Link up with our book discussion at Thinking of Teaching.
I think this book is going to change things in my classroom. It's kind of weird to think, but we as teachers seem to be rule followers. Not all of us, but for the most part I think we are. I love that Donalyn Miller is giving us permission (backing it with research) to share our love for reading by letting our students read. So simple, but we are pressed from all sides to get the kids achieving at specific levels by specific times and so much gets lost.
I am a reader. My parents read to me since I was a baby. One of our family memories that we laugh at is about reading. I have always had allergies and itched my nose. I do it quite often according to family and friends, but I don't really notice it. You need to know that to understand the story. My Mom, Dad, little sister and I were in my parents bed and I was reading everyone a book. I was about 6 and my sister was about 3, I think. I kept dropping one side of the book to itch my nose. I guess that bothered my sister because the next time I needed to itch, I guess I made a funny face or something, she reached over and did it for me. I just kept right on reading! My parents love that story. So do I. :)
I read a lot. I am blessed to have a husband who is also a reader. His parents still laugh about the time his mom came in on us in their living room. I was at one end of the couch reading my book and he was at the other reading his book. Our feet were touching in the middle. We were teenagers. I get jealous of him because he can remember every part of a book after the first read. Although, I think it is better to be like me because after 6 months or so I can reread a book and enjoy it a lot because I have forgot the exact ending.
Anyway, back to The Book Whisperer. I really connected to her stories of being a life-long reader. I want to pass that on to my students. I have to say that I have had the "Wake-Up Call" (pg. 11). I prepared so much and for so long and things kind of fell flat. It is good to hear her say that she has moved on and is making it her own. Just like her, I read the books, go to workshops, and do research online. I wanted to make my classroom and teaching style mimic other teachers. Better teachers. More experienced teachers. But I have found that it doesn't work because I am not a carbon copy of those people. I have to take what I learn and adapt it to fit my personality and my class.
I think the best part of chapter 1 was learning about Donalyn Miller and identifying with her. She is a teacher just like me. I am at the beginning of the journey. She is going to show me what worked for her and I will be able to adapt it to work for me and my students.