Celebrating Real


This week I’m celebrating with Ruth Ayres. Please take a look at all of this week’s celebrations on her blog.

 Real Writing

This week we had some excitement in my class when one of my fourth grade students, Charlotte, had her review of Eight Keys by Suzanne LaFleur featured on Nerdy Book Club. I happened to be on Twitter at the right time when Colby tweeted out a request for a retro review.  Although I couldn’t remember if student work was ever featured on Nerdy, I put it out there, and he graciously accepted.


You can read her post here. What I loved about this experience was that it was a perfect way to show my students that writing is real. It’s not about the essays you hand in to your teacher (because we do that), and it’s not about the thirty minute timed prompt on the state assessment (we’re about to have to do that too).  It’s about purpose and passion AND audience. My students have had some chances to connect with a larger audience through blogging this year, but no experience came close to seeing all of the comments on Charlotte’s Nerdy post this week. And we had celebration on top of celebration when one of her favorite authors, Cynthia Lord, commented on her review mid-morning.

Charlotte got a taste of what it can be like when your writing has an impact. She had students in the hallway asking her for her autograph, supervisors stopping by, teachers and prinicipals calling and emailing to congratulate. And the impact was felt by all of the students in my class. Requests to publish a review on our class blog skyrocketted, and I am celebrating my students’ renewed sense of this writing thing is for real.

Real Friendship

I’m also celebrating my colleagues past and present who have become some of my closest friends. I’m celebrating the support, the feedback, the willingness to understand me. You know who you are.  You know what you’ve done. I love you. Thank you.




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21 responses to “Celebrating Real

  1. I love this picture of your student in front of her blog post! That’s terrific!! I read her review and loved it! WOW!! That is quite a celebration!!

  2. Mrs. Tucker

    The way you inspire passion for reading and writing in your posts always brings me to tears. I wish I was a student in your class!

  3. Hurray to your student and authentic writing! And friendships!

  4. Wow! What a great lesson that even though we don’t think it will our words do have impact! Have a great week! -Earl!

  5. What a wonderful experience for your student! I love when we make reading and writing ‘real’ for our students. Thank you for reminding me of the importance to do that.


    • Thank you! I love that we had a moment like this in the midst of starting to prepare for state testing. It’s so hard to keep it real this time of year.

  6. This is a celebration indeed! I love that your student and her classmates were able to see the impact her writing (and their writing) can have on an authentic/real audience.

  7. I love that your student was a rockstar for this accomplishment. I love that other students were asking for an autograph. It must have been so awesome for her when Cynthia Lord commented!

  8. It’s wonderful to hear about your student, Jen, to hear all the response she received, to see the picture, & to know that you took the time to give your idea a try with Colby. So happy to hear you have good colleagues, too. It’s so important, like a big hug needed during our work.

  9. I loved reading Charlotte’s Nerdy Book Club post – it was awesome!! And Cynthia Lord commenting? Priceless!!

  10. Maryann

    What wonderful news indeed! The love of reading is contagious and it happens in room 404 each day. So proud of Charlotte’s accomplishments.

  11. What a fantastic opportunity for your student and her classmates as they see what she has accomplished. So glad you had her step out and challenge herself.

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