One Little Word Check-In

The end of the school year always brings with it  a great opportunity for reflection. Often I find myself beginning to think about the year to come sometime in March. I start thinking about what I can do before the group of students I have leave the nest. I wonder what new opportunities I might try with the next crew.

My One Little Word (OLW) for 2016 is Possible. Last year, my word was Open. I remember thinking about how perfect the word had become at about this time of year back then because I was facing a change in grade-levels and there were a lot of unknowns. I’m finding myself in that same situation again this year. What will I teach when fall comes around? No one really knows quite yet. There is a lot of shifting and maneuvering of staff and I’m not exactly sure anyone will know where I land until a month from now. Until then I am optimistic and hopeful that I get the opportunity to work with third graders again in the 2016-17 school year. I have seen so many possibilities with this age group. There are so many things I didn’t know until now and I’d love to try again and do it better.

I’ve watched students who came to me with what felt like impossible situations in their way toward progress gleam past that struggle and show their voice in their writing. It has been wonderful reuniting with students I had back in kindergarten and first-grade to see their writing rise. Children who once wrote only a few lines now write paragraphs with dialogue, meaning, and figurative language. I remember looking at the end of year third-grade writing samples and wondering how on earth we would get to that point! Many have gotten there and several are well on their way with teams of growth from the months we have spent together.

As I finish out the year in the next two weeks I’m looking forward to wrapping up these experiences in hopes I can tuck them away for just the summer and unpack them when fall begins. The possibility exists but I will remain open as well as I venture into what feels like an unknown.