Friday, March 20, 2020

A Reflection on the Big Picture

This month I am participating in the 13th Annual Slice of Life Story Challenge. Visit Two Writing Teachers for more information.

One thing I am doing lots of these days is reading. I am a "book juggler," someone who reads multiple books at the same time. Typically, I always have three books going: a grown-up/personal read, a middle grade read, and a professional read. Currently, my personal read is The Two Lives of Lydia Bird by Josie Silver (really enjoying it so far), my middle grade read is Tornado Brain by Cat Patrick (an upcoming book that publishes in May), and my professional read is Engaging Literate Minds: Developing Children's Social, Emotional, and Intellectual Lives, K-3 by Peter Johnston and others (if Peter Johnston's name is on it then I need to read it!).


My professional read is always the book that takes me the longest to finish. I love stories and the escape they provide me, so I usually flip through the pages of a novel at a pretty rapid pace in anticipation of what is coming next. With my professional reads, I'm frequently stopping to highlight, write notes in the margin, and think about how what I'm reading applies to my own teaching and my students' learning. A quote from Engaging Literate Minds that made me stop and reflect is the one below.


When I think about the big picture for my students, I think about how I want them to have the literacy skills they will need to be successful learners, but also, ultimately, engaged and empowered citizens. I want them to read, write, speak, think, and listen in ways that will allow them to understand their world and communicate with others. I truly believe literacy is power and when we open doors to literacy for all learners, we help to make the world a better place. 

Johnston, P., Champeau, K., Hartwig, A., Helmer, S., Komar, M., Krueger, T., & McCarthy, L. (2020). Engaging literate minds: Developing children's social, emotional, and intellectual lives, K-3. Portsmouth, NH: Stenhouse.



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