Celebrating Independent Learning

Every week Ruth Ayers invites bloggers to celebrate their week by focusing on about the big and the small things worth holding up and celebrating. Thank you Ruth for this lovely ritual. Read more celebrations here.celebrate link up Today I’m celebrating independent learning..

One.  My students are still blogging and it’s summer. Technically they are no longer my students, but they are still blogging. One student has started a challenge – a do it yourself challenge a la Genius Hour! This student is putting herself out (a bit of a risk) to her peers with a challenge. No one asked her to. It wasn’t an assignment. She just did it. She is a writer and a creator all on her own and I hope forever.

Second. My own children are learning to handle life on their own. One son had to get through finals, job recertification (he’s a summer lifeguard and has to pass a open water swim test), look for a new house to rent (apparently “no one rents to male students”), and not feel well (probably stress) at the same time. He is dealing with it, without complaint. I worry but I’m proud of his independence.

Third. Teachers are choosing to spend the beginning part of their summer learning. These teachers came and worked all day with energy, learning a challenging but powerful way to teach writing. The extraordinary thing is that these teachers have lots of experience and success in their classrooms, BUT they aren’t satisfied. They have their sights on what is best for their students, and they are looking to raise the level of  instruction with Teachers College Reading Writing Projects’ Units of Study. I am inspired by their dedication to their craft and their students. These independent learners who came wanting more, left excited about what might be for next year, considering how to overcome obstacles and bring home the work to their school sites.

Fourth. The people and resources of TCRWP help us learn and push our teaching to higher levels. . With internet access, the classrooms and teaching of Cornelius Minor, Kate Roberts, and the coaching of Lucy Calkins comes to life for teachers, 3,000 miles away, to observe and learn.

Fifth. My  exceedingly talented colleagues work together to do masterful work teaching other teachers. Today, I celebrate their gifts and the magic that happens when it all comes together.