Yeah! It’s summer! The time when teachers don’t have to work. Right? Ha! This is the time for me when my work is a little more relaxed, but I’m still working – working to improve and better myself so I can be the best educator I can be for my students. This is the time I can try out new ideas, read those texts that have been sitting on my shelf or virtual book shelf for months. Sometimes, I wake up on mornings when I don’t have anything scheduled, and I’m almost paralyzed because I don’t know where to start. All the choices are overwhelming!
This summer, I’m participating in a virtual writing workshop called Teachers Write. I’ve committed to write almost everyday and participate in a group of almost 700 teachers and librarians across the country who will be sharing their writing as well. How can I ask my students to do something that I don’t do myself? Just in the last two days, I’ve made some discoveries about my own writing that will enable me to relate and help my students. It’s only the second official day of summer, and I’m already excited about next year.
Next year, I will be asking my students to take risks and try something new. How can I do that, if I don’t do it myself? So, I decided to start a blog to hold and share some of the writing pieces from this summer as well as reflections. As you can see it’s not perfect, but like our students and us, it is a work in progress – a living work.
Here is the link to Teachers Write if you are interested: www.katemessner.com/blog/.
Today, the second day, we had a quick write prompt in which we wrote about a favorite place. Here is my paragraph I shared:
Climbing over the dunes, the roar of the water greets me as if saying, “It’s about time you showed up,” and the roar subsides into a tinkling while the water laps sand from the beach like my cat lapping water from her bowl. The sea gulls caw-call good morning. As my toes barely touch the white sands of the beach in Port Aransas, Texas, my childhood washes over me like the waves wash ashore. I don’t run across the sandy road this time, but happily struggle in my flip-flops across the dry, searing sand to the water while my kids call to me from the small stake of beach they have claimed as “ours”. In the distance, oil tankers creep along the horizon, while under my toes tiny, unidentifiable creatures are ripped from their resting place then deposited farther inland only to dig furiously into the sand before hungry seagulls swoop in for a quick meal. I wade through pockets of fishy air walking toward the water. The smell hits you almost as quickly as it leaves you, but it’s not unpleasant. Not able to take the heat anymore, I walk into the gulf, the water licking my legs providing immediate relief from the heat. I unexpectedly stumble into a deeper part, and the water changes temperature by about 10 degrees, almost chilly, but soon I’m climbing onto a sand bar and wading through the greenish-bluish-brownish water looking for sand dollars. Just one of the treasures you can find on the Port Aransas beaches.
If you are a teacher or librarian, it’s not too late to join the camp. You can also check out the Facebook page. I would link it here, but haven’t figured that out yet-still working on it.