Thursday, January 3, 2008

Back to Work, back to reality

Christmas vacation ended far to soon for this teacher!! (Yes, we can call it Christmas break now, the backlash for years of ignoring the real reason for the season!) I believe that we are the only district that is back in school and we all shake our heads and wonder why. Not much teaching is going on for these two days but I did take the time to read to some tired first graders and re-excite them about books! Believe me I take every opportunity that I get.

For my in-person book group I am reading the book, Education of a Wandering Man by Louis La'mour. He was a real reader and takes every opportunity to share his love of reading with his audience. I find myself writing little quotes down in my book journal - "No matter what there is to read - a reader has to read it!" That sounds just about right! I have even found myself trying to read over people's shoulders when things get bad. Now that's a desperate woman!

I am also reading a collection of essays by Anne Fadiman called At Large and At Small. How I enjoy her work!! Her detail and her wide and varied interests blend together so well. She crafts a beautiful paragraph although I admit that many times I have to sit side by side with my dictionary. Some words just don't roll off my tongue in everyday conversation! I especially loved the essays entitled "A Piece of Cotton" about our country's flag as well the one called "The Arctic Hedonist." It really exposed me to things I had never talked or read about. I would love to sit down and chat with this woman - she seems like she must always be thinking about some great idea while I struggle with the mundane and minutiae!

Despite the real crimp that teaching puts in my reading time I do love being around my students. They are excited about life, eager to learn and to please. It is a joy to help them discover the tools to being a great reader. They are certainly little sponges. I count myself lucky to be in their presence!

Christmas brought me only ONE book this year - I,however; gave lots away and of course when I visited my favorite bookstore I just had to get some for myself. My book-buying moratorium lasted until December 22 so I guess I did pretty well. Since that is my anniversary I think I can count those as anniversary presents!!! So, even though the "get" list wasn't long, I still made out well in the books category . My TBR stack grows ever higher and it seems that the books I put on reserve at the library always become available at once! So much temptation.

I best go put my nose in a book or I will never catch up - - after teaching today and back to an early schedule I just hope I can keep my eyes open!

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