Posts Tagged ‘quotes’

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When we returned from winter break, I started a new daily writing activity in my classroom: 100 Days of Notebooking. In truth we don’t have 100 days of school left, but no matter. The point is to write and draw and be creative every day in some way or another. My students have embraced this idea.

We start each entry with the date and a quote. I have a copy of 360 Days of Wonder which is full of quotes. I also allow students to look up quotes by famous people they admire. One student is choosing a sports quote each day.

Notebook page, January 6, 2022

The papers I used for the collage above were images in a National Geographic magazine of a polluted lake in Romania. I told Chloe about it and she wrote a poem about it. I asked her if I could have a copy for my notebook page.

For Christmas, one of my students gave me a gift card to Target, so I used it to get more notebooking supplies, washi tape, felt-tip pens, and decorative paper.

new notebook supplies

Michelle Haseltine started a Facebook group and an Instagram hashtag. It’s fun to be a part of a larger group. Everyone has their own unique style of notebooking. I enjoy drawing inspiration from others.

Notebook page, January 10, 2022

Avalyn picked out the quote above, and we discussed the figurative meaning of it. On her notebook page, she wrote a loving poem. You can see how she worked on the line breaks. She posted it on our Fanschool page. You can leave a comment for her here.

Avalyn, 2nd grade

Do you have a notebook? What creativity can you bring to the blank page?

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Poetry Friday round-up is with Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge

I am participating in a book study called “A Course in Miracles.” It is quite an amazing journey of meditations that lead to self-awareness and ultimately to inner peace.  Each day there is a new mantra.  One of the mantras for this week was “God is the love in which I forgive myself.”  I was drawn to creating a golden shovel poem and used Canva.com to design the graphic.

In my classroom, we have been using the golden shovel form to respond to quotes.  Invented by Nikki Grimes, a golden shovel form begins with writing the words of the quote down the right hand margin of the page.  Then you write a poem around the words, incorporating the quote into the poem.  On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day I wrote one together with Jayden around this quote, “The time is always right to do what is right.”

When someone knows the
right thing but time
goes too fast, and is
never around long enough, always
do what’s right
even when it’s hard to.
No matter what you do
Listen to what
your heart
knows is

The golden shovel form is a way to honor the words of another while making them your own. Next time you read an inspiring quote, try to write a poem around it.




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Poetry Friday round-up is with Jone this week at Check it Out!

I read the above quote in a post from Smack Dab in the Middle. (Image made in Canva) If you are a writer, take a minute to read the post. Darlene Jacobson wrote, “For me, and I suspect for many of us who write for children, EVERYTHING is a miracle.”

I write with children, not just for children, and feel that every time we write together, a miracle happens.  Lately I have been writing skinny poems, multiple skinnies a day.  I’ve gotten into the rhythm.  Starting with a simple line leading to single words is a quick and inspirational way to write.  Like haiku, a skinny poem is a short form, but unlike haiku that focuses on a single moment, a skinny can focus on a single thought or idea. (See more about the form on my PF post last week.)

Taking inspiration from the above quote, I wrote the following:

Everything is a miracle
by a miracle is everything.

Today, after a stormy day yesterday, the sky is clear and the sun is shining, a daily miracle.  There are fields of butterweed blooming.

CREDIT:Jeff Lepore/Science Source

Sunshine is a daily miracle
daily miracle in the Sun.


What miracles do you see every day?  Can you write a simple skinny poem?

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Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life March Challenge




Hiding in a stack of books near my desk was a book of quotes I received in a gift exchange at NCTE from Stacey Shubitz.  Thanks, Stacey for inspiration to write.

The quote above reminds me of a similar quote,“If you love something set it free. If it comes back, it’s yours. If not, it was never meant to be.”

As each day goes by, I learn more about happiness.  Today, I visited a close friend who has terminal cancer.  I wasn’t sure what I would see when I walked into her home.  But everything was as it had been.  She is surrounded by things that please her, drift wood, wind chimes, flowers.  She is surrounded by people she loves.  She wakes up each new day in gratitude.

I don’t think we should require a diagnosis to learn to live in happiness and gratitude.  The most important things in life are not things.  They are love, kindness, empathy, joy.  These things are not things you can hold in your hand, so you must release them to find them.  You must give love to find love.
Kindness for kindness.
Empathy for empathy.
Joy for Joy.
And when you give all of these “things” away, what you have is happiness.

When we hug someone we love, we never have any guarantees that we will be with them again.  We hear it over and over.  Live for today. Make every moment count.  But when it all comes down to it, what choice do we have?

I released my friend. We hugged.  We smiled. We said “I love you.”  I promised to come see her again.  But for today, I’ve released her.  She was never mine anyway.

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What We See

make a life quote

Join the Tuesday Slice of Life

Join the Tuesday Slice of Life

15 Lines

an interesting exercise to try when you have writer’s block

I didn’t know what to write about for my Tuesday Slice of Life Challenge, so I went back to an exercise from Poets and Writers The Time is Now to collect 15 lines in a day and write from those lines.

Here are some lines I collected:

I write to honor childhood and extend dignity to children. —Caroline Starr Rose

The more unlikely the guest, the more likely it is that we are entertaining Jesus himself. —Bishop Jake Owensby

A great day to do nothing. —Carol Rice

The way you see people is the way you treat them, and the way you treat them is what they become. –Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Everything we carry, even the smallest thing, has weight. —Clare Martin

Love the one you hold. —Mumford and Sons

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. —Winston Churchill



These lines spoke to me and this poem emerged, still rough, but it seems to be wanting to tell me something…

The way you see me is who I become.
I am the unlikely guest who stands
with feet crossed. My toenails are orange.
I wear a cross on my wrist
and another on my neck, in amethyst.

Am I the angel you will entertain today?

I cannot lift you without holding you,
holding some of what weighs you down.
Maybe if we interlock our hands,
intertwine our fingers, the load
will be easier to bear.

–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

A new writing challenge by way of Teaching Authors: Write Fifteen Minutes a Day on Laurie Halse Anderson’s blog. Join me? Can you write 15 minutes today? Set a timer and just go for it.

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