#celebratelu & #DigiLit Sunday:Classrooms are for relationships, too

#DigiLitSunday is hosted by Margaret Simon @ Reflections on the Teche.  

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

We had an interesting week last week; I was sick and many of my kids were also sick – a visitor to our classroom would have heard coughing and sneezing aplenty, and we went through boxes and boxes of tissues.  On Monday, halfway through the day, I scanned through my lesson plan book and wondered how much we would be able accomplish given the way we were carrying on in Room 202.

But, we carried on.  Each day, my kiddos and I showed up, we acknowledged how rotten most of us were feeling, and then we got on with the business of learning: preparing for a Social Studies unit test, completing the first drafts of our essays, participating in book clubs, and beginning a unit of short story writing.  It was a busy week, yet day after day, we were there for each other.  And, each day, we gave each other our best shot at whatever task was at hand.  At the end of each day, I was too exhausted to think beyond just being grateful that we had not wasted any learning time.  On Friday, however, as my kiddos took their test and I fielded questions and offered little hints about how to manage time, I finally had the time to reflect (and marvel at) what we’d accomplished during this difficult week…and why we were able to do so.

Relationships.  Merriam Webster defines the word with other words such as kinship, relatedness, and connection.  Relationships are fundamental to all we seek to do in our classroom – without that, without being able to trust that we will all show up and give the best of ourselves (well, most of the time) no matter what, the content of what we teach becomes dry, removed, passion-less.  Relationships allow us to learn in spite of feeling under the weather, and even (at times) uninspired.  And relationships grant us permission to be kind to each other so that we can all make it through each learning day in the most positive, constructive way.

On Friday, I celebrated relationships in our classroom:

We made gifts of winter poems for our pen pals at an assisted living facility in upstate New York, in response to their Valentine’s Day cards:

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We allowed ourselves to get carried away and silly, too:

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We welcomed alumni from years past:


We shared book talks and book love:

We left for our February Break needing rest, but feeling good.








8 thoughts on “#celebratelu & #DigiLit Sunday:Classrooms are for relationships, too

  1. Relationship building is important for children to feel honored and be expressive in cultures of trust, Tara. It looks like your class is well aware of this and collaborate freely. You and your students showed resiliency in the face of illness and exhaustion this week and led to a wonderful friendship project at the end of the week. Enjoy your holiday.

  2. Tara,
    I love how your classroom has the synergy of students, work, relationships, and community – all together helping them ALL be successful! Learning is complicated and the stuff around us needs attention just as much as the real learning!

    So much learning in evidence in this post! ❤

  3. Beautiful reflection. The relationships you cultivate in and outside the classroom are a marvel. The care you show for each other in difficult times is the test of that relationship. Thanks for sharing the pen pal work, the silly, and your former students. AND I am so glad you are on a well-deserved Winter break.

  4. You are on break! Get the rest you need, finally, to get better. Happy to see how your students rally even when under the weather. Love the poetry project with pen pals. I’m going to suggest this for Emily as a way for us to stay connected to the residents.

  5. Despite the “weather” of feeling poorly, you journeyed on, evidence of those relationships you have built so lovingly, Tara. Glad to hear for you all about the break. This was the time after our Expo that I had the week off, and it was sorely needed. Happy R & R!

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