giving and receiving

“Teachers who publish letters to editors, write curriculum guides, compose articles, or even write books, experience untold energy.” Donald Graves, The Energy to Teach 2001

I’m always on the look out for energy – energy giving experiences, or simply energy givers.

Heading into the challenge this year, I wasn’t fully aware of the energy factor. In fact, I think I had conversations in the building that pointed to the fact that I did not have the focus or energy to be taking this on (blame The Covid, right?). But, when work with two fellow slicers (and three more in district, there’s a healthy pressure that brings you to toe the line and then just go.

Then the energy came.

It came to me as a reader.

Energy came in the form of feedback. It came in the form of a poem tweeted – thanks Kevin Hodgson!

Energy came from the Buckeye Brownie recipe compliments of first year slicer Jill Miller Lists Are Important. Every day started with a win compliments of first year slicer Cindy, a nurse in Illinois! Every post was a highlight of a “win” for the day. Even on the hard days, Cindy managed to not only find, but slice about the “win”. A Day at the Park, she captured the simple “win” of catching her granddaughter at the bottom of the slide.

Energy came from beginning to know the stories that live in this world. Stories from people, some of whom I’ve never met, but have come to care about.

Energy came from learning the stories that live within my colleagues and friends. Energy came in the form of hallway conversations with Peter and Jess. Energy came in the form of finding connections with colleagues in other buildings.

It came to me as a writer.

Energy came from throwing down the words, rereading them, deleting, crafting, molding my own thoughts my own stories so I could put them out into the world.

I’d love to say the energy was constant and that it fueled my writing every day. But we all know that would be a lie. There was an ebb and a flow to the energy. Like the tides, on the days that it was low, I knew if I read and wrote, the energy would rise again.

Thank you to Stacey, and Melanie, Kathleen, Betsy, Beth, Amy, and Therapi for creating and maintaining a space for an energy giving experience.

And finally, thank you all. Thank you for being the energy givers that you are. You exude possibility.

8 thoughts on “giving and receiving”

  1. A sweet ending, giving a nod to all those that have you energy this month. I loved the ending, possibility. Cheers to another year in the books (on the blog?!?). So grateful for your energy in so many areas of my life.


  2. Love your nod to other slicers. I did feel the energy the daily writing and reading gave us. Perhaps our collective spirits drive us forward. They say there is strength in numbers.


  3. This is perfect! Your lead – I am always on the lookout for energy – really made me pause and think how this challenge did just that for me as well. Reading the connections, comments, and stories of teachers I don’t even know (but feel like I do somehow) was so uplifting.


  4. I love the way you share these details to show us exactly where you find all of your energy. I’m glad you are filled with energy, because you are always pouring so much of that energy into the rest of us. Your comments always energized me and pushed me forward. Thank you. These are the conditions I hope we can create for our student writers as well. A space where they feel the kind of energy you are experiencing here. Congratulations on another amazing month of writing together.


  5. I talked in my class yesterday about what Red meant when he said most trees are introverts, and I tried to explain how extroverts get energy from interactions. I used you as an example, and they got it. You are an energy transferer (not a word, apparently, but a thing). You find people or ideas that give you energy, and then you pass it on to others. That’s a gift to the world. Thank you.


  6. Yes! It is about energy and I haven’t thought of it that way. I do believe I can do this because I feed off the three of you and those in my building, but in addition have been energized by others I don’t know well, yet feel I do. I love the win if the day idea- keeping that in my pocket. It’s been a great month!


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