Sunday, July 5, 2015

July 2015 Reading Institute - Day 1 - Lucy's Keynote Address

Lucy's Keynote Address - amazing!!! Simply amazing!

I realized that this was my "lucky" 13th Institute as I have been coming to Institutes at TCRWP since the summer of 2007. Lucy starts her keynote the same way, every time I've heard her speak..."You come from..." and names the places around the globe and the positions we hold and the situations we come from. This year she reported that we were from 40 countries and 42 states. A total of 1,300 people chosen from 8,216 applications. I felt so lucky to be sitting in Riverside church to listen and begin a week of work and inspiration.

She spoke of the ideas of Steven Johnson (his TEDtalk  is entitled Where do good ideas come from?)
and how his ideas are similar to what happens when our reading students are in book clubs. They are coming together to discuss their book ideas much like Johnson describes as what happens when good ideas are discussed at the Coffee House - an architecture that leads to good ideas. I recommend watching the talk! (And after this week of attending two Advanced Sections that each placed me in a HF and a NF book club, I totally get the value of book clubs and can't wait to run them in my 3rd grade reading workshop during the 2015-16 school year.)

She spoke of the ideas of Brene Brown (her  TEDtalk is entitled The power of vulnerability). She stated that we need to be fully engaged and willing to take risks which WILL lead us to feeling vulnerable. However, the alternative is to avoid, disengage, be fearful. She pointed out that in such a state, you are less able to be flexible and responsive. In this state, you are literally stupider! (Another good talk to watch!) She also suggested reading Brene Brown's book: Daring Greatly: How the Courage to be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent and Lead.

To inspire, she had us watch the Collin ES Happy to Read video!! I immediately emailed my school librarian and suggested we make such a video!! It looked fun and as Lucy reminded us, our job is to rally kids to LOVE books and have FUN with books!

She suggested that we must be a public learner, wearing the love of reading on our sleeve!
HOW? A few suggestions include:
* read with your colleagues
* study with your colleagues
* learn from others with the idea that "my school is where the stars come out" and that we all have strengths to offer so lets learn, not just from the noted experts, but from all on staff
* listen
* don't be afraid to bring forth questions

She stated something that really stuck with me the rest of the day...
"Watch kids closely. Embrace the trouble you notice as you watch kids. Get excited to teach them when they struggle."  As she said this, I realized that I often do the exact opposite in the classroom. I teach the mini-lesson and then get excited when I watch and see kids doing it right and I get annoyed by the strugglers. But she is right. I should turn my energy around and get excited to reteach through a conference what a struggler struggles with. My lens needs to shift. As she reminded us, we need to be asking "What did you learn today?" and not "What did you teach today?"

Check back as I have much more to share from my Advance Sections:
* Reading Notebooks through Historical Fiction Book Clubs with Mary Ehrenworth
* Nonfiction Book Clubs with Emily Smith
and Keynotes by authors Carmen Agra Deedy, James Howe, Mary Ehrenworth and Kathy Collins

I hope to have all my notes shared by Friday as my week of learning at TCWRP is too great to just keep to myself!


  1. How exciting to be in a place of learning that speaks to you as a teacher, with ideas that make sense and give you tools to use immediately! Thanks for sharing your learning with us.

  2. What great reminders from Lucy's impassioned keynote! I'm looking forward to seeing and hearing the institute from your eyes! <3

  3. It sounds so inspiring to be there, Sally. I like all the links to talks you gave, have not read Daring Greatly, although I've seen it shared many times. Thanks for your own inspiration today. I love that final part about 'watching kids closely'.

  4. I love attending the workshop. I went for two years in a row. Thank you for giving me a taste of it, since I am not able to attend this year. I will be following your blog and looking back on it for the wisdom from the workshop. I appreciate the notes. This is the same way I attend these sessions, writing, writing, writing, and trying to hold on to all the little gems I hear. Thank you.

  5. Thank you so much for this. I feel like I was there. This line lingers with me: "we need to be asking 'What did you learn today?' and not
    'What did you teach today?'"

    Can't wait to read more!

  6. I am like you- needing to shift my lens to embrace the struggler.
    Your posts are inspiring and I will keep reading them. Thanks also for the links- summer is a good time to follow up on the original sources!
    Your style here of paragraphs then lists really works, by the wy :)
    See you later, Sally. I look forward to writing together in person.

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