Days in Couplets, released

It was a bit of a poetic challenge this week for the Day in a Sentence folks: create a reflective couplet. I am pleased to present the rhymes and semi-rhymes and more:

First off, Anne M. admits that the rhyme thing … well, it didn’t pan out. But Day in a Sentence if nothing if not flexible, so:

A few days of adventure have just passed me by
It started off calmly , with problems so few,
Then a meeting in Melbourne, my husband came too
We drove in a car to get there on cue
Unfortunately, just at dawn we hit a kangaroo
It went down and damaged our car which is not new
We were able to drive on to the city oh, so far
My husband went to see the grand prix live with cars
And at night we slept above a nightclub full of jive.
After seeing the footy albeit ‘live’

Cynthia seems like she is having a blast.

Splashing in mud puddles one after one
Tommy LaRue and My-My having an afternoon of fun

Val captures the sense of freedom, no matter the weather:

Seven days mindless fun
Regardless of the lack of sun

There is a clear sense of “rush” to the lines of Marg‘s couplets, isn’t there? But also, a hint of something calmer on the other side of chaos.

Student teachers, meetings and 2 sports days in the mix
Some colleague camaraderie was the perfect little fix.
5 days left till end of term, I’m dragging to the line,
2 weeks of reading, catching up, and then we’ll all be fine.

No, Alex, it is not bad. No stress with Days in a Sentence. Just sharing and reflection. I won’t count the syllables or check the rhymes. Plus, you’re on break!

Off on Spring Break for an entire week
Hoping for my Work in Progress to tweak

I can always count on Ken to come up with something witty with his poetry, which is like a first language to him.

The day has come to split a thought in two
And write a pair of lines to rhyme on cue.

It’s a trio of couplets! (I like the sound of that). Thanks, Alan.

It’s football season in Australia
My team got beaten, that’s a failure!

Today has dawned with clouds of grey
Where is the sun to light the way?

Is the gloom that blankets me
Part of my sport misery?

sara wrote about tests, too (like me), which don’t make for fun rhymes but she, of course, found a way to be playful about it.

finally, our stupid state tests are all done,
so show us the door, we’re ready to run!

Gail P. gives poetry a try and comes out shining. Way to go, Gail.

Pushing through the week
At times with heavy load,
I long for days to pass, to bring the week its close
But then I am renewed,
A student’s learning shows,
And I’m reminded why – this is the path I chose.

See you later this week.

Peace (in poems),


Days in a Couplet

With Poetry Month around the corner, I thought we could once again try Day in a Couplet, in which you boil down your week or day into two lines that rhyme. No other rules or regulations to stymie your creative minds. Use the comment link on this post, and I will collect and republish the couplets sometime over the coming weekend.

Here is mine:

Next week shall bring us the big state tests
And along with that, unfortunately: stress

Peace (in rhyme),

Day in a Sentence: better late than never

I guess the week got away from me. But here is the call for words …. for Day in a Sentence. How is your week going? Your day? Consider joining us by boiling your reflection down to a single sentence and sharing it out with the comment link on this blog post. I will collect and publish sometime over the weekend.

Peace (in your days),

Day in a Sentence at Alex’s Place

(¡noʎ ɥʇıʍ ɯnıɹqılɐnbǝ noʎ ƃuıɹq puɐ) ǝɹǝɥʇ ɹǝʌo ʎʇɹɐd ǝɥʇ uıoɾ oʇ noʎ ǝʇıʌuı ǝʍ ˙sʇsoɥ ‘xǝlɐ ‘puǝıɹɟ ʎɹɐɹǝʇıl ʎɯ sɐ (¡spɹɐʍʞɔɐq puɐ ¡uʍop ǝpısdn puɐ) ǝʌoɯ ǝɥʇ uo sı ǝɔuǝʇuǝs ɐ uı ʎɐp ‘ʞǝǝʍ sıɥʇ

Translation: This week, day in a sentence is on the move (and upside down! and backwards!) as my literary friend, Alex, hosts. We invite you to join the party over there (and bring you equalibrium with you!)

Hold on you say: how did he do that? I used a site called Flip. Not worth much other than a good laugh, but hey, I’ll take it.

Head to Alex’s blog: and add your thoughts.

‘(ʇxǝʇ uʍop ǝpısdn uı) ǝɔɐǝd

Deep into Days in a Sentence

There was another wonderful collection of Days in a Sentence from folks this week. I am always surprised and interested when another submission finds its way into my blog bin. Here goes:

In Massachusetts, we are entering our testing season — the MCAS. Mary, my colleague at the Western Massachusetts Writing Project, is already thinking of how the testing can be turned to her advantage. She is so smart like that.

I wish that helping students become better test takers actually helped them become better learners. Alas, I feel the real test comes after all our tests are over.

You have all read about the tragic fires in Australia and Anne M. is right there, teaching her students about safety and we call cross our fingers that the drills don’t turn into reality for her.

A more settled week at school, where we practiced fire drills in anticipation of a high risk bushfire danger day again today (Friday) but fortunately all is well for us.

Ghosts in the computer? Hacker spirits? Byte-sized sprites? Lynne C. experienced some oddities in the lab this week.

My timer blasts for no reason, and one of the computers repowers up out of nowhere; noise kharma?

Ken gets his Haiku mojo up and running this week.

With no computer
there’s time to reflect on life
without a PC.

Janice suffers from the pressure to put a grade on knowledge acquisition when her gut tells her that it might not be the most adequate way to gauge learning and progress in her students. I think her conundrum is also most of ours, right?

This week I hate that the timelines of report cards seems to contradict almost everything we know about good teaching practice; the kids aren’t ready, I know they’re not ready, but I test them anyway just so I’ll have marks to put on report cards. Aaargggghhh!

Did someone say Groundhog Day? Matt enters the cycle.

I’m wrapping up loose ends to begin the process again.

Shaun experiences both sides of the coin.

I have been the assessed and the assessor, to grow as a learner and to grow my learners.

Happy birthday, Elona!

This week my granddaughter and I combined our birthday celebrations-she’s 4 and I’m 4+.

sara is feeling .. uh … antsy.

oh my god – not having a vacation at this time of year is akin to being swarmed by angry hornets and seeing the smoke pot twenty yards away.

Mary Lee has been away and now wants to return. I have some snow and ice and cold that I can let her have, for cheap!

Weeks full of long days and hard work got me to this Phoenix IRA pause, and it’s been SO good to slow down in the sun, but I am ready to go back to clouds and cold and work and family and home and friends and students and routine.

Aram is faced with a dilemma I bet a lot of high school teachers, in particular, face in this age of easy cut-and-paste-with-no-attribution research papers. I don’t have an answer for him but I wonder if there is a better approach out there for him. Maybe creating multi-modal documents that force students to be creative and make their own materials?

After discovering the fifth research paper that “borrows” freely from Wikipedia, I seriously am considering completely pitching the way I teach research papers, as opposed to calling them all lazy.

Two years of work … off in the mail and Nina can breathe a sigh of relief.

As I mailed 11.5 pounds of an institute self-study we have been working on for almost 2 years, I felt an even bigger weight lift off my shoulders.

Stacey — whose collaborative site, Two Writing Teachers, begins the Slice of Life Challenge this week that is worth checking out and participating in — had one of those heart-thumping moments that I hope you never experience (but I have).

I consider myself lucky since my defensive driving skills saved me from an accident on 95 South this evening… scary!

I was not sure if this was Bonnie‘s sentence, but I like it because it shows how immersed she is in working with teachers and kids, and how ambitious she is.

I am getting ready to work with 100 6th graders as they create digital stories.

Ben is riding high on a pave of optimism and pride in his students, and I think we should all ride along with him. When one of us succeeds, we all succeed.

My students (11th grade) have truly impressed me with their ability to rise to my expectations for literary quote IDs. Judging by their performance on my test, I would say that those who made 80%+ on my test could walk in to a college English class at a university and perform and get the same grade as the university students. I have never been so proud of students.

Cynthia, a dear friend from the National Writing Project, had some good news, too, as an initiative to create a Technology Institute seems to be gaining ground when she gathered up a crucial audience.

A small modicum of success–today the Alcorn Writing Project’s leadership team agreed to be the participants in our first technology institute!

Amy had a breather, thanks for a holiday.

On this three day weekend celebrating Casimir Pulaski, I am appreciating an extra day for catching up.

Parades … dancing … Lynn J. also has a nice break. I bet we see some evidence on PhotoFridays in the coming week, right?

Grateful that today is Saturday and I can forget about the kids for a couple of days, I’m headed out to watch them march and dance in a parade this morning.

Thank you to everyone and one final note: The Slice of Life Challenge for the month of March is now up and running over at Two Writing Teachers and I encourage you to consider joining in the fun of writing about those central moments of life. I “ran” into Stacey and Ruth last year with the Slice of Life and found it a great way to connect with others. See Two Writing Teachers for more information.

Peace (in sharing),

On the prowl for Days in a Sentence

Thanks to Bonnie and Anne for guest hosting Days in a Sentence for a couple of weeks while I was off to Japan with my family. I appreciate the fact that there are plenty of folks who are willing to host the feature from time to time, and if you are interested in hosting Day in a Sentence at your blog, let me know. It’s a fun and relatively easy way to bring the network to your doorstep.

This week’s Day in a Sentence is the traditional format: reflect, and boil down your week or a day in your week, and use the comment link down below to share out. I will collect and then publish them all over the weekend. Easy, right? Come on in and join us.

Here is my sentence:

Although I am required to teach it, I can’t quite figure out how a student learning about parts of speech and breaking down the role of an individual word in a sentence becomes a better writer.

Peace (in sharing),

PS — Remember the theme song? Here is again, just to keep you dancin’