Tuesday, July 14, 2015

{a summer learning life} #sol15


The Slice of Life is
hosted at the Two Writing Teachers
Join in and share a slice of your life. 
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As a teacher, of course, I enjoy my summers.  It's not the three months that most people think it is. (But you already know that.)  It is still plenty of time to be missing the kids like crazy, but I'm currently not missing the busy schedule and daily stresses of wanting to do more and be better in the classroom and also at home.  Summer is a time when I can breathe (my one little word) and do so much more -- always thinking about getting ready for a fresh new year of possibility.   

I'm enjoying my long days with my five year old daughters.  I'm able to squeeze in a little time for myself to read and write (almost daily), even if it's still after they are in bed peacefully sleeping.  My days are full and focused on my girls, but I'm able to find valuable learning opportunities to push myself to be a better mother and teacher.

Reading.  I'm reading lots of picture books with my daughters.  We make many trips to the library.   I love picking up the newest books from the library or the ones that are rated with a 'must read' seal of approval from colleagues on Goodreads or Twitter.  We see the beauty of books, even when Daddy can't understand how we could have 133 books checked out from the library.  I'm reading adult books this summer too!  Rarely can I find the time to read a real grown up book as my to be read pile of picture books and MG books consume my reading life, but that's a good problem.  I'm also reading professional development books.  I have way too many sitting in this stack as well (another good problem).  I'm reading blogs and articles and tweets and emails and everything in between.


Writing.  I scribble in my notebook.  I jot a note on a post it to hold a thought. Sometimes it only consists of a list of to do tasks or grocery items.  I'm writing comments on blog posts, educational and personal.  I'm writing more with my girls too.  They are drawing and illustrating and I help them with the sounding out of words to label or record a love message.  They are seeing that words hold weight.
  That writing is powerful.  That words express meaning.  That stories hold possibility.  
So, I'm dabbling in writing a little here.  I gave myself permission to take a week or two off from writing a Tuesday Slice of Life.  And I missed it.  I missed sharing.  I missed connecting with you.  Sometimes I need that to grow as a writer too.  Because I missed sharing a story, my story.  


Learning.  Every day I'm learning about myself and learning about how to do better at home and at school.  I'm participating and co-hosting  #cyberPD, an online event that connects educators in collaborative professional conversations centered around a common professional book title.  This summer we are reading Digital Reading: What's Essential by Franki Sibberson and Bill Bass.  It's an amazing event that is an authentic cyber-opportunity where I am intentionally pushing my thinking about digital literacy through connecting with other educators.  Quite a smart group with lots of ideas! (I hope you check it out!)  I have also jumped into the Voxer ring and I'm sharing and learning with other reading specialists who push me to think about our role in our schools.  I'm also preparing for an awesome weekend in St. Louis at the ILA conference with two of the greatest colleagues!


Reflecting.  Summer life slows a bit than during the crazy hectic school year.  I have more time to stop and think.  I ponder and question.  I reflect on what went well last year and what I need to change up for next school year.  I take more time to reflect and plan with purpose.  I add thoughts to my notebook and google doc of ideas.  I'm reflecting on my reading and my writing.  I'm sharing my learning on my blog about the #cyberPD book and thinking about the comments left behind.  Teachers need more time in the school day to do more reflecting as do students.  Amazing what a couple minutes of reflection can do.


Growing.  As a mother and an educator, I'm always growing to be the best me I can be at home and in the classroom.  I learn from an amazing group in many different communities in real life and online.  Because you share, I continue to grow.  And I thank you for this.  

I'm enjoying my {summer learning life}.



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Image from icanread tumblr

14 comments:

  1. I love the way you've captured this...reading, writing, learning, reflecting. All are so important in refueling and renewing our energy to teach. And yet, you keep what's most important at the center...time with your family.

    Thanks for sharing a slice of your life!
    Susan

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  2. Summer...such an essential boost to our lives! I, like you, am so appreciative of long days where there is time to reflect, learn and grow! Keep enjoying!

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  3. Michelle, I am excited to learn that you will be at #ILA15. I will be presenting with my team and will send you the flyer. I hope we can schedule a meet-up or maybe you will join our interactive presentation. The line that resonated with me: I gave myself permission to take a week or two off from writing a Tuesday Slice of Life. I have been so busy lately with trying to get out a digital newsletter, preparing for #edcampldr and #ILA15 presentations, hosting a summer get-together, and more that I need to borrow your OLW breathe.

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  4. Happy to hear about your summer, Michelle. It sounds like many of us, and although I'm retiring, I'm still reading, writing, learning, reflecting, and looking forward to my next step. I'm glad to know you & follow the girls' growth along with your teaching life too, and #CyberPD. What a gift you, Cathy & Laura give to everyone each summer! Thank you!

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  5. You live your life intentionally, making sure that what you value gets your attention and time. You set a good example. I am glad you share your story and thoughts.

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  6. So glad that you are getting some much needed "me" time along with enjoying your summer time fun with the girls.

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  7. Summer life is a time to breathe a bit deeper and savor moments a little longer. Wow, that's a lot of books checked out! I think our library has a 50 book limit. I'm going to ILA too, maybe we can find each other in a session. :-)

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  8. This line from your writing is so true - "Amazing what a couple minutes of reflection can do." We love that we have more time to think and reflect in the summer. Hope to see you at ILA

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  9. Our summer plans intersect in several ways. It is such a great way to recharge and refresh and some of us LOVE summer pd:)

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  10. Sounds like you are having a terrific summer! I love the extra time to read (hurray for adult books, I rarely read those during the school year) and write and just hang out! And then you have ILA to look forward to! I'm sure it will be fabulous! Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

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  11. A teacher's learning life never stops, right? And in between all that learning is spending family time, too. Summer is a wonderful time.

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  12. A teacher's learning life never stops, right? And in between all that learning is spending family time, too. Summer is a wonderful time.

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  13. Like you, I love summer for the flexible time that allows me to do more reading, connect with other teachers (like cyberPD..thank you for that), writing and time with family. It sounds like you are having a wonderful summer!!

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  14. You have captured so much of what summer is for me too. Thank you.
    I love your word breathing. It's how I feel about summer. While thinking and learning and planning for next year, I am thankful that it feels like time is moving slower for a little while.

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts.