As I was organizing my books these last few weeks, I noticed that my library is rich with what I will call picture books. I was also aware that my library lacks a variety of chapter books. I have tons of Beverly Cleary, My Father's Dragon Trilogy (my favorite by the way)...but not much else. That is when I got to thinking I would put it out there and see if my readers (if there are any in the first place) could suggest some chapter books to enrich my library for a building that has students up to 4th grade. Let me know about those old favorites or maybe some new exciting books. Thanks for your help!!
When I taught second grade, one of my favorite units of study in the Reading Workshop was all about dialogue! We discussed what it was, how to read it and apply it to really comprehending the text. My husband would agree with me that dialouge can be one of my favorite things to do! Then I got to thinking...what about teacher dialogue? Could we get the conversations going? Could we turn little snippets of talk in the workroom or lounge into meaningful discussions that would improve and enhance our teaching? That is how Think Tank was born. We set up a casual time to come together and discuss literacy. It was a great way to continue those conversations. With PLCs (Professional Learning Communities), PLNs (Professional Learning Networks) and Think Tanks, our ideas can take flight and our teaching can get stronger. So, let's get out there and talk. Who knows where it can lead us?!?
With July flying by so quickly and August sailing on, I am gearing up for my new challenge. All teachers have that feeling of excitement as the back to school catalogs begin to come out. It's that feeling of a new adventure getting underway. This year, it feels different. I am reminded of my first year teaching when I went about getting the room ready, but had not fully braced myself for the whirlwind that would come next. As I am beginning to move things into my room, I am trying to be careful to set up a welcoming environment loaded with inviting books. My love for reading is genuine and I want nothing more than students to feel the same. I'm setting up book nooks and brightly colored displays to send out the invitation that the room is a safe place to read and more importantly take risks. I am trying to keep in mind that, as teachers, we need to work to change our culture that says mistakes are bad. Kids need to feel safe and able to make mistakes to learn. When they can have meaningful discussions about their learning, that is what it is all about! My wise mom maintained throughout her life that many times, we learn more from our mistakes in life...how true! Anyway, with the room getting ready and my high hopes for the year, this is my invitation to come along on my learning journey. And, if I make some mistakes along the way...the more learning for me too!