Skip to main content

Sitting in My Usual Spot

I am sitting in my usual spot.
At least it has been my usual spot for about a week now.
It has become my work space.
It's where I sit to participate in online summer PD activities.
It's where I read.
It's where I write.

My usual spot is in a corner of the couch.
The arm rest is unusually wide.
I can pile my books, notebooks and even my laptop there.
And, I do.

I used to have a more conventional work space,
but then my husband, who works from home,
and was struggling to stick to his side of the desk,
finally spread out,
invading my work space.

One day, after many attempts at getting organized,
and not succeeding,
he told me that he was going to add an extension to our house,
so I could have my own work space.
I told him it was cheaper to tidy up.
That was months ago.

Before claiming my usual spot,
I set up a temporary, wobbly table against a wall in my bedroom
for a work space.
I used that for a few months.
Not ideal, but better than nothing.

I've reclaimed my conventional work space this week.
I cajoled and threatened,
until finally my husband took everything off the table,
stuffed it somewhere or filled up the trash can with it.
It doesn't really matter,
but now I have my work space back.

But, I'm in my usual spot tonight.
And, instead of taking 100 steps in any direction,
stopping and jotting down what I hear, see
and anything else that comes to my mind (the Teachers Write assignment for today),
I am sitting in my corner of the couch.

I am writing.
Because I am trying to take risks.
That's what I pledged to do yesterday.
Instead of worrying about not following the assignment as described,
I decided to take a leap.
Do something different.
Instead of making excuses,
that lead to not writing,
to not taking risks.

So here I am.

It was relatively quiet a few moments ago.
Now, my husband has turned on the TV to watch a local soccer match.
This is a treat, though you may not know this.
We've been without a television for about a year.
Until just a couple of weeks ago.
Really, we didn't miss much.
Except the soccer matches and the occasional Netflix movie.

I hear the sports commentator on the television.
I don't know what he's saying,
nor do I care.

Someone has turned on a set of lights,
directed at my husband's and my shared workspace.
It shines far away from me,
where I am sitting,
in my usual spot.

The curtains are drawn,
but I can see outside the window as the night
curtain starts to go down.
A large cloud blankets the still, blue sky.
There is a smattering of lights.
Across the ravine,
I watch the city light up.

The wind has died down, though it was loud and strong an hour ago.

My son has turned on the lights in the dining room.
I can't see him from where I'm positioned,
but I bet he's sitting on a stool, at the kitchen counter,
with his iPad or a book or a drawing notebook, nearby.

And, it's just another summer evening.

It doesn't matter whether I take 100 steps,
or just sit in my usual spot.

I observe.
I notice.
I write.

Crossposted to Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Tuesday.

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Mini Lessons

Sometimes, I plan too many teaching points for one lesson. For example, instead of focusing on one strategy that students need in order to become more proficient readers and writers, I try to teach several strategies at the same time. 

Sometimes, I stretch out a teaching point beyond the 10- or 12-minute time limit I've given myself because I worry that my mini lesson wasn't enough or my students won't have understood what I intended to teach. So, sometimes, I beat the lesson to a pulp one too many times, or forget to have the kids practice the lesson before they go off to read or write. (Asking students to practice a lesson after you teach it, with you right there to observe and help guide students through the process, is very effective. Try not to skip this step!)  

Here's an example of a mini lesson that lasted less than 10 minutes and resulted in better learning.

My students are in the second round of historical fiction book clubs. In a couple of weeks, we will start …

A Confession

I have a confession to make.

I want to write a book. 
A professional book. 
I think I have a lot to say. 
I think others could benefit from my experience.
After all, I have been an educator for over 30 years.

But, what could I possibly say that hasn't been said before?
What new knowledge could I add to the table?
Who would even bother to read what I have to say?

These are questions borne of fear.
Fear of not being good enough.
Fear of not being able to complete such a daunting project. 
(At least, that's what it feels like to me right now.)
Fear that I won't make time.
Fear that I'll run out of time.

But, over the last couple of days, I've gotten some encouraging words of support from the Innovative Teaching Academy - 
#ITA17 Facebook group. 

You can do it!Write for yourself.
But the message that is propelling me forward is this one: 
It doesn't matter how many times something has been said...each time someone else says it, new people hear it...and that's where you make the d…


Today's post is short and sweet because I just got back from a night of playing Bunko with friends. 

I share some questions I'm grappling with in my classroom. 

No answers. 

Just questions.

(1) What purpose do math stations serve in my classroom?

(2) How can I continue to engage writers without overwhelming them or me?

(3) How can I determine if my tangled readers are learning to be better readers from the books they choose to read?

(4) How can I strike a balance between student choice and making sure my students learn what they need to learn at any given time?

(5) Am I demanding too much from my students?

As I find responses and solutions to these issues, I will post some ideas on my blog.

Any thoughts are more than welcomed!