Today I join my fellow bloggers in "serving up a slice"
to the Tuesday Slice of Life (SOL) community.
Thanks to Stacey, Betsy, Dana, Beth, Kathleen, Deb, Lisa, and Melanie
Our faith community is a small one, but we're like a small family. So this past weekend when a young man's girlfriend visited Seattle and then came to church on Sunday, we were excited to meet her. I was especially excited when I learned that Caitlin will begin a year of intern teaching in 8th grade Language Arts this fall. I wanted to show her all my favorite teaching books, introduce her to all my favorite bloggers, and share some of my favorite web sites. I wanted to assure her that this profession is worthy of her finest efforts.
Last night I attended our 8th grade graduation. They are the last group of sixth graders I taught before retirement, now headed off to high school. Our graduation speakers are always the students themselves. They write a memoir piece about their middle school years and from those pieces, our faculty select a few pieces to be shared at graduation. Prominently featured in the writing that is shared is the importance that a teacher played in a student's life. And Caitlin, you may be that teacher for some student!
But back to my original intent of this slice . . . sending a note to share books, blogs, and links. Caitlin, I think the most important book you could read this summer is one that I read as I reentered the classroom after staying home for fourteen years, In the Middle by Nancie Atwell.
|In the Middle by Nancie Attwell|
There's a third edition available now. I had the first edition which I replaced in 2002 when I found this used "like new" second edition at Powell's Books while my kids were attending a Dave Matthews concert. (Yes, I'm a book nerd who writes the date and where I purchase a book inside the front cover).
And I must include three other titles from my bookcase of professional books that I've loved and used frequently. It's totally impossible for me to stop with one recommendation!
And now, I'd like to introduce you to the world of teachers who blog. It's an incredible way to grow your own PD (professional development). My involvement with teachers who write began at Two Writing Teachers, and there's no better place to learn than from fellow educators. Don't miss the detailed "Looking For Something?" categories at the bottom of the blog that allow you to search their extensive archives by topic.
A few summers ago I joined some of my blogging friends in a summer book club group to read and discuss Linda Reif's book, Read Write Teach. Involvement in this group kept me reading this significant book throughout the summer. This leads me to another important opportunity that begins soon, It's a cyber book club for teachers. You can read more about it at Cathy Mere's blog, Reflect and Refine. This summer we're reading DIY Literacy by Katie Roberts and Maggie Beattie Roberts.
It's a slim book, just over 100 pages. You still have time to purchase the book and get started before the first discussion begins in July.
I'll wind up this discussion of teachers who blog with an invitation to visit the sites of two of my favorite teacher bloggers, Tara Smith who blogs at A Teaching Life and Ruth Ayres who blogs at Ruth Ayres Writes.
And now, Caitlin, it's on to the final category of things I want to share, websites and/or links that I enjoy and hope you'll visit. (If you think I'm sending you too much, be glad you weren't in the recent graduate class where I shared a dozen favorite blogs and a dozen interesting links.) You may already know about these from your coursework that is preparing you to teach and write in our digital world. But just in case, you don't know them, here are my top four interesting educational links/sites that I hope you'll explore.
Caitlin, I hope this gives you some entry points for your summer preparation. It was a pleasure to meet you, and I wish you a wonderful intern year.