July 26, 2016
I started working in my classroom yesterday. As I consulted our schedule for the week of teacher work days that begin next Tuesday I saw that a lot of time was taken up by meetings, so I made a decision to work short days this week. I like to have a slow start to the school year, because I want to take the time to really think about the new year.
This summer I was fortunate enough to attend lots of professional development, both live and virtual. I also made a point to do plenty of professional reading. As I tried to synthesize it all in my head I decided it came down to passionate mentors. Wherever I was this summer I was inspired by passion.
As I sat in my classroom this morning I was looking at new ways to set up the room and I kept asking myself what these mentors would suggest. As I typed up the text from the first mentor text we will study in our narrative writing unit I heard Stacey Shubitz’s voice in my head-pushing me to find the power moves the author is making that I can teach to my future students. As I pull ideas to use in the first days of the new school year I really feel these mentors in the room with me. I love having the time to let all the ideas swirl around before the busy days of actually teaching start. I printed out book covers of books that I read this summer to create the first book door of the year- authors and illustrators are powerful mentors. I have yet to unearth last year’s plan book-the nitty gritty of planning will come soon enough, for now I am enjooying hearing the voices of others in the room with me.
Tomorrow I get to meet up with more mentors- students from my last year’s class are coming in to help clean up and organize the classroom. From them I will get to learn what books they loved this summer and how they had fun. Their energy and enthusiasm will inspire me to make this year the best one yet. Counting down the days until I get to meet my new class!