Tuesday, December 20, 2011

SIlly Snippet Slices

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Ok. So this last week has been crazy busy.  You all know what I mean.  The end of the semester craziness of:

  • semester projects (and getting them graded), 
  • tests (and getting them graded), 
  • portfolios (and getting them graded). 
So, frankly, I haven't written since last week. Nope. Haven't even thought about it.  Because on top of all the " of the semester, gotta cram it all in craziness", there's also the "Christmas is coming chaos".  You know:
  • finding the perfect gift (and wrapping it), 
  • baking the cookies (and frosting them),  
  • Christmas cards (scratch that--maybe next year).
So not one word has escaped from my pen.  However, that does not mean I haven't thought about writing.  Here's the list of never written blog posts:
I even took pictures of my notebook!
  • I started a new writer's notebook.  This makes me inexplicably giddy.  It will have a decent start when my new writing classes start in January. I can't wait to show them how I use it.  This notebook is so different from my old (but never forgotten) notebook.  I bet it will fill up faster too. (On a side note--I found graph paper sticky notes while shopping last weekend.  Those excited me also--I love writing notes on graph paper)
  • I'm frustrated with my English 9 class.  New textbook that I don't feel comfortable with is the main cause. It got better as the semester wore on.  I hope to have some time to prepare more over break.  I also feel like my freshmen are really immature--not just socially, but in their reading and writing abilities.  Need to fix that!
  • I'm thinking of tinkering with Creative Writing again.  Sharing is still an issue, but I noticed that my students broke themselves into groups naturally and shared through that.  Ruth's post on crit groups  has me thinking.  It's a much more comfortable way for students to share.  
  • I revisited my New School Year Resolutions.  Checked off The Book Whisperer. She and I really do think alike. I have created a new web site for English 9 (oh, did I mention in the craziness I took an online class on Google Apps?).  It's finished for class, but I will definitely be working on improving it for the kids.
  • A student THANKED me for being tough on him.  And trust me, that is a story in itself.
  • I continue reciting my quotes when things get rough: Attributed to Buddha, the first is Life is so very difficult. How can we be anything but kind? The other quote that I used as a mantra last summer and will continue to use throughout the year, You must be the change you want to see in the world. Mahatma Ghandi. 
Whew!  I really can't go a week without writing again!  There's more, but I really have to stop and get ready for school.  Semester tests start today!  Yippee!  


  1. First of all, not one of these is silly. I admire you so much for doing all this, PLUS writing your post AND still being in school. I think I thought everyone was finished for their break last Friday. Your notebook looks great & should be a boost for the students, and your web site is terrific. I like the book links & the quote & the poll (although I couldn't see it). Good luck with English 9. And I have used your first quote several times for others at school-it certainly speaks to me, so thanks Deb. Best wishes for a marvelous vacation!

  2. You captured your thoughts in a such a conversational, pleasant way. I felt like I was having coffee with you, reflecting. Love the new notebook - giddy. I liked your style of using the asides in parentheses. MHG

  3. This isn't a slice; it's a whole orange.
    Merry Christmas!

  4. Thanks for sharing that peek into your notebook. It's always neat to see how other writers gather and collect their thoughts.
    I look forward to hearing the story about the student who thanked you for being tough on him. Perhaps you'll share it in the new year.
    Have a wonderful Christmas and a happy new year!

  5. Imagine me giving a little jump and a clap and saying, "Thanks for sharing the inside of your notebook!" I love seeing inside notebooks.

    Cool craft move with those lists + parentheses. I want to try that too.

    I'm glad you wrote today, in the midst of the chaos.


  6. Also I checked out your website...a cool start. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Ooh! I am interested in learning more about your "writer's notebook" and how you will use it with your students!

  8. Deb you need to take the silly out of the title. These are great glimpses into a very full life. You've given just enough information to leave us wanting more and wondering how you do it all. I hope you have time to breathe and enjoy during the break. Have a merry one!

  9. I love my writer's notebook I had for a class I took last winter. It became so authentic! I love going back now and looking at the pictures, pieces of paper and other things I hid inside of it. Sadly, I haven't kept up with it, but thought my blog could serve as a good place for that too. Just not as authentic...Merry Christmas!

  10. #1. None are silly. #2. Your writing echoes my brain. I running ticker of things to do. #3. I want to hear the story about the student! #4. Merry Christmas.

  11. Thanks for sharing your list of craziness with us! We're glad you still made the time to slice. I would love to hear the story of the student who thanked you for being tough -- be sure to post that one! I still have school through tomorrow so I definitely relate to a lot of the items on your list!

  12. Thanks all, for your comments. I think when I titled this, I imagined the post something different. But you know how writing goes....

    I'd still like to write about some of these. maybe during break! We are in school through Thursday, so don't expect to see anything until then.

    Pink Scribbles--you are more than welcome to come and visit my room while you are home on break. You won't see a "master teacher" sharing their notebook and all their wisdom, though. Instead, you will see a writer learning about her tools and experimenting with them! Let me know if you want to come! Anytime is fine with me.

  13. You have a way of making me know myself better through your words. How do you do that?

  14. You certainly think and agonize like a writer. If life were easier, would we write more or less? I seem to go into myself when things get tough and come out writing more. Have a great vacation!

  15. Well, you've had your hands full...but you've managed to hang on to your spirit of optimism and enthusiasm. This time of year just leaves you frazzled - that's certainly the way I feel now.

  16. Deb, I just tried to comment on the post about the student (with the e-mail) but it wouldn't come up. It's a marvelous story, & good, good, good for you for sticking to the rules. If you had made him the exception, it would have told him he wasn't good enough to meet the expectations. I would say from the e-mail, lesson learned!

  17. It is interesting how your thinking of possible slices and reasons why you haven't had time to write makes a perfect personal slice.
    I also read your post (via google reader) about the student. Not lowering the standards pushed him forward more than he believed he was capable of. It matters that he understood it and wrote to you.
    Friday is almost here. Have a peaceful holiday season. With lots of writing.

  18. Linda--hadn't met to post the story about the student yet. I accidentally hit post! I wasn't quite finished with it yet! But, yes, I stuck to my guns and he rewarded me for it.

  19. I think your slice is full of story starters - you're going to have to finish them all for us.