Play Personality

Understanding child development is serious business, but teaching isn’t; teaching is about ensuring a joyful, challenging journey for each child.  How can we do that if we do not remain joyful and challenged ourselves? So which play personality are you? From Stuart Brown’s work, Kristi Mraz and Christine Hertz, the authors of Kids 1st from Day…

Lead Learner

I was already doing fifteen over the speed limit this morning when I looked up in my rear view mirror and saw the black Nissan with the symbol of its maker catching the light of the morning sun, as if it had recently been washed, or at least shined since the last drop of cloud-fall. …

A Walk in the Park

I left my computer at home today.  But I was sure to bring along my notebooks. My professional one, in case I decided to dig into my latest work on whole-group reading instruction. My fictional one, so that I could capture the thoughts that came to me as I was straightening my hair this morning. …

Prognosis

“I don’t like it.” He says what we’ve been thinking.  Of course it can’t be good.  “It’s better than it could have been.” The Mayo Clinic reports, “The most common cause of aphasia is brain damage resulting from a stroke — the blockage or rupture of a blood vessel in the brain. Loss of blood…

Greenbelt

Anniversary post? Check. Spring time in Colorado?  Check. Posts about Mom, Dad, my girl?  Check. Double check. Triple check. It is March after all.  The month that they say comes in like a lion and out like a lamb.  In my case, it comes in with a slicer, and out with a writer.  Each March I am…

Vices

Already I’ve closed one draft and started this one.  Closed it when I realized that the nails on most of my fingers are already gone and there is little left. I better get writing something else before I whittle them down to the quick. Because the one I was writing was making it worse.  For…

If this isn’t

“Is this rain or snow?” she asks.  My windshield wipers aren’t quite keeping up enough to be able to see what is falling before it hits. I kick them into high gear. “Rain, I think,” I tell her.  “At least for now.” The sun is setting somewhere behind us and we are headed back down…

Forty by Sixty

Right now there is an empty space at the bottom of our property. Estimates. Permits. Refinance and closing. Contractors pouring concrete, setting frames, attaching siding, setting joists, laying roof panels. Inspectors signing off. Then a weekend or more of moving, hauling, delivery and installation. So little stands between now and the days, come fall, when…

I Teach (Authentic Task #9)

What started out as a catchy title – No Assembly Required – became a series that set out to explore authentic literacy instruction in the most authentic way that I know how:  through reading and writing ourselves.  And though at times it felt like I was Going Solo, in my disenchantment for this vision, I knew,…

Ready for anything

Most days I wear contacts; wearing them lets me wear sunglasses and makes me feel put-together.  When it’s cloudy and grey or the end of a week of long nights, I’ll leave them at home in their cups on the counter. However, if it is a put-together day, I never leave home without my glasses….

Sip of life

7:12 Out the door, lidded mug in one hand, ceramic mug in another. Coffee in both.   8:39 One cup sits empty abandoned in the car; the other still scalds my throat to perfection.   3:47 Yes, please: A single, for now. Should probably eat as it goes down smooth, and, yes, another and a…

Defeat

In an elephant’s march I went to work, holding tails with other drivers who saw the lights atop the car that led the downhill march like our matriach.   Coming home, I drove too fast, with my heart still racing. And this time not an elephant’s tail but a dog’s defeated, tucked low behind me….