Celebrate with Ruth Ayres Writes …. because we need to celebrate moments in our lives every chance we get.
I first learned about the idea of querencia from Writing Toward Home, Georgia Heard’s sublime book inviting writers to write, where she explains it this way: “In Spanish, the word querencia describes a place where one feels safe, a place from which one’s strength of character is drawn, a place where one feels at home. It comes from the verb querer, which means to desire, to want.”
From September through June, the place where I find querencia is my classroom – it’s where I want to be, where I feel most at home, for the work I do there defines who I am. The last week of August is always given over to unpacking last year’s classroom and preparing it for this year’s kiddos – and it is one of my favorite tasks ever. Because, as I prepare our learning space, I am hoping that it will be also be where fifty new sixth graders feel their querencia lies for the school year ahead: their home base, place of comfort, place they want to be.
In setting up my pods of desks, I thought about all the talk and activity that would transpire there:
In setting up our classroom library, I imagined the way our books would circulate – joyfully passed from one reader to the next:
While putting aside a space for conferencing, I could hear the important book talk and writing talk that I would be privileged to be a part of:
And in setting up my student’s bins, I thought of all the organizational learning this year would also come to mean:
Arranging our easel space for mini lessons and conversations is my favorite thing to do – this space is really the heart of our classroom:
Our walls await the learning we will do together, so they are mostly bare, but our bulletin boards hint at what our first week of togetherness might bring:
And putting together my corner of our room filled me with anticipation for all that will unfold in the year ahead:
Our classroom space, a place of our querencia, is ready for another school year…and I celebrate that!