“Live a little, write a lot.” –National November Writing Month
I think this may be my best year of teaching to date.
After 12-13 years of teaching total, that’s quite a thing to think, much less to say out loud. But I feel it, I feel it in my bones. This is a good, good year.
Was I suddenly gifted with the most amazing students of all time?
No, not really. I had one sixth grader walk into my class on Day One and say, “I don’t like Spanish. There’s no reason not to speak English in ‘Merica.” Yesterday was our last day together, and his opinion hasn’t changed. Much.
So, it’s definitely not the students, but I still feel that this is a great year. I’ve learned so much already, and I am really stretching myself in terms of trying out new technology like FlipGrid and figuring out how to bring gamification to the foreign language classroom.
And I’m working on a novel, a young adult novel in Spanish designed for beginning readers. Seriously, my middle schoolers want more in their recreational reading than to read about a nine-year old who tells his mom he pooped on his own bedroom floor because he doesn’t want to admit he has a dog in his closet.
My students are watching Stranger Things and Riverdale and 13 Reasons Why in English. They want to read something that aligns with where they are at, so I started writing La Pena de Crecer, or The Heartbreak of Growing Up. It’s meant to be a short novel with loads of cognates, mostly in present tense but using preterit naturally if need be. It won’t be a 500 page novel, because that’s overwhelming, but it will be a good start in the right direction to providing interesting age-appropriate texts to teen Spanish learners.
Would you like to join in?
Yes, actually in.
On a whim I joined National November Writing Month, to help me stay focused on my story. On November 19 there’s a Night of Writing Dangerously in San Francisco, but attendees must raise a set amount of money to attend. I am offering this: any donor at the $50 level or over has the option of being included as a character in my story. Any donor at the $100 level can choose details, such as being the Handsome Sidekick or The Mean Math Maestro.
Come to think of it, I haven’t named the Ultimate Bad Boy yet, so his name is still up for grabs as well.
See all the details at my fundraising page, and thanks for coming along on my journey. Details Appear Here.