A Little Bit Better

For the past three or four summers, I’ve had the pleasure of getting together with colleagues for our summer writing group, Teachers Who Write.  This summer, respecting “The C,ovid”, as well everyone’s comfort level, we went virtual.  Being that many of my colleagues would be home with their own children, Peter, Jess and I decided to extend the invitation to them as well.

Wren, Adi, Rose, Peter, Willow and Avery sat beside their moms at our first meeting.  Peter, confidently shared after listening to “Big” Peter share.  After hearing “Little” and “Big” Peter share, suddenly, Willow was ready to share.  Hearing the voices of the children added innocent energy to our meeting.  Their bravery was admirable.  I left that first meeting with an unexpected mindset of possibilities for future meetings.

As I pulled up Zoom for our second meeting, I wondered what kids would show up?  I felt a wide smile appear on my face when I saw, Wren, Adi, Willow, Hannah and Avery on my screen.  There they were, notebooks and pens in hand, ready to listen, think and write.

img_7661
Wren’s List
img_7663
Willow’s List

The next 20ish minutes were spent making lists as a warm up followed by independent writing with invitations for all ages.  We ended, as writers do, by sharing. The voices and stories of my colleagues and their kids began to fill me.

Jess M shared how her fence is “patrolled by Tucker”, Denia’s piece was about how she flipped through a book of pictures and she found herself “flipping through time”.  After hearing her Mom share, Willow raised her hand.  Denia read her daughter’s piece (see below).  I watched as Willow listened to her Mom go public with her writing – “we just have a blow up pool but it is still deep enough to keep us cool”.  I saw Wren’s brave hand rise.  She was ready so share (see below).  “My cousin Maverick was here, me and Mav like to play on the trampoline.”  Hannah whispered to Kristen.  She, too, was ready to hear her Peter shared about his garden and the structure that contains the garden. He shared “garden is thriving but the structure is showing its’ age”.  He described some plants as “climbing, competing for the sun.”

I couldn’t help but be in awe to be part of this multiage group of writers.  Here I was, not only learning more about my colleagues through their writing, but also getting to know their kids through their own writing!

With all that is going on in our communities, our country, and our world, I can’t help but  be grounded by the time I get to spend with my colleagues and their kids.  There is power in coming together to write, find stories, pull up memories, harvest ideas, and share.  When people of all ages come together in the name of writing we can’t help but connect and be a little bit better.

img_7662
Willow’s writing inspired by her own list
img_7660
  Wrens’ writing from the Invitation WOTD – Flip

7 thoughts on “A Little Bit Better”

  1. A silver lining. Can’t wait to extend this to our school community. You embrace the “let’s see what happens” and time and time again, we see great things emerge. My kids would write on zoom with you every day if they could. It connects them to other people and who doesn’t need more of that right now?!? ❤️

    Like

  2. When these writing sessions work so well, it always seems easy and natural, even online. Now, the trick for me is getting that to happen naturally with a class of 20…some of whom don’t really want to be there! I love these TWWplusKs meetings. They feel just right for writing. I think it has a lot to do with the way you hang on everyone’s words, jotting notes, responding, and encouraging.

    Like

  3. I love this multiage group of writers. Kids are playful and fearless with their words. You’ve added another positive to this time!

    Like

  4. I love our meetings and love how Willow now refers to you as her summer writing teacher. She now asks me to read to her the Tuesday Slices from her new teacher and ‘summer classmates.’ It has made writing such a natural part of Willow’s everyday life, and I cannot thank you and everyone who comes to our meetings enough.

    Like

  5. This is wonderful – the writing, the togetherness, the surprises. How great that the creative thinking in a novel situation brought young writers into the community.

    Like

  6. This post brought a smile to my face! The bravery of the adults exchanged with the energy of the children. I love that “aha” moment when kids figure out that they can write about anything at all, and it becomes a story to share. Thank you–this gave me a feeling of anticipation for the coming school year, in the midst of all the dread.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s