Plug In and Connect

March #SOLC15 Day 7


Yesterday the man on the news said it was “Unplug Day”.  He said we should turn off all of our devices and really connect with people.

How sad is it that we have to be offered that advice (or directive, however one might have taken it?)

I thought about our writing community.

What the man on TV didn’t know was that by writing our stories – our personal, funny, serious, scary, sentimental, poetic stories  (on our devices) –  and sharing them with such a huge writing community we ARE connecting with people.

The connections we’re making go so very deep.  I was at a local restaurant in my school district yesterday afternoon ordering pizza to pick up later for dinner.  I was greeted by a woman who worked there and who also happened to be one of our students’ parents.  She lit up when she saw me.  I placed my order and then she said, “Mrs. Janski (aka texted me a poem that my son wrote in school today.  It’s a poem about my father dying.”  I listened intently.  I love hearing from our parents, especially when they talk about their children’s writing.  She went on to ask if she could read me his poem.  I looked behind me, appealing with my eyes to the customer behind me, Please let her read this poem to me.  It’s so important!

I stood at the pizza counter, both of us beaming with pride with tears soon to follow, as I listened to a mom read her son’s poem to me.  “I had no idea he could write like that”, she said.  “I don’t know what they’re doing at that school, but they are bringing stuff out of my son that I never knew was there!” I thought to myself, I know exactly what they’re doing at that school.  Mrs. Weathers, your son’s teacher  (aka and the rest of her colleagues across the district are very intentionally and deliberately molding confident young writers.  My comment back to mom was, “This is only the beginning for your son.  He’s got so much more to say.”



17 thoughts on “Plug In and Connect

  1. So nice when parents see and share what their students are learning with their teachers.
    Go writing! and to sharing that writing. Although I have to say my post today is about putting my media aside to work on other tasks that are not getting done. I see both sides! 🙂

  2. How fortunate for you students to be in a school where teachers give the gift of writing! I love how the teachers share the students’ masterpieces with their parents! It seems like it made that parent beam with pride, yet another gift!

  3. Great connection! Also, I couldn’t wait to share with Jesse’s mom. I still talked to her later last night… She was beaming from ear to ear way into the night. These are the reasons we do what we do as teachers.

  4. “I know exactly what they’re doing at that school” This really stood out to me. You spend so much time at the schools and you really DO know exactly what they are doing. Truthfully, it made me proud. Such a confident thought and such an impact on the kids your influence and leadership has had. And the work of the teachers…so amazing, such role models. The kids are so lucky to be taught by such hard-working teachers. Parents – they want to be involved and proud. of their kids, sometimes they just don’t know how. How awesome this parent got her hands on Jesse’s writing. Sometimes I can relate with the idea of unplugging and should make more of a habit of it, but I am so appreciative of the relationships created and fostered through writing on our electronic devices. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Angela!! You are such a positive cheerleader for our district. Your comments mean so much to me – for all of us in the district! We are a lucky – hardworking – bunch!

  5. This challenge connects us in the very best of ways. The whole month of March- we walk around with such insight to the world around us. I was so struck by Jesse’s writing and so very glad that someone shared it with his mom. It’s a moment that will have ripples far beyond that slice in time.

  6. Your experience is so gratifying to me for our district. We are giving kids the opportunity to see themselves as writers and their parents a new insight to their children. Your vision for all of this was spot on. You provided the means and support to make it happen. We are a writing community!

  7. It doesn’t really get much better that. Can there really be better validation of success than a proud mother reading her child’s poem off her phone from a check out line? Beautiful stuff!

  8. Im so proud that a moment with my student has had such a positive domino effect on others. Love hearing how proud mom is and how eager she is to share his work. Moments like this will not are Thee reason we show up every day.

  9. Connections! I love how the internet connects us – through blogging, facebook, twitter… professionally and personally. I think the trick really is to make sure we balance that with personal connections: face to face… and I wonder about the next generations. . . will those kids know how to connect in person?
    Great slice – it weaves together nicely: the connection through blogging, and the connection at the pizza shop. 🙂

  10. I don’t know if you’ve thought about this yet, but I think a journal article about the way you, your teachers, and your students are using writing to connect with one another is in order. You’re doing such incredible work out there, Carrie. All of you!

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