When I moved to 7th grade English, I didn’t know how much this change would affect me. How I would spend more hours than I had ever spent trying to help all of my students like reading more. How their reading truths would shape me as a teacher. How there would be lost sleep, but also triumphant moments of knowing that what we did together made a difference to a kid. That what we did together meant that a child might actually keep reading or even start back up.
I have shared our experiences here. I have spoken about it wherever I have been invited. I have taken the words of my students and held them up for others to learn from because they have taught me so much. Through their insight, I was able to become a better teacher, even if I still don’t have all of the answers.
And so I wrote a book. A book to hold all of their ideas. A book to hold all of mine. A book to take the ideas of others that have pioneered better reading instruction and meshed it with what we are asked to do within our English instruction, within our 45 minutes, within the confinement and the pressure we feel. And I asked a woman I admire so much if she would read it and possibly write the foreword. I couldn’t believe it when Donalyn Miller said yes. After all, her groundbreaking book The Book Whisperer is one of the books that gave me the courage to change in the first place.
I have poured every ounce of truth that my students gave me into this book and this book is now ready for the world. Or, almost ready. With a release month of July or August – the book is written and now I am ready to reveal its cover. So world; meet the book that I hope helps others. Meet the book that I hope will be inspirational for those who need it. Meet the wisdom of the kids from room 235D and may their words be a light for you as they were for me. To pre-order your copy, go here.