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a quote from my favorite author

“The most solid advice, though, for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep, really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive, with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell, and when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

-William Saroyan, The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze

Saturday, April 14, 2012

REDESIGN


During spring break I took some time to redesign my blog (I finally figured out how to make my own background).  Ruth and Stacey chose a new look for their Two Writing Teachers blog and I liked the idea of freshening things up. 

I even got my husband involved in a redesign idea for the workspace in which I create my blog.  I had these photo clips from 7gypsies for which I wanted to find a use, he had some scrap wood in the garage, we had chicken wire leftover from a rustic furniture project a few years ago, and I had some desk clutter that needed to be dealt with.  So, I came up with this bulletin board idea and my husband ran with it.  


One of the things I appreciate most about my job as a teacher is the opportunity I get to reflect, refresh, and redesign like this.  I know that many people outside the world of education believe that we teachers take paid vacations and escape to the tropics to enjoy the breaks that they believe motivated us to become teachers in the first place.  But they have no idea. 

During spring break, I haven’t only been redesigning my home and virtual workspaces.  I have been redesigning my approach to teaching and assessment for the last few months of the school year.  I have been reading articles, rereading professional books, following link after link in my twitter feed, all to rediscover my passion for teaching, my beliefs about instruction and assessment, and my self-worth as an educator. 

Monday I will return to the classroom with the feeling of complete and utter failure behind me.  I will forge ahead with a solid plan to engage and challenge my students, with several back-up plans on deck…just in case my students have other agendas for our time together.  And I will do it all because I was allowed to take a week “off.” 

7 comments:

  1. Hi Christy, I love your new look, the background, but especially those typewiters, very cool. And I think the bulletin board idea is terrific, with those little clips. Also very nice. Sounds like your new teachereze is going well, too. I'm so glad you had a nice spring break. What, no tan, no basket of seashells? But clean & clear brain is more important! See you on the blog!

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  2. Fresh and full of energy - that's the way to go. The header with the typewriters is so like you. A perfect choice. And I like that the circles on the background have different sizes. Your fourth paragraph about redesigning your teaching and restoring your self-worth as an educator gave me hope that may-be my spring break will help me find some solutions too.

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  3. Christy, Love the new look. Fresh and Breezy. I also like hearing your voice and your fresh attitude going back for the final countdown. Spring break is good for that. Almost like a mini new year!

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  4. Procrastinating on slicing today, so thought I'd visit. ;) (Yes, I know there's no link today, but I didn't write last week--I'm "behind"!) LOVE the new look! Very modern and chic. Can't wait to hear about your new approaches to assessment and teaching. I'm trying some new stuff post-break, too. Feels good. :)

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  5. I agree with everyone above. I'm really motivated now to change my work spaces. Ruth recommended a blog on one of her posts about the fifties trailer a writer uses to get away to write, and the seed started there for me and now you've actually done it, too. Congratulations and wonderful that your husband got involved. Love those colors, the font, and the quote. I copied it down in my list of quotes. A week of healing and renewal, even without the seashells, is what every teacher needs. Middle schoolers will give you that run for your money every day, but don't be fooled. You are making a difference is some kid's life even if you don't see/hear it. I was thinking of plants and a teacher's influence when I wrote "Any Seed." Thanks for reading my blog even though it's not posted. Hope you had a good week this week.

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  6. Love the new look, really hoping to learn how to do this myself soon! I love your enthusiasm and that you are prepared should your students have an agenda that deviates from your own. Awesome!

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