This Adventure

October 13, 2008

I remember the first time the understanding of reading like a writer really sunk in.  I was at a beginning Writer’s Workshop  seminar as a support with my team from school and had just been appointed the Writing Coach position that spring.  Oh, yes, I enjoyed writing and the workshop philosophy that so supported the struggling special ed students I had been working with.  But, when the workshop trainers began to share books and state what skill each might be used for, I was awestruck.  I remember thinking, “How do they do that?  How do they know so many books?”

Well from that time six years ago, I took Katie Wood Ray’s advice in her book, Wondrous Words, and began reading books.  I would go to the library and sit, pulling book after book after book, reading.  The words flowed and swirled around me like a sweet aroma, savoring the love of the story.  That summer, my understanding of reading like a writer grew, until presently, I can’t read a book without noticing the craft placed within.

I’m on a new adventure.  My insightful and supporting friend, Ruth Ayres, challenged me to move from my comfort zone at PES to a broader range through blogging.  “This will help your writing,” she says.  And since I trust my friend and want to grow as a writer myself, I am taking the leap.  From To Understand by Ellin Oliver Keene, my title emerged. 

We struggle for insight; we savor and learn from the struggle itself; we venture into new learning territory and fight the debilitating influence of judgment. (p.102)”

 My goal is to share favorite books that I use for Writer’s Workshop.  The books may be used for mini-lessons in a whole group setting or for conferencing.  I do not claim to be the guru of books, but I love sharing my insights and connecting classrooms with great reads.  Connecting teachers to books for lessons and background knowledge in content areas brings joy to my life.  May you find a book to savor, use, and cherish.