Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Slice of Life: Teachers Write 6/18

Ruth and Stacey at Two Writing Teachers
host the Slice of Life every Tuesday.

This summer I am so excited to participate again in Teachers Write, an online writing camp for teachers.  Last summer, I signed up and jumped in with both feet because I knew that in order to be the best writing teacher I can be I needed to also be a writer.  I was also participating in a two-week summer institute through the National Writing Project and knew that I would be forced to write whether I wanted to or not.  I did write quite often last summer, but I didn't exactly make the commitment to writing daily or making the time for writing that I needed to make.  I obsessed over my summer #bookaday challenge and went a little bit nuts with the reading.  

This summer I again want to make time for writing and I am committing to making time daily to write.  If I could do it for the Slice of Life challenge in March, I can do it now.

Some great things came out of my participation with Teachers Write last summer.  First, I wrote more often on my blog this year.  Next, I got my students writing on their blogs more regularly and even set up some collaboration with students in another class.  Lastly, I learned about being vulnerable.  I really did not participate to the highest degree last summer because I did not find that great idea that was going to be the next Harry Potter...I am a perfectionist and it is really hard to admit that I am not going to write polished, amazing writing in the first draft.  I have some ideas for interesting characters and I will be throwing those around this summer as well as working on crafting some memoir short stories.

My participation in Teachers Write this summer will be focused on some concrete goals:

1. Create writing notebook pages using the bingo cards that I purchased from Corbett Harrison so that I can use these to show students what I expect them to do in writing.
2. Develop the idea that I have for a novel and do some word count goals to get a good start on the draft.
3. I did NaNoWriMo in my classroom last year and it was the best thing that I could have done. I was so pleasantly surprised by the enthusiasm all of my students displayed for this activity.  I want to use the workbook from the NaNoWriMo website to work through pre-writing activities so that I have examples for my students when we do these exercises.
4. Post It's Monday! and Slice of Life posts on Mondays and Tuesdays.  Then post at least one other time in the week, most likely with reviews.  (Also, the quick write prompts and exercises from authors)
5. Play with my writing territories list and heart map ideas to come up with some memoir drafts and poems.  Do as I would expect my students to do and produce multiple pieces of writing in different genres.

I am expecting quite a commitment from myself because I expect a lot of writing from my students.  If I don't change my patterns and make time for writing, how can I realistically expect that from them?  If I can't go beyond my fears of failure, how can I expect my students to do this?

I hope that I can keep up with my goals and really make the time for writing that I plan to do.  I know that the more experience that I get with writing, the better it will be for my students.  Who knows? Maybe my story is just waiting to be found.


  1. Teachers Write is such an incredible PD opportunity. I cannot wait to hear more about it from you and other Slicers who are participating again this year.

  2. I like that you are starting out with these in mind. Enjoy! It sounds like you will indeed have many opportunities to play with your territories list.

  3. I'm glad you wrote about this- I recently signed up to try it this year. I chickened out last year, so I hope I will follow through! I like your idea of setting goals for yourself. I should do that, too!

  4. Andrea,
    Thank your for sharing your goals. They are quite ambitious. I am joining Teachers Write for the first time. I am looking forward to learning from this writing community. You've inspired me to put some thoughts into my goals before I begin.