Normally, A and I have very enthusiastic “good mornings” to each other. When my “good morning A!!” wasn’t reciprocated, I knew something was up.
I motioned to her to come chat by the classroom stools. “What’s going on?” I asked. She explained to me how she didn’t have a good morning; she missed the communication about there not being a student council meeting this morning before school, and by the time she realized it, mom had already driven off.
I knew how overwhelming this must have felt for A. Without trying to jump in and save her immediately, I asked her what she did when she realized this. She said, “I told Mrs. (student council teacher) and I stayed in her room and colored. We ended up chatting about gymnastics. Did you know Mrs. was a gymnast growing up?”
I can’t explain how huge this was for A. She experienced her worry and handled it so well.
I exhaled as I responded, “No, I didn’t know she was good at gymnastics. But look at you go, turning something that may have seemed scary into a positive. It might even make for a good story, one day.”
Something else you should know about A is that getting started with writing can be a challenge. Once she writes, she really writes. When I went to check-in with her a few minutes after our mini-lesson today, her pencil was moving so quickly. She had a story to tell.
There she went, including the story of her morning as an elaboration technique in her opinion essay. Her opinion: kids should have cell phones. Her first reason: in case of miscommunication.
Look at you go, A.
6 thoughts on “Slice of Life 2020 Day 4: It will make a good story one day…”
Love this so much … if nothing else we are teaching them they can always process, feel, respond and work through their struggles through writing. You crafted this with such voice – I truly felt like I was in the classroom with you. Thank you.
It’s so great to see when they really get going with their writing! Thanks for sharing!
Love this. This is a good illustration of the power of leaning in to our students. Love how this quick conversation empowered her. Thank you for sharing.
I note your mindfulness to “not jump in and save” right away – and oh, the power of suggestion (which sent that pencil to writing) to prevent that problem from happening again. One more proof that students will write plenty when the writing matters to them – and when they realize the power of their own voices. Well done.
You did the amazing thing, helping her notice her own accomplishments. I hope she writes about this. I love when we can talk authentic ideas with students. Lovely slice.
You do such a good job with this student, Allie. I love that she was head down working on her argument. Maybe she’ll end up with a cell phone!