Sunday, March 1, 2020

Day One..... Oh the Anxiety!

Day one... I know I can do this but what a challenge this is!

I woke early this morning eager to begin this journey.  (I stumbled across this challenge when I was researching Lucy Calkins and implementing her unit on responding to reading.  The challenge tugged at my heartstrings, my mind and my determination to become a better writer and teacher of writing.) I poured my morning cup of coffee, added my caramel nut pod creamer and opened my iPad to begin.  There it is the first post, the first inspiration, the first blogs to read.  I read them all, soaked in all the information and then writer's block set in! 

What do I write about?  I could write about the car show that my family is going to in a few hours and has been going to for the last 26 years. (That's a long time right?) I could write about my sick college boy who came home because he still needs his mom (Who doesn't and wow did that feels good!) I could write about my classroom chickens and the joy that it brings all the students. (Chicks are incredibly cute before they come chickens).  There are so many things.....

Then it occurred to me, that this is what my students feel like when they are asked to write an open-ended free write.  The grab your pencil and just write for 10 minutes kind of write.  Stumped.... overwhelmed...anxious.... it was just soooo much.  I froze, I rehearsed in my mind, I brainstormed.  All of the things we ask our kids to do when they write and it was challenging.  So, I went to the posts of others.  I used them as mentor texts and the feelings became worse.  Oh my goodness, these people can write.  Will I be good enough?  I can't write like they can!  So, I took a pause, a breath and second to clear my mind and this post came out.  It is in the clarity of a pause that I realized that the challenges of writing the first post (or any writing) is when the magic happens. The posts do not have to be fancy or awe-inspiring, they just need to be. I just need to put pen to paper or in this case, fingers to keyboard and write.  I need to do what I ask my students to do. I got this!

So, let the challenge begin, I am ready! Day one is done!


  1. Welcome to the #SOL20! Getting started is half the battle and it looks like you have some things you can write about for a few days. (I can hardly wait to read about those classroom chickens!) I think you have hit upon an important point about this challenge: by writing ourselves, we can empathize with out students, become better writing teachers, and better writers as well.

  2. “They just need to be.” YES, I hope that our new Slicers understand that. Not everything has to be perfect or polished this month. (Heck, mine won’t be since I had surgery on Thursday and I’m going to be slicing while on bed rest all month.) We just put ourselves out there, share comment love with others, and somehow it works.
    Glad you’re back from another year.

  3. I meant to say “glad you are here this year.” Sorry about that! (See... even my commenting isn’t perfect! Too bad there’s no edit button on comments.)

  4. Great insight! Enjoy this project :)

  5. I was taken with your honesty. And your enthusiasm will carry you over bumps in the road...
    It was interesting to hear the list of things you could have been writing about. Topics. Possible "pick me" ideas. I like that you went into a reflection of how your students must feel. I also admire your intention to become a better writing teacher by -- writing!


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