My Summer List

My brain has been so full lately. It’s getting ready for summer vacation, but vacation isn’t quite here. I hope once I leave a school schedule behind my brain will feel free to work the projects free that have been stuck recently.

Here’s my summer list. In no order, and I have no idea how many there will be until I get to the bottom.

1. The big one is an assessment/data project that is stuck and won’t come out in the format that I feel is right. I’ve made a lot of lists. I was worried about this and then I read one of Kristin Cashore’s blog posts. She’s pretty much the only author who I follow on a blog. After reading this post about the revising process I now feel more like a writer who is stuck. That comforts me.

2. I have a website content writing project on my mind.

3. I’m thinking that I should learn how to play Minecraft. I’m not a believer in the idea that I should try to experience everything my students do. I have never had a desire to watch SpongeBob. But I had a discussion with a student this week about LAN’s and lava so I’m ready to download an app and try it. Please let me know if this task will endanger tasks one and two and any others I write lower on the list.

4. I am reading Making Thinking Visible. Because of Janet’s blog Voices from the Inglenook I am embarking on transforming my lesson structure. Frankly, I’m going to try and do less projects and more read aloud and thinking activities. I will continue to incorporate projects through collaboration. For my fixed schedule classes though I need something with more structure and routine for me and my students. Janet’s teaching is very inspiring and I’m ready to try something new! The serendipitous part of this plan is that a friend of mine came in my office with a familiar cover. I said, “Is that Making Thinking Visible?” We bought it the same week! So now I have the motivation to actually read it. We are going to discuss in a few weeks. Maybe two. Or less. I should get busy!

5. Curriculum Planning is on my list. I’m meeting with a few other librarians for a few sessions really focused on planning. I’m hoping to plan out my lessons in advance incorporating a lot of thinking routines. The years when I can get all of my units planned out in advance go better. Otherwise I get to a week before a new unit and I have to search for inspiration. If I have the ideas ready then I can go with it and find lesson plan writing easier or I can change my plan for new inspiration.

6. Reading Make Just One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions. It just looks like a good book. I’m working with our gifted specialist to craft a staff development opportunity for teachers next year about inquiry.

7. Find my dining room table. It’s bad. Really bad. I’d like to see what the finish looks like before the summer is out. Ideally before June is over.

8. I want to try making my own notepads. A friend of mine has them for call numbers at her search computers. I’d like to try this along with some for hold slips. Without a budget to have them printed I thought I could make them!

9. I’d like to get into ‘the city’ a few times this summer. I don’t mind hanging out on the metro for awhile to ride in. Maybe I can read some of the books on my list. A stroll through the National Zoo or some of the Smithsonians might be good.

10. Good old fashioned lazy pool time. I’m not a huge pool-goer, but a friend of mine has a pool with the perfect back porch. A week hanging out on her porch with good friends is exactly the right thing sometimes. As long as she’s not tired of me that’s my ‘vacation’ time.

11. I want to read all of the Elementary Virginia Readers Choice books this summer. I had a dozen students fully participate in this category last year. This year I have ordered more than twice as many books. I always hate trying to read them at the same time they are because I don’t want to check out something they want. This year I’m determined to read all ten before school starts.

I think I’ll leave the list there. It heartens me to get it written down. It makes success seem more likely!!


  1. This is why I love reading your blog! I appreciate you sharing your thoughts!

    • Ha! I ALWAYS have thoughts! Sometimes they are just so messy. I do like reading other’s messy thoughts though. I think we’re all the same. Some of us just contain ourselves more in an effort to seem sane :)

  2. I forgot to ever comment (danger of reading on a phone … it defaults to the wrong Google account!). Anyway. I love Voices from the Inglenook as well. I tried checking out the ebook version of Making Thinking Visible but it was hard for me to read and pay attention in that format. I will be blog lurking with interest … is it one I must have? Even when I have several other PD books I have yet to finish? Also that Make Just One Change?

    My brother is a book binder (well … he trained for that but it doesn’t support a family so now after a stint in the military he’s applying to police academies). He could make the most beautiful notepads and books. Have fun!

  3. VISIT ME!!!!!!!

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