Celebration Saturday: Notes from the sub, #nErDcampNNE, Donalyn&Colby, MLK

celebrate link up

Celebrate with Ruth Ayres @ ruth ayres writes  …. because, we need to celebrate moments in our lives every chance we get!

(Some of) this week’s celebrations:

1. My students…which teacher would not want to come back to school and find a note from the substitute teacher like this:


It’s been dreadfully cold here in New Jersey, which has had an adverse effect on my fybromyalgia.  By Wednesday, I knew that I would need to take a day to be off my feet and sit tight in a warm room.  So, I let my kids know exactly what was up, and what the learning plan of the day was going to be on Thursday.  On Friday, I found this note on my desk.  When I saw Fran, she told me that the day began with a computer glitch; but while she waited for the tech person, my kids reminded her that they were also supposed to begin preparing for their nonfiction book club meetings on Tuesday, so they would just do that while they waited. Fran was impressed – and I was moved to tears.  Instead of taking advantage of the situation, my kids took advantage of time to keep learning. I celebrate my kids.

2.  This picture from #nErDcampNNE:


My friend Diana Marc-Aurele posted this photograph on Twitter – “authors share their process…so inspiring!”  I’m thinking of all the learning fun going on right now in Maine as this teacher-generated PD goes into full swing. I’m following the Tweets as best I can, and taking notes.  I’m savoring quotes such as this one, from Lynda Mullaly Hunt: “See your kids as children first before you see them as students.” And I am celebrating the fact that in this age of so much negativity directed at teachers and what we are not doing well enough in our classrooms, we go out and create opportunities for ourselves like this. Together with the writers who enrich our work, we say: this is what we are all about…pay attention to what we really do!

3. These pictures Donalyn Miller shared from her day in Colby Sharp’s classroom:

IMG_0528 IMG_0529

So, who wouldn’t want to be a kid or have a kid in this  classroom?!  Colby’s classroom radiates book love and kid love, and all the things Donalyn writes so eloquently about literacy and “wild reading”.  I celebrate classrooms like this – all our children deserve them!

4. This man:


We have Monday off to celebrate the life of Martin Luther King, Jr.  I hope to see “Selma” that day, and try not to think of all the work he began that still remains undone.



14 thoughts on “Celebration Saturday: Notes from the sub, #nErDcampNNE, Donalyn&Colby, MLK

  1. I love how your students made great choices while you were away! I hope you’re feeling better! Take care of yourself & rest this weekend. By the way, I LOVE the idea of seeing Selma on Monday. I’m going to go too! Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. How truly wonderful that your students let their light shine through – they are learners – with you there and without you there. I would be very proud as well! Colby’s classroom does look delightful. I love sneak peeks into other rooms. I love seeing the books, the walls, the engagement with reading and learning!

  3. Tara,
    In my many years of substitute teaching (special needs, hospital school, K-12) I knew that good teachers can make great students. Classrooms that were organized, where students knew the expectations and were allowed to be their best selves were always the easiest to work in. For me it meant these were the most fun classrooms to work in. If you expect the best, you get the best from your students and in my opinion this comes from modeling this kind and thoughtful behavior.
    Obviously, you are a great teacher–your students prove that for you.

  4. Tara, there are so many celebrations that go unnoticed in the daily life of a teacher. Students who are true learners provide us with endless avenues to inspire them and be inspired by them. I, too, am reading through the Maine Nerdy Camp notes and following on Twitter. It is a real tribute to those who collaborated to make this a possibility. Lastly, I could not let this weekend go by without seeing Selma so tonight is the night out with my son and husband. Stay well, my friend.

  5. I always show a video from Mr Sharp’s classroom on the first day of my Children’s Lit class: Mr Sharp Loves Reading–where he stomps around on the desks shrieking about how reading is awesome. My college students are absolutely in awe and man, do they want to know how to be that excited about reading!

  6. I hope you are feeling better soon! I have a dear, dear friend with RA, and winter can just be hard. Take care. But what amazing students you have! I love that. As I went through Twitter on Friday night, I noticed the pictures from Colby’s room with Donalyn. That could be a post-Celebrating Great Teachers! (It could go on forever in a series!) I’m anxious to see Selma too! Let us know what you think of it when you get there!

  7. Isn’t it a wonderful thing when we can leave our classroom and everything goes as planned? You have trained your students well! I also celebrate the work the Colby and Donalyn do for all students. Both of them have inspired me so much as a teacher! I hope this week is warmer and better for you!

  8. So fun to see a note like that from a sub! And to have students who dealt with a glitch in constructive ways. Hope you have warmer weather and improved health this week!

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