Wow. There is so much good reading out there online right now. My biggest issue is finding time to dig in and really digest it all, figure out how to apply it in our work, and then to organize or save it to pull up at a later time when I need it.
I've decided to use two tools for archiving online reading to access at a later date: Evernote and Pinterest. Pinterest will be my main tool as it's visual and I'm a visual person.
Another way for me to save these weekly readings is to round them up for a weekly blog post and tag them to seek them out later. Not only is this good for me, but it's a way that I can share any mind shifting, thought provoking reading with others. My hope is to start conversations, but even if that does not happen, at least some powerful words of others have seeped into the minds of teachers looking to always "do better".
"When you know better, you do better." ~Maya Angelou
Here are some places I visited online this week that really got me thinking. . .
Max Brand, a kindergarten teacher, shares his stack of touchstone texts for his classroom. He explains his process for choosing these 15 books at the Choice Literacy site. I've been thinking a lot about touchstone texts, mentor texts, anchor texts a lot lately and how these are defined differently. Also, I've been collecting a stack of my own touchstone texts to share with teachers next year. I'll be writing about them this summer. :-)
In another article from Choice Literacy, Jennifer Schwanke, writes about how kindergarten teachers can foster a love of literacy. She tells a beautiful story of a kindergartener who was retained and had TWO literacy loving teachers. These kinds of stories make me so happy.
I love Nerdy Book Club, and Jami Spauling has shared her book reading tradition in her family once summer hits, along with 10 fabulous ways to encourage your family to read all summer. I'm wishing my kids were little so I could pile them in the car and live reading with them like Jami does. But, I'm working on my 19 year old son and packing a book in his duffle bag when he leaves for work on his summer job - lots of time spent driving to the work site each week. If you can believe it, he's reading. I'm so sneaky.
Stenhouse always has some cutting edge blog posts by authors hot off the press. Mark your calendars for their Blogstitute 2014 which starts on June 17th.
Are you reading Donalyn Miller's book Reading in the Wild this summer? It NEEDS to be in your summer book stack and then, as you are reading, you can hop on over to Reflect and Refine: Building a Learning Community to join in the discussion of your thoughts on this book. It's a cyber PD! I know I'll be talking about this read! Go buy the book at Amazon and then mark your calendar for talk! What could be better than reading and talking about reading!
Make sure you digest this important article from The New York Times with the research on the importance of handwriting, written by Maria Konnikova. It's so important for us to know why we do what we do in the classroom. If you want to spend more time on handwriting, here is good reason.
And here is a little food for thought about how much it matters that we know about the history of education, especially when making technology decisions for our students ~ Dangerously Irrevelent is one of the top blogs in education and he is not afraid to speak his mind (or truth - as long as there is research to support it).
Finally, summer is a time for us to reflect and really take a deep look at ourselves in how we can cultivate an open heart and presence in not only our teaching, but in our lives.
Hope you have a wonderful week! And, don't forget to rest!!