A Little Nettle Creek Love

Thursday, January 5, 2017

     I had the pleasure of spending the day with the teachers at Nettle Creek in Morris yesterday working on guided reading with their K-5 teachers.  The topic was decided by the teachers earlier in the year, because they decided that they wanted to grow in that area.  Yesterday, they opened up their school and their students to me, and we worked together to grow as reading teachers.  

     I am so very impressed that teachers (who don't even know me very well) opened their classroom doors to me.  They allowed me to walk around the building, going classroom to classroom, looking for examples of balanced literacy in their rooms.  They also allowed me to work with their students, and as I taught three guided reading lessons, they were flexible with teacher coverage and watched in pairs in a fishbowl. Their administrator watched, too.  Then, when the day was over, we used their extended day to talk a little more deeply about the parts that go into planning well for guided reading, and made some plans to move their guided reading groups along.

     I mean, isn't that just a growth mindset utopia?  It is in my book.

     I just love that the teachers at Nettle Creek are so dedicated to their students that they not only want to learn, but trusted me to come into their classrooms, work with their kids, and allowed me to give feedback. More impressively, they asked questions and talked with each other to make plans for their students.

     Did I mention that they videotaped my lessons?  I mean, isn't that just the type of thing I tell my teachers to do all the time, and they turned the tables on me!  Marissa Darlington, you speak my language. 

     Thank you, Nettle Creek.  The sunrise you see over the fields in Morris every morning pales in comparison to your beauty as educators.  

     I urged the Nettle Creek teachers to look at this picture of my own kids at the beginning of the year, and asked them to make sure they makes "stops" along their path as teachers.  Our school hallways are a lot like that path, where the doors remain closed and we make our way to our own rooms and just pass them.  But, if we stop every once in a while and go through those doors, or open our doors to others, then we see all the beauty that is hidden on the sides of the path.  Collaboration is right there waiting.  

    I urge us all, in 2017, to embrace opportunities to learn from others in our building or across our districts.  Whether it is in person, social media, or anything in between, let's learn with each other this year.  


No Comments Yet, Leave Yours!