blog, “Teachers for Teachers”, where they describe themselves as “… staff developers who are still teachers at heart. We believe that effective professional development includes side by side teaching; discussions of current research; analysis of student work; and mutual trust and respect.” A post that may be of interest is “Applying Some ‘Brain Rules’ to Professional Development“
- Jan Burkins and Kim Yaris’s blog, “Burkins & Yaris Think Tank for 21st Century Literacy” and a favorite post, “The Power of Job-Embedded Coaching” that contains additional references to the work of Joyce and Showers
- Two Writing Teachers (and that will also lead you to the amazing blogs written by the SIX authors!)
- and many great teacher blogs like Julieanne’s “To Read, To Write, To Be“; Mary Lee’s “A Year of Reading“; Steve’s “Inside the Dog“; Christina’s “The Teacher Triathlete“; and Taylor’s “The Formative Feedback Project“.
2. Twitter hashtags
Twitter hashtags begin with the “#” sign and can be real or made up. Some hashtags exist for a long time (not saying forever because who REALLY knows what “forever” means in the “TwitterVerse”) or they can be hashtags created for a specific event (and possibly linger after through posts/discussions).
Examples for meetings / conferences:
#NatRRConf – National Reading Recovery Conference
#WSRA15 – Wisconsin Reading Association 2015 Conference
#NCTE14 – National Council of Teachers of English 2014 Conference
Examples of enduring hashtags (may want to have a dedicated column in Tweetdeck or Tweetchums):
#tcrwp – Teachers College Reading and Writing Project
#wonderchat – Wonder Chat
#tlap – Teach Like a Pirate
3. Twitter Book Chats
Twitter Book Chats are on line discussions of books (often with questions posted in advance in a google document) where readers and lurkers meet to answer questions and grow their own knowledge. Powerful twitter book chats often include the authors responding to the questions as well!
#filwclosereading – Falling in Love with Close Reading (book and presentations by @teachkate and @ichrislehman linked above)
#wrrdchat – What Readers Really Do by Dorothy Barnhouse and Vicki Vinton
#NNNchat – Notice and Note @kylenebeers and @bobprobst
#wildreading – Donalyn Books
#booklove – Penny Kittle
#G2Great – Good to Great @DrMaryHoward
4. Twitter Blog Chats
Twitter Blog Chats are often used to introduce an upcoming series of blog posts or to even wrap up a series of blog posts where the readers can interact with the blog authors.
#TWTBlog – Aim Higher: Outgrow old goals and set new ones with the chat archive here
#T4Tchat – sponsored by Teachers for Teachers with the last chat storified here – Mid-Year Assessments Got You Down?
5. Scheduled Twitter Chats
#tcrwp – Teachers College Reading and Writing Project (Wed. 7:30 pm EST)
#educoach – Educational Coaches (Wed. 9:00 pm CST)
#titletalk – Promote reading and book titles that engage students (Last Sunday of each month from 8-9 pm EST)
#iaedchat – Iowa Educators (Sundays 8 am and 8 pm CST)
Many content areas and grade levels host their own chats – check out this list! (36 chats on the list last night between 5:30 and 10:00 pm!)
6. Face to Face Presentations
Face to Face Presentations are often jazzed up to include a hashtag so participants can follow along or a back channel like “Today’s Meet” where participants can be posting favorite quotes or questions in real time while the session is taking place. Today’s Meet is often used when there are multiple presenters so the non-presenter is monitoring the channel to feed to other partners/panel members or to address /build purposeful connections for all parts of the presentation.
Which of these 6 have you used to find your own joyful and inspiring professional development?
What about your peers? Where do they find joyful and inspiring PD?
(If you didn’t answer these questions in three seconds or less, click on a link above and find something you are interested in . . . NOW!!!)
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 share our work.
“Tell the theme of your lives,” said Lucy Calkins yesterday (Monday, june 23, 2014) during her opening keynote at Riverside Church.
One theme of June 2014 Writing Institute is the people you meet both face to face and on Twitter. Why use Twitter? I am so impressed with the collegiality of the people that I know professionally, on-line, that I have also met in person.
Let’s start with Allison Jackson (@azajacks). We met face to face last year during the Writing Institute and our friendship has flourished especially after multiple on-line book chats. We’re enjoying seeing the sights of New York City and our conversations about both personal and professional lives – especially books!
Because of Twitter, I know Stacey Shubitz (@raisealithuman), of Two Writing Teachers fame. Because of Twitter conversations, we saved her a seat at Riverside Church and visited before the keynote. We met up with Stacey and Lisa Keeler (@rdgtchr13) for lunch today. Lisa was also just one pew behind us in Riverside Church yesterday. It was so easy to connect because “we already knew each other on Twitter.”
Because I know Stephanie Hardinger (@mshardinger) who is not attending, I also know her teaching partner Jake (@jakeban18) who is here at TCRWP and in both of my advanced sections. It just seems like there is less awkwardness when you already “know” the person through Twitter!
Another great Tweep, who I have followed on-line that is in my morning session, is Christina Nosek (@ChristinaNosek) who is at TCRWP with a group of teachers. She is already blogging about her writing assignments here.
Last year I met Ryan Scala (@rscalateach) and Sandy Brumbaum (@sbrumbaum). Ryan’s school is still in session but he will be at the Reading Institute next week and we hope to meet up with him later this week. Sandy is also in my second advanced session.
Tara Smith (@TaraSmith5), also of Two Writing Teachers, is currently at Boothbay but plans to meet up with us later this week to share our learning experiences. Ericka Perry (@perrer1) who learned Twitter alongside me last year at the Institute is also back again this summer.
Mollie Welsh Kruger (@molliewk) and I met this afternoon. Mollie is on the faculty at Bank Street College just down the street. It was such fun discussing both YA and professional literature as well as talking about classes taught as adjunct faculty member.
I am sure that I have left many folks out – and for that I apologize – but this quick post invites you to follow and learn from all folks at #tcrwp. It’s a great community of learners.
And the @TCRWP staff: Lucy joked that we would add 5 million Tweets in her keynote! I’ve met Amanda Hartman (@amandalah), the Associate Director for TCRWP, and she retweets my tweets and encourages others to follow me. She’s a rockstar herself. This year I’ve also met Emily Smith (@emilyjbsmith), Katie Clements (@Clemenkat), and Rebecca Cronin (@RebeccaCronin2). When added to last year’s Mary Ehrenworth (@maryehrenworth), Kathleen Tolan (@KathleenMTolan), and Colleen Cruz (@Colleen_Cruz ), the #TCRWP community is incredibly supportive.
Check it out yourself! Continue to learn after you leave the 2014 June Summer Writing Institute!
Tuesday is the day to share a “Slice of Life” with Two Writing Teachers. Check out the writers, readers and teachers here.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
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:
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
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)