Celebrate This Week: Small Steps to Build Big

It’s the beginning of the school year, and then all of a sudden, the beginning ends and you start to get worried.

We take small steps toward goals. Sometimes in the wrong direction. We try, self-correct. Then take another step. The pace is slow. You worry. “Will we get there?”

I go through this every year. Every year. I worry for students that need to run not walk, towards learning. They meander and get a little lost.

This week marks the 100th Celebrate This Week link up with Ruth Ayers. Of those 100, I have missed just one. I didn’t start out thinking about a goal. Post number one happened. It was a safe place. I was nurtured and encouraged with gracious comments. Then post number two. And somehow, week after week another small post. Many weeks, I didn’t think I could or would. But somehow I did. And here I am looking back, surprised.

And that’s the thing. What’s possible isn’t apparent at the beginning.  For many, potential is buried and needs to be dug out. Cultivated. That takes patience and time and belief.

This week I conferred. One by one. I started to see a little light.  A pattern of needs. Small groups of students began to align. A few simple teaching points and follow-up conferences happened.

This week, even though the mountain we need to climb is daunting, I keep reminding myself, we can only do it a step at a time.

This week I celebrate small steps toward big goals.

What students say:

“Is there another book in this series? Will you get it?”

“My goal is to read every I Survived book.”

“We’re writing a 200-page picture book. I have a lot of work to do.”

“Where do you get those tiny post-its? They really help me.”

What students do:

Line up to recommend books.

Create waiting lists to get those coveted books.

Leave a notebook with a post-it saying, “Please read this Mrs. Harmatz.”

Write every day in notebooks and on devices. Their stories.

Read every day, books of their choosing.

This week we stepped closer to becoming readers and writers.

This week I celebrate the small that builds to big.

Thank you, Ruth and congratulations on the 100th link up.

Every week celebrating the week builds big. Read more posts here.

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From 365 Days of Wonder