It's not easy being a teacher today. With all of the demands on time, increased district initiatives, added pressures of state tests (which often includes the yearlong undercurrent of test prep), and the oodles of meetings...it's a day-to-day juggling act.
The flip-side: When you see a kiddo's face light up because she makes a connection or figures something out that was tricky, when a group of kids share hot reads or book recommendations for their book stacks, or when a kiddo comes bursting through the door to tell you he made the soccer team or his painting made it into the art show, it fills you with pure JOY!
What is it that makes the "flip-side" mentioned above happen? Proximity. Proximity makes knowing and experiencing all of that, and more, possible. Across the next few posts, Barry (my colleague) and I will be talking about the proximity principle. We believe it's the key because our proximity -- or nearness in space, time, or relationship -- makes a difference. That's because the closer we get to students and their work, the more we can learn about their wants and needs as readers, writers, thinkers, creators, and doers. Once we are "in the know", we can design learning opportunities that meet those wants and needs.
Stick with us as we try to tackle all the demands placed on schools today through five teacher moves that harness the power of proximity and lift small group reading opportunities.