SOL #17 – Sophie’s Mom

“I’m scared…Today could be the day…”11454297503_e27946e4ff_h

Silence.  He was checking his blog.  “Nope.”

“Today’s not the day?”  another student sympathized.

“Nope.  Maybe tomorrow,”  Julian responded.

At this point we all know exactly what he is referring to – Sophie’s Mom.

My students have been blogging all month as part of the Two Writing Teachers Classroom Slice of Life.  Recently, Stacey Shubitz commented on some of my students’ blog posts.  (Thank you Stacey!)  When she comments, a tiny picture of her is also visible next to the comment.  Julian at Amazing15 saw a comment from her on a classmate’s blog and automatically turned to Sophie, a classmate.  “Is this your mom?  Are you sure?”  She assured him it was not her mother, but couldn’t deny the resemblance.

Although he knows Stacey Shubitz is from Two Writing Teachers and is not Sophie’s mom, he still looked each day this week for a comment from “Sophie’s Mom.”  Today his post is about this very wish.  You can read it and leave him a comment here.  He is a dedicated writer and has sliced every day of March so far!

Stacey – If you are reading this, it would make Julian’s day/week/school year if he were to receive a comment from Sophie’s famous mom!

Screen Shot 2017-03-17 at 5.17.53 PM

SOL #13 – “It didn’t go as planned.”

The mid-month slump is here and I’m out of ideas.   It always seems to happen around this time and results in procrastination.  Lots of procrastination.  Dinner.  Dishes.  Netflix.  I started reading and commenting on student blogs.

One of my talented writers wrote a post about wet grass.  In it she wrote, “It didn’t go as planned.”  And that got me thinking…so many things have not gone as planned. In my life.  In each day of teaching.

Now I have a list of slices.  Being a teen mom.  The discussion on women’s rights on Friday.   A read aloud.  Losing at Monopoly. So, today’s slice is about not having ideas and finding inspiration in my student.  But, I also have a list of other ideas in my notebook ready for the upcoming week.





SOL #4 – #proudteacher

I had a different plan.Screen Shot 2017-03-04 at 8.51.34 PM.png

I had written a throwback slice

in my notebook earlier in the day.

I opened my computer

to the ding of emails.

But not just any emails!

Emails that tell me my students are slicing

and leaving their permalinks

on our class blog!

On the weekend!

#proudteacher  #timetoreadandcomment

5B Blogs!


“A Wormy Day”

“Miss Bless!  Miss Bless!  There are worms all over outside!”

This is how the students entered the school today.  It rained this morning and the worms were out!

As the students stood in line to move their magnet to their lunch choice, they continued to share the worm news with me.

“MD touched a worm!  He was holding it in his hand!”

“I did.  Right here!”  MD responded, pointing to his hand.

“MD,  you know what that means?”  I asked.  “It means you are going to start turning into a worm.”

He laughed, used to my joking.  “That would be awesome!”

Then, as he was trying to pick up his magnet, it kept getting stuck to the other ones and he couldn’t get a grip on it.

“See MD!”  I pointed to the magnet.  “It’s already happening!  You are turning into a worm!”

Again, he laughed, ordered his lunch, and began to walk away.  Suddenly, he turned and said, “Hey!  That’s my slice of life for today.”


One of the great things about this Slice of Life Challenge is that the students are noticing these tiny moments.  Moments that wouldn’t have become cemented in writing before, are now being shared with the world.

Screen Shot 2016-03-14 at 8.06.51 PM

Writing is…

Image 3-9-16 at 7.58 PM
We are participating in the Classroom SOL.  This is a post by one of my students.  Although I didn’t publish it in order to protect the privacy of another student and his family, I am happy that he was able to put this experience into words.

Writing is healing.

It is a way to process thoughts and emotions.

For adults.

For children.


This challenge has allowed my students

To build writing stamina.

To share moments of their day.

To process their reactions to these moments.

To be heard.


This challenge has allowed me

To hear their thoughts.

To see what they find is important.

To learn more each of them.

To listen.


Writing is healing.

It is a way to process thoughts and emotions.

For adults.

For children.

Image 3-9-16 at 8.09 PM
Different student.  Expressing the power of writing in a few words.



“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.”

― Marianne Williamson

Life can be overwhelming.  It is easy to forget that there is so much to be thankful for and so much that brings joy.  I try to take time each week to write down things that bring me joy in my writer’s notebook.

When I am having a rough day, it helps to stop and write down the positives.

When I am having a great day, it can only get better to put the joy into words in my notebook.  (Or on my blog!)

A kid created his own text set to check out from our classroom library!   #nerdyteacherjoy
The weather on Friday was beautiful!  We went outside for writing workshop AND I wore flip flops!
Screen Shot 2016-02-20 at 5.26.40 PM.png
I love teaching writing and the kids are loving blogging!  We are getting ready for the March Slice of Life Classroom Challenge!
My kid is a picky eater, so this was a huge compliment coming from him!


The Island
I love this quote!  I listened to this book earlier in the week and the line stuck with me.  I can be my own happy ending!



When the students teach each other…

When the students teach each other…giving each other strategies, some that we taught and some that they learned themselves…those are the moments that make me feel like I am getting through.  After days yesterday, I need to focus on those moments.

After making it though more half the month of blogging, we have four students that have blogged everyday and many more that have blogged for the majority of the days.  There is so much growth in each student that has been blogging regularly and the other day I overheard one student coaching another.

“You have to check your post in preview now. Just to make sure the picture doesn’t cover up any of your words…that is really important.”

Such a small moment and yet it was a completely unprovoked moment.  It made me feel like I am not just shoving information and strategies down their little throats, maybe I am facilitating and they are learning!


Sunday Letters 2.15.15

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.02.01 PM

Dear Students,20150205_153715

I am so proud of your blogging and I can’t wait until the March SOL Classroom Challenge!  You have grown so much in your writing and every thing else this year.  You are amazing, spunky, special kids and I am so grateful to be your teacher!


Your Proud Teacher

P.S. I’m also very grateful that you don’t eat pencils like this one that I found in a Kindergarten room.

PicMonkey CollageDear Self,

You totally deserve the gifts you bought yourself for Valentine’s Day!

Me  🙂


Dear Amanda and Liz,

I absolutely love being your mentor!  You both are very talented and dedicated teachers and I am learning so much from you.  I know that this has been a hard year, but just think of how far you have come already.  You are making a difference in young lives every day.

With pride,

Your Mentor


Dear Gilmore Girls,

Thank you so much for existing.  (And thank you Netflix for making binge watching possible!) You were the perfect way to spend Valentine’s Day night as a single introvert.  🙂  If only real people had conversations like Lorelai and Rory.

I just found out, through Pinterest, that Stars Hallow is a real place called Washington Depot or something.  I really want to take a road trip now!


A Devoted Fan

Classroom SOL Challenge…We’re ready!

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.12.13 PMOur class is blogging and I must say they are pretty fantastic!  This fall we asked the students to put their weekly letters to us about a book on Kidblog.  Then, right before winter break we introduced blogging and edublogs.  This way the kids get more choice:  theme, formatting, and blog name.   One week before winter break and these last two weeks…the kids are ready for March’s Slice of Life!

Screenshot_2015-02-14-19-31-05In preparation for our March Challenge our Literacy Coach created a fabulous bulletin board to track student blogging and we included information in our biweekly parent newsletter.

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.35.48 PM

We taught the kids different topics they could write about, including a slice of life.  We also stuck in several mini-lessons on run-on sentences and possessive vs. plural.  After talking about what a “Slice of Life” means, we gave the kids notebooks to jot down ideas throughout the day.  Our young writers were totally motivated and even took them with to P.E. that morning!

20150213_115828Here are a few links to some great posts by the kids.  Clicking on the picture should bring you to the post…Enjoy!

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.45.04 PM
This one is about the SOL Challenge.
Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.49.41 PM
Fabulous SOL by a very talented young writer!
Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 7.47.15 PM
This SOL makes me question if this whole thing was a good idea…