Teaching writers' workshop is the best thing I do all day. It is powerful to help young children to become writers. Great books, intentional instruction, high expectations, and wide open spaces. Think Katie Wood Ray. Think Ralph Fletcher. It all comes together here.

Same philosophies extend to instructional coaching. It's about clarity of intention, reflection, and ownership. Working side by side. Building communities of learners (of all ages).

Thursday, March 1, 2018

#SOL18 Day 1

The Tiny Gentleman

Eight sets of hugging arms,
The smallest bodies actually airborne.
Two to eleven year olds
Launching themselves
At the sound of the door.
Nothing makes an aunt feel more loved
Than this traditional greeting—
Joining the party
(Late, as usual).

Or so I thought. . .

This time,
Emerging from the kid-pile,
Ty is waiting
(The smallest of the triplets)
Only four—such a peanut.
Paper plate in both hands
Extended upward—
Seven blueberries
A pistachio
Two olives—one green, one black
A clove of garlic
A pita chip with a mountain of dip.
Runny nose and face alight:
“Aunt Amy, I made this nack (snack) for you!”


Knocks me over again and again.


  1. This is a really sweet poem. I love the juxtaposition of the two stanzas, with the first one showing what normally happens, and the second one showing what made this encounter different (and better). It seems like you have lots of love in your life. Lucky you!

  2. Delighted you're joining us this month, Amy! WELCOME to our writing community.

    It seems like there's a lot of love amidst all of the busy-ness. :)

  3. Savor the joy and those special snacks. This poem will warm your heart when you think about these kids years from now.

  4. I enjoy the way the snacks spill out over the plate (I mean page) and how you capture both the ordinary and the extraordinary in this moment. I also love that you are slicing this year! Can't wait to read more!

  5. I love the last line. These are moments to cherish.

  6. What a great snapshot of your nephew! Your use of detail, "Seven blueberries, a pistachio, etc." is absolutely perfect!