Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Come Home My Beloved Boy (Inspired by Cynthia Lord and Carol Wilcox)

In about thirty hours,
I will have
my sweet boy
in my arms
and smell
his once-boy
and get his whiskered
kiss on my hopeful
In about thirty hours,
our house will feel
like our home
filled with boy
and men
sharing sport stories
with words
which feel like
ancient Hebrew
and modern Chinese
to me.
I love it!
In about thirty hours,
I will bake, bake, bake
cook, cook, cook
and be Julia Child
and June Cleaver
and confidant.
In about thirty hours,
my heart
does not have
to be two
states away.
Our son,
our blessing is
coming home.
Thank God!
LB 11/25/08

Thinking of Tim's homecoming, I was so tickled to read Walter Dean Myer's poem in Hate That Cat by Sharon Creech:

Love that boy
like a rabbit loves to run
I said I love that boy
like a rabbit loves to run
Love to call him in the morning
love to call him
"Hey, there, son!"

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
I wish you the blessing of being with those who bring you joy and peace...and always give you a soft place to land.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Our Youngest Growing Writers and Readers: Professional Texts to Light Our Paths as Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten, and First Grade Teachers

It's exciting time for teachers of Pre-K, K, and first grade students because so many of our most treasured and respected mentors have recently published incredible professional books. Sharing their teaching with us, their words light our paths as we work to strengthen not only students' emerging literacy skills but expand their confidence and purposes for writing and reading.
Here are a few of my favorites (and, knowing that my tired old jet lagged brain is likely to forget a really important title or two, I will keep updating this list for you all in future BLOG entries):
Already Ready: Nurturing Writers in Preschool and Kindergarten by Katie Wood Ray and Mark Glover
Of Primary Importance: What's Essential in Teaching Young Writers by Ann Marie Corgill
Look Whose Learning to Read! by Shelley Harwayne
Talking, Drawing, and Writing: Lessons for Our Youngest Writers by Martha Horn and Mary Ellen Giacobbe
Growing Up Writing: Mini-Lessons for Emergent and Beginning Writers by Connie Campbell Dierking and Sherra Ann Jones
Spaces and Places by Debbie Diller (*creating an inviting and intentional literacy learning environment; I will post a BLOG entry about my own thoughts about the setting of our classrooms soon.)
The Reading Bug by Paul Jennings
Hey, Listen to This! by Jim Trelease
Beyond Bedtime Stories by Susan Bennet-Armistead
Creating Literacy Rich Pre-Schools and Kindergartens by Anne K. Soderman
And a few which were previously published but deserve a second (or third!) read:
No More Letter of the Week by Pat Lusche
Joyful Learning by Bobbi Fisher
About the Authors by Lisa Cleaveland with Katie Wood Ray
Growing Readers by Kathy Collins
The Read Aloud Handbook (6th edition) by Jim Trelease
Developmental Continuums and Classroom Based Assessment by Bonnie Campbell Hill
Words Their Way by Don Bear and his brilliant colleagues :)
Texts by Carol Avery, Gail Saunders Smith, Vivian Paley, and, of course, Margaret Mooney and Marie Clay, too!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

It is Time

My husband, Dave, is a history teacher (and a darn great one, too!). For many years, I have placed my votes, my voice, and my vision toward civil rights for all people of all races, faiths, and sexual orientations. Over nine years ago, I joined a church focused on equality and hope for all people (a passion and effort of the church for over 200 years). Until recently, I worked for an organization devoted to the academic achievement of African American students. I am a mother of a nineteen year old son. I am self employed and incur tremendous and sometimes daunting taxes.
For these reasons and a million more, today is a day of reflection and promise. It is election day. I am hoping with all my soul that the next president brings compassion, wisdom, and integrity to his work. He needs to build bridges between and among all people. He needs to listen to those he knows and respects and those who question his decisions, too.
Senator Obama, I am voting for you for all our children. You carry our precious trust and faith. God speed, brave brother.