SOL16: When They’re Ready, Writers Bloom

I didn’t see it. I drove by daily and hadn’t noticed. But Sunday, there it was. A single plant amongst the weeds: tall purple spires of the Pride of Madiera. They blossom this time of year. And it always surprises me. I forget they’re there. Waiting for the right time and just enough water. Every year they come out to claim the hillsides, and a sad looking field of weeds transforms.  Color. 

It happens in the classroom this time of year. Amongst the weeds of fifth-grade drama, some writers show up. Stories and poems filled with voice.

Last week, we started working on a classroom poetry anthology. We dabbled in a bit of narrative writing too. The notebooks house their poems. Google docs hold their stories.

Lunch time rolled around yesterday, and kids come to talk, to eat and talk, to eat and talk and write. Usually, their writing is digital. But today they noticed the poems I’d put on the wall.

“Someday I’m going to do this,” T said, and she pointed at a concrete poem.

I thought she meant the form.
But that wasn’t it.
She wanted to put a poem on the wall.

I told her, go ahead. Claim a space.

Next thing I know, color.

Just yesterday, there was nothing there.
Now poems decorate the door.

It happens this time of year. Every year it surprises me. I forget they’re there. Waiting. When they’re ready, writers bloom.

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Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for Slice of Life Tuesdays. Read more slices here.

9 thoughts on “SOL16: When They’re Ready, Writers Bloom

  1. This post made my heart sing! I love the idea of your students decorating the classroom walls with poetry and enjoyed the variety of poems as well. Beautiful! Thanks so much for sharing–I’m already considering how I might do this in my classroom…

  2. Oh the yearning in the words, “Someday I’m going to do this.” And the POWER in your reply, in your permission, “I told her, go ahead. Claim a space.” Claim a space. Claim it. Oh these words are now INSIDE my head. Going to claim my space!

  3. The title of your post says it all! Such important words to remember as we get ready to complete another school year. My favorite is the first poem. Although it makes me wonder why the author is sad, it’s great to know they are looking for the rainbow.

  4. How wonderful to imagine those “flowers” blooming on your door, Juieanne! I love the way you brought us from your own blooms at home to those you nurture at school. “When they’re ready, writers bloom.”

  5. You are the teacher in Dot when Vashti is told she is an artist because her teacher put her drawing on the wall. You told your students they are writers. They are discovering the fun and power of poetry.

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