Wednesday, October 3, 2012

What Keeps Me Going

An extra hour in the day.  That's sometimes all I wish for...  An extra hour to spend in deep discussion about that tricky fraction concept...  An extra hour for readers to build and connect their reading in their reader's notebooks...  An extra hour to experiment and question...  An extra hour to grapple with mentor texts to find that perfect opening sentence... An extra hour of sleep... An extra hour to clean off the piles on my desk that have been collecting since August... An extra hour to reflect.

A new school, new faces, new adjustments... just one extra hour.  As the end of first quarter approaches, I find myself overwhelmed with what we have yet to accomplish.  I find myself arriving at home later and later, and waking up earlier each morning.  I find myself squeezing things in, penciling arrows in my plan book over to the next day, and leaving our read aloud story unopened for "just one more day."  As I sit here overwhelmed, I have to stop and reflect on where we started that day in the middle of August. 

New friendships have been made.  A new teacher, new students, new relationships have formed.  We know who to turn to if we need a friend to make us laugh, we know who to count on if we need a listening ear.  We recognize the power of those willing to voice their opinions and we recognize the power of those who are observant.  We know who would like to read that new book about reptiles that just entered our library and who we should go to if we need help adding description to our writing.  We have learned to think about numbers in a new way... and that the floating one above the division bar isn't really a one at all.  We know the power of our science notebooks and how to collaborate digitally in the classroom.. and although it may not be visible to the naked eye with the piles on my desk and the arrows in the plan book, the foundation is slowly building.

As I find myself searching desperately for that extra hour, I realize again how important it is to slow down in the twenty four that we are given.  That rejuvenation can come from a quiet moment when you force yourself  to put off grading that stack of papers to add something to a blog you haven't touched in a month and a half...   to search deep in your heart and reflect on what you believe in... and to believe that it is right. To me, that's an hour well spent.  

So this is my promise to myself... to reflect a little more, be content with the yet to be accomplished, and to move forward with what I believe in.  To value the twenty four hours in the day and to slow down to make the most of what I have been given.  And to more importantly realize, that everything must start with a strong foundation.  

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