Week 2 of the SI always feels different to me from week 1. There’s a routine that starts to feel comfortable. We have early morning rituals that move smoothly. We write together and more people share something. Some of our prompts have invited everyone to share something. Our prompt to a photo on Wednesday, where everyone brought a photo that mattered to them and then that photo, as part of the SI collection was selected by someone in the group to write a fiction piece. Everyone shared, Christine uploaded them to the blog and everyone added their piece of writing. Powerful, don’t you think? Writing to Photos
Camile and Andrea shared their reflections from their rich TIW’s from yesterday. Camile smoothly moved us through a very layered workshop based on her years of experience with ELL students who have great difficulty writing in a second language and Andrea, who is always pushing herself to consider something brand new in the area of multimodal work. I was engaged! We had photos from Heather and we were off with Jackie to think about how to include more student voices in classroom discussions. As much as I love Socratic Seminar, I love the revision that Jackie has added to build some in structure into the free-flowing conversation of SS. I wish I had a group of kid guinea pigs to experiment with.
Even though, as the SI visited the library with Mary on that hot Tuesday afternoon and Christine and I got more comfortable with Google’s We Video, we were invited the group to join on the adventure the ride was rocky and demanding patience from all of us. Some were flexible, some were lost, some, who had Macs, opted out for their iMovie software. I think that would have been my choice. But it’s always a crazy time for me to move to computer screens that don’t resemble mine. I suffer a bit of brain freeze and I am not smooth of a foreign keyboard, even though they all look the same. And that’s even before I get to the screen. What a challenge! I hope that everyone took something away. I think we have to make more time for tech next week.
Christine and I raced out to meet Trace for lunch to get a sneak peak at her plans for her upcoming Visitors’ Day keynote. I wanted to stay longer, to linger over my salad and her passionate championing for the essential nature of reading pure fiction, but we couldn’t. We were racing…. I was just about certain that I would have to leave early to join Eileen’s family as her stone would be unveiled at that wild cemetery up in the mountains, where members of my family are resting. I had to go and Christine was up to be left with the charge. Rebecca had a Community Reading to lead, and there would be time for the group to understand what they would have to complete for Tuesday and then everyone would be off to write for Thursday with their writing groups. We have time set aside on Monday morning to hear about their writing experiences.
I was off to remember Eileen with an intimate family I know well from her eyes and my infrequent meet ups over their lives. I was so glad to be with them, to be with her and even though it was hot and I spent a lot of time driving, to sleep in my own bed and not have to race anywhere the next morning, thank you, Christine McCartney. I was looking forward to taking a fresh look at our project together and we did, with time in the middle of our work for head to downtown Nyack for a breakfast-lunch at my neighborhood spot, Strawberry Place. Waffles, omelets, great coffee, fresh strawberries. Heaven!
By the time Christine left I had our project back in the front of my head. On my way to join Tuvia for dinner on Thursday I had the title:
Bonnie and Christine’s Most Excellent, Educational, Adventures in Finland: Choice, Continuity, Collaboration and COMMUNITY. I see the C’s jumping out of a suitcase…something on the cool side.
I had it in the my head as I drove on the Garden State Parkway and no, I didn’t text it to Christine until I stopped at the rest stop for gas. Minutes later: “Love it!”
Can’t wait for Monday….